The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of a tier-2 combined oral narrative and expository language intervention on kindergarteners' narrative and expository skills in comparison to an alternate decoding intervention and no treatment control condition. This study included 54 kindergarten students. After being administered the PEARL Kindergarten Screener at the beginning of the school year, eight students were found as at-risk for future reading comprehension difficulty and were matched to nine students not-at-risk, and all assigned to a language treatment group. Additional students not-at-risk for future reading comprehension difficulty were randomly assigned to an alternate decoding treatment group (n = 9) and to a no treatment control group (n = 9). Narrative intervention took place for approximately four months biweekly for 15 minutes, then expository language intervention was provided for approximately two months biweekly for 15 minutes. Students across all conditions were administered narrative and expository measures at the conclusion of the study. Results indicated that the typically developing students had significantly higher narrative and expository outcomes when compared to the typically developing students in the alternate decoding treatment and no treatment condition. Additionally, we found that the at-risk students who received oral language intervention were able to catch up to their typically developing peers in both narrative and expository outcomes with a trajectory that suggested that they would eventually meet grade level narrative language benchmark expectations. Early oral language intervention is the first step in reducing the poor reading comprehension outcomes across the nation. By targeting oral language comprehension, even young kindergarten students can improve both decoding and comprehension, better preparing them for future academic success.



College and Department

David O. McKay School of Education; Communication Disorders



Date Submitted


Document Type





oral language, narrative, expository, tier-2 intervention, kindergarten



Included in

Education Commons