Language Lab: Response to Intervention (RTI) Program for Teaching Grammar, Vocabulary, and Storytelling

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JoAnn Wiechmann, Dr Judy Rudebusch, Nancy Kuhles

  • Language Lab
  • Language Lab
    Language LAB introduces systematic, research-based instruction to struggling primary students prior to making a special education referral.


Age Range: 4 to 10
2012

Language LAB is a response to intervention (RTI) program for elementary school students (grades K–4) whose English language abilities fall below grade-level standards. This 15-hour (60 or 90 minutes per week), evidence-based program provides Tier II or Tier III language intervention for groups of 2–4 students. Language LAB introduces systematic, research-based instruction to students prior to making a special education referral. The language skills taught in Language LAB are consistent with state educational standards and promote strong reading skills.

Language LAB consists of five (5) learning stations:

  • Skill Drill Station,
  • Listen and Learn Station,
  • Talk Aloud Station,
  • Story Station, and
  • Homework Connections Station.

Over a 30-minute session (2–3 days per week), students rotate through the first four stations. The first three stations teach specific grammar and vocabulary skills and the fourth station targets narrative skills. Language LAB also includes a Homework Connections workbook that provides homework for all of the skills.

Language LAB was piloted in three culturally diverse school districts and over 81% of the students (n=26) either exited or were progressing at expected rates. The use of Language LAB aided in the early identification of students needing a referral for a possible language and/or learning disability.

Language LAB targets verbs (regular and irregular tenses), adverbs, nouns (regular and irregular plurals), adjectives, and connected speech (clauses, conjunctions, negatives, direct and indirect objects). It also includes a Story Station with scripted lessons for teaching narrative skills at three levels, kindergarten, 1–2 grade, and 3–4 grade. Students learn to use basic story grammar components to retell a story, create a story, and to add “sparkle” and cohesiveness to the stories they create. During these scripted Story Station lessons, the SLP closely monitors the use of target language skills.

Language LAB consists of:

  • Resource Guide with printable CD-ROM (for all books)
  • Homework Connections Workbook
  • Skill Drill Workbook
  • Five Language LAB Station Signs
  • 120 Talk Aloud Cards
  • Six Audio CDs with 5000 sentences
  • 90 Story Station Cards
  • Three Language Screener Cards

Table of Contents

The complete Language LAB™ kit includes:

  • Resource Guide with printable CD-ROM (for all books)
  • Homework Connections Workbook
  • Skill Drill Workbook
  • Five Language LAB Station Signs
  • 120 Talk Aloud Cards
  • Six Audio CDs with 5000 sentences
  • 90 Story Station Cards
  • Three Language Screener Cards

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


What is Language LAB? 

Language LAB is a response to intervention (RTI) program for elementary school students (grades K–4) whose English language abilities fall below grade-level standards.

Who benefits from Language LAB?

Language LAB is for elementary school students, grades K–4, PRIOR to referral for speech-language pathology services. Language LAB introduces systematic, research-based instruction to students prior to making a special education referral. The language skills taught in Language LAB are consistent with state educational standards and promote strong reading skills.

Is Language LAB appropriate for students already receiving services?

Language LAB is research based and all of the strategies are appropriate for students already receiving speech therapy.

How long does Language LAB take to complete?

Language LAB is a 15-hour program that you deliver 2–3 days per week in 30-minute sessions

How was Language LAB developed?

Language LAB was field tested in a culturally diverse school district in the Houston, Texas area. During one semester of intervention, 81% of the students (n=26) either exited or were progressing at expected rates. Language LAB aided in the early identification of students needing a referral for a possible language and/or learning disability.

How does Language LAB work?

Language LAB consists of five (5) learning stations—Skill Drill Station, Listen and Learn Station, Talk Aloud Station, Story Station, and Homework Connections Station. Over a 30-minute session (2–3 days per week), students rotate through all four stations. The first three stations teach specific grammar and vocabulary skills and the fourth station targets narrative skills. Language LAB also includes a Homework Connections workbook that provides homework for all of the skills.

How many students are in a group?

The maximum number of students in a group is four, but you may adjust the stations for groups of five students.

What does Language LAB target?

Language LAB targets verbs (regular and irregular tenses), adverbs, nouns (regular and irregular plurals), adjectives, and connected speech (clauses, conjunctions, negatives, direct and indirect objects). It also includes a Story Station with scripted lessons for teaching narrative skills at three levels: kindergarten, 1–2 grade, and 3–4 grade. Students learn to use basic story grammar components to retell a story, create a story, and to add “sparkle” and cohesiveness to the stories they create. During these scripted Story Station lessons, the SLP closely monitors the use of target language skills.