Explicit synthetic phonics for teaching reading to young EFL learners
I’m a junior researcher on this study being led by Dr. Janina Kahn-Horwitz and Hanny Fuks of Oranim Academic College in Israel. This is an experimental design study that is trying to measure the effectiveness of a synthetic phonics approach to EFL reading education in elementary schools in Israel. We have gathered data from pre-tests and post-tests for an experimental and control group of fourth graders, and we are currently at the data analysis stage. We intend for this to be a multi-study project involving more schools after the results of this initial preliminary study are published.
Peace Education in Colombia
I’m currently a graduate research assistant on a large, qualitative study being conducted by Dr. Michelle Bellino of the University of Michigan. More information about this study can be found in this news post, quoted at length here:
As Colombia transitions from more than fifty years of internal armed conflict, how will educators engage with students around the complex causes and consequences of protracted violence, and the fragile transition to peace? Negotiating an end to the conflict has polarized society, raising questions about security, accountability for past violence, and the potential for far-left and far-right political ideologies to divide Colombia’s democracy. In contrast to other post-conflict settings, there is a strong national initiative and educational policy context for Colombia’s Cátedra de Paz, a cross-curricular effort to implement peace education, as peace processes continue to evolve.
This study draws from a diverse sample of secondary schools in Bogotá to examine how teachers approach conversations about peace, conflict, and justice, as well as how they perceive school demographics and conflict legacies as enabling and constraining these interactions. Deepening our understanding of opportunities and challenges across classroom contexts will inform efforts to better support teachers and young learners in navigating difficult conversations. This study will have relevance to other post-conflict contexts, informing educational reforms, in addition to transitional justice decisions such as integration and resettlement policies that significantly impact the educational sector.
I’ve set up a digital library where I keep my family’s growing collection of books. This includes everything from technical manuals and academic festschrifts to Great Lectures and fantasy novels (I’m particularly a fan of Brandon Sanderson). Check out my recent reads here!
I keep this growing library organized with the wonderful open-source tool Calibre. I can’t recommend it enough. For the web server, I use calibre-web because I find it much more aesthetically pleasing and user friendly than the built-in Calibre Server. I host the server locally on a Raspberry Pi 4.