Volume 9 Num. 1 - March 2009
Teaching Generative Reading Via Recombination of Minimal Textual Units: A Legacy of Verbal Behavior to Children in Brazil
Volume 9 Num. 1 - March 2009 - Pages 19-44
Deisy G. de Souza , Julio C. de Rose , Thais C. Faleiros , Renato Bortoloti , Elenice Seixas Hanna , William J. McIlvane
This paper reports results of two studies that sought to teach generative reading skills to
a large group of Brazilian children who were exhibiting protracted failure in school.
Inspired by Skinner?s analysis of verbal relations and minimal verbal units, the methodology
took advantage of certain characteristics of Portuguese. Many words in this language are
comprised of two-letter syllabic units (e.g., BO+LA= ball, CA+BO= handle, LA+TA=
can) that can be recombined to form new words (e.g., BOCA= mouth, BOTA= boot), thus
establishing a route to generative reading via recombinative generalization. Such syllabic
units were incorporated within curricular framework that used matching-to-sample and
learning by exclusion methods to teach matching relations involving pictures, printed and
spoken words, and printed and spoken syllables. Study 1 was conducted within a universitybased
learning center that maintained certain aspects of laboratory conditions. It showed
that teaching textual relations between dictated and printed syllables could control
procedurally the inter- and intra-participant variability observed in past studies that lacked
this feature -resulting in virtually universally positive teaching outcomes. Study 2 was
conducted in a public school programs that applied the same basic training methodology.
Positive training outcomes in an experimental group were approximately 3-5 times greater
than that in a placebo control group. Together, these studies illustrate that the functional
analysis in Verbal Behavior is having a direct impact in educational science in Brazil. It
has led to procedures that can be effectively translated from the laboratory to the community
via delivery systems that can be implemented in the developing world.
Functional verbal relations, textual units, matching-to-sample, recombinative generalization, reading prerequisites, developmental disabilities
More articles in this volume
- [1-17] Relational Flexibility and Human Intelligence: Extending the remit of Skinner?s Verbal Behavior
- [45-57] The four causes of behavior: Aristotle and Skinner
- [59-66] The relationship between extra school activities, short sleeping, sedentary leisure and childhood overweight.
- [67-78] Effects of length of infection on predictors of adherence in persons with HIV.
- [79-88] Third-party reactions to organizational unfairness
- [89-100] Engagement as a consequence of organizational socialization
- [101-107] Aggression prevention in children and adolescents.
- [109-122] Self-reported use of Internet among adolescents: Psychological profile of elevated internet use.
- [123-136] Relationship between family and school environments: The role of empathy, attitude to authority and violent behavior in adolescence.