Tan, L. H., Xu, M., Chang, C. Q., & Siok, W. T. (2013). China’s language input system in the digital age affects children’s reading development. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 110(3), 1119-1123.
Written Chinese as a logographic system was developed over 3,000 years ago. Historically, Chinese children have learned to read by learning to associate the visuo-graphic properties of Chinese characters with lexical meaning, typically through handwriting. In recent years, however, many Chinese children have learned to use electronic communication devices based on the pinyin input method, which associates phonemes and English letters with characters. When children use pinyin to key in letters, their spelling no longer depends on reproducing the visuo-graphic properties of characters that are indispensable to Chinese reading, and, thus, typing in pinyin may conﬂict with the traditional learning processes for written Chinese. We found that the overall incidence rate of severe reading difﬁculty appears to be much higher than ever reported on Chinese reading. Crucially, we found that children’s reading scores were signiﬁcantly negatively correlated with their use of the pinyin input method, suggesting that pinyin typing on e-devices hinders Chinese reading development. The Chinese language has survived the technological challenges of the digital era, but the beneﬁts of communicating digitally may come with a cost in proﬁcient learning of written Chinese.
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Jock Boyd (2011) The role of digital devices in vocabulary acquisition, Cambridge ESOL : Research Notes : Issue 44 / May 2011
With the advent of social networks, cloud computing and digital devices, the landscape of learning is changing rapidly. Students are using digital devices, in the form of smart phones and iPads in the classroom but, from my observations, they have been using them as mere reference materials, looking up words and translating them into their own languages. These powerful devices are capable of much more; they can be used as learning tools if they are incorporated into classroom teaching practice. The present action research investigates how students normally use their digital devices for vocabulary acquisition and shows how digital devices could be used more fully and creatively to enhance learning of second language (L2) vocabulary, both general and specialised (discipline-specific).
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Maryam Tayebinik, Dr. Marlia Puteh (2012) Mobile Learning to Support Teaching English as a Second Language, Journal of Education and Practice, Vol 3, No 7, 2012
Technology utilization in distance education has demonstrated its significance in the transfer of knowledge for both the instructors and the learners. This is also made possible through the use of the Internet which helps change the traditional teaching approaches into more modern methods when integrated with the pedagogical instruction. Mobile devices together with other forms of technology-based tools in education have established their potential in language teaching. In this regards, the Teaching of English as a Second Language (TESL) has become easier and more attractive via mobile learning. The aim of this study is to review the mobile-based teaching and learning in the English language classroom. Such integration of mobile learning with English language teaching may offer great innovations in the pedagogical delivery.
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Anuj Kumar, Pooja Reddy, Anuj Tewari, Rajat Agrawal, Matthew Kam (2012) Improving Literacy in Developing Countries Using Speech Recognition-Supported Games on Mobile Devices, To appear in Proceedings of ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI ’12), Austin, Texas, May 5-10, 2012.
Learning to read in a second language is challenging, but highly rewarding. For low-income children in developing countries, this task can be significantly more challenging because of lack of access to high-quality schooling, but can potentially improve economic prospects at the same time. A synthesis of research findings suggests that practicing recalling and vocalizing words for expressing an intended meaning could improve word reading skills – including reading in a second language – more than silent recognition of what the given words mean. Unfortunately, many language learning software do not support this instructional approach, owing to the technical challenges of incorporating speech recognition support to check that the learner is vocalizing the correct word. In this paper, we present results from a usability test and two subsequent experiments that explore the use of two speech recognition- enabled mobile games to help rural children in India read words with understanding.
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Lucretia M. Fraga, Janis M. Harmon, Karen D. Wood, and Elizabeth Buckelew-Martin (2011) “Digital Word Walls and Vocabulary Learning: The Use of iPods to Facilitate Vocabulary Instruction with ESL Students”, Journal of the Research Center for Educational Technology (RCET) Vol. 7, No. 2, Fall 2011
Mobile devices such as iPods can be potentially effective learning tools, especially for advancing the vocabulary development of English as a Second Language (ESL) learners. The purpose of this study was twofold: (1) to investigate ESL high school students’ knowledge of using iPods for learning vocabulary; and (2) to determine ESL high school students’ achievement differences in vocabulary when exposed to two traditional vocabulary instructional frameworks using word walls versus digital word wall instruction. The study followed a mixed-method design using both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. The specific strategies used to support vocabulary learning in all three instructional frameworks were based upon the principles of effective vocabulary instruction and factors related to active student engagement. Findings indicate no statistically significant differences between instructional frameworks in word-meaning acquisition. However, students were more engaged in the activities associated with the digital word wall framework, i.e. activities related to developing vocabulary vodcasts.
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BURNETT, C. (2009). Research into literacy and technology in primary classrooms: an exploration of understandings generated by recent studies. Journal of research in reading (special issue: New developments in literacy and technology), 32 (1), 22-37.
Whilst much has been written about the implications for ‘literacy’ for practices surrounding digital technologies (Gee, 2000a; Luke and Carrington, 2002; Snyder, 1998), there has been surprisingly little research investigating new literacies in primary classrooms (Andrews, 2003; Labbo and Reinking, 2003: Lankshear and Knobel, 2003). This review examines the kinds of understandings that have been generated through studies of primary literacy and technology reported during the period 2000-2006. It uses Green’s distinction between ‘operational’, ‘cultural’ and ‘critical’ dimensions of primary literacy (Lankshear and Bigum, 1999; Snyder, 2001) to investigate the focus and methodology of 38 empirical studies. It explores ways in which research may be informed by assumptions and practices associated with print literacy, but also highlights the kinds of studies which are beginning to investigate the implications of digital texts for primary education. The paper concludes by arguing for further ethnographic and phenomenological studies of classroom literacy practices in order to explore the complex contexts which surround and are mediated by digital texts.
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Guy Merchant (2009) Literacy in virtual worlds, Journal of Research in Reading, Volume 32, Issue 1, 2009, pp 38–56
Introducing new digital literacies into classroom settings is an important and challenging task, and one that is encouraged by both policy-makers and educators. This paper draws on a case study of a 3D virtual world which aimed to engage and motivate primary school children in an immersive and literacy-rich on-line experience. Planning decisions, early experimentation and the experience of avatar interaction are explored. Using field notes, in-world interviews and observations I analyse pupil and teacher perspectives on the use of digital literacy and its relationship to conventional classroom literacy routines, and use these to trace the potential and inherently disruptive nature of such work. The paper makes the case for a wider recognition of the role of technology in literacy and suggests that teachers need time for experimentation and professional development if they are to respond appropriately to new digital literacies in the classroom.
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Carla Arena (2008) Blogging in the Language Classroom: It Doesn’t “Simply Happen”, Teaching English as a Second or Foreign Language (2008) Volume: 11, Issue: 3, Pages: 1-7
This paper describes the importance of guiding students to use blogs (Web logs) for educational purposes. While blogs are commonly thought of as simply happening, in fact, educators in a media literate world need to rethink and redefine best practices for using this tool. Introduction Ideally, through blogs, students would create content and construct knowledge using the wonders of these publishing tools that abound online. I definitely believe in the power of blogs to improve students abilities while learning a second language, in my case, in an EFL context. However, blogging doesnt simply happen. The word has been spread about the potential of blogging for the language classroom, but there needs to be more than an idea to convince students that they can really profit from this tool on the read/write Web. There are numerous options for blogs, depending on the goals set for them. In the English as a Foreign Language setting, one can find blogs for professional development, class blogs, and students individual blogs, among others. In this sense, unleashing the potential of blogs for language learning will be directly related to teachers understanding of the pedagogical benefits of such a tool, and the students perception of its value in their learning process. As pointed out by Glogowsky (2008) in his post about blogtalk, Blogging is not about choosing a topic and writing responses for the rest of the term. It is about meaningful, thoughtful engagement with ideas (para. 2). Blogs as Conversations Blogs imply conversations. And, for these conversations to happen, there first needs to be a redefinition of the educators presence and role in the blogging classroom. Educators should be facilitate the process of establishing the online conversations within oneself, among learners, with other teachers, and possibly the world. Students will have to get used to the blogging experience to learn how to properly answer posts, how to cite, and how to establish their own blogging tone through their posts. in such a way that they find their unique channel of communication in the target language.
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Zaini Amir, Kemboja Ismail, Supyan Hussin (2011) Blogs in Language Learning: Maximizing Students’ Collaborative Writing, Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences (2011) Volume: 18, Pages: 537-543
Educators have engaged with Web 2.0 technologies such as blogs or podcasts, to make learning more personalized, more interactive and more dynamic. Blogging has emerged as one of the most popular forms of online discourse. Blogging is seen as a learning platform in providing opportunities for learning English which can improve the students’ knowledge about their language performance in writing. The unique nature of the blog’s architecture and the low cost have not only affected how students can publish and distribute their work to a wider audience but also how the students see themselves as authors. This paper focuses on the use of blogs in a language and IT course which can help to maximize students’ collaborative writing. Findings from the blogs include the perceptions of ESL students of how blogging can contribute to the development of the students’ writing.
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