Chat Rooms, Emoji, ELLs, ABCmouse

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Chat rooms can boost success in learning English as a foreign language research shows” from phys.org, 7 July 2015.

This article reviews a newly published book1 which focuses on a research project conducted in the UAE. Ten female students were tracked for one semester as they engaged in conversations with native speakers of English in a chat room setting. The researchers found that the students developed speaking, writing and vocabulary skills. They identified one cause as “the relatively risk-free context of real time but not face-to-face interaction” provided by the technology.

Who needs words when you have an emoji?” by Finnian Curran in The Irish Times, 2 July 2015.

Curran asks: With clear evidence that more and more people are using the minuscule symbols, what does it mean for the future of the English language and should we be worried?

He cites several research studies and scholars who have examined the use of emojis, research which supports how they accompany language and also cultural differences in their usage. He also confirms that he sees no cause for worry.

Effectively incorporating technology with English learners” by Erick Hermann in Multibriefs: Exclusive, 11 June 2015.

Hermann identifies issues that arise when schools and school districts make decisions about expenditures for technology for the upcoming school year and the impact technology has on English Language Learners (ELLs). He points out that while good practice should be behind all such choices and purchases, the specific needs of ELLs who require additional instructional supports, such as various visual aids and redundant information, must be addressed.

Mobile app helps Chinese kids learn English” from Phys.org, 23 June 2015.

Many parents in China want their children to start learning English as early as possible. The ABCmouse English Language Learning app, designed for 3-8 year olds, was developed with very young language learners in mind.

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1Rahma Al-Mahrooqi & Salah Troudi, eds., Using Technology in Foreign Language Teaching, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 10 Jan. 2014.

One Response

  1. The potential for informally educating preschool-aged children with apps such as ABCmouse is very exciting. Most of them, barely out of toddling, are already immersed in the world of games and information made available via apps in mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. At a family gathering last night, my grandsons, ages 4-6, were instantly attracted to my Pebble smartwatch. They quickly grasped the notion of apps on the small screen and methodically pressed the buttons on the sides to see what happened while listening to my explanations. I don’t think schools are prepared to deal with this emerging generation of children who carry the world around in their tiny hands.

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