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Title: Computer-aided storytelling : effects on emergent literacy of preschool-aged children in an EFL context
Author: Recio Saucedo, Alejandra
ISNI:       0000 0004 2674 8156
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2008
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This thesis presents the results of a study involving very young learners of English as a foreign language in Spain. In Phase I of the study, the feasibility of developing a series of guidelines that could be used to develop English lessons based on ICT-stories and communicative tasks was investigated. In Phase II, the lessons derived from the use of the guidelines were implemented with the purpose of exploring the development of story-related emergent literacy skills of a group of 3- and 4 year-old children receiving daily English lessons. The study has extended previous research studies regarding emergent literacy development in first and second language contexts by studying a foreign .language context. The children were asked to retell stories viewed and the transcribed retellings were analysed under the Narrative Scoring Scheme. The children participants showed signs of developmental changes throughout the duration of the course. However, there were marked individual differences in these changes. Further investigation is suggested to study the reasons that might provide insight into why the children developed understanding of story structure in such high variations. Results showed that the ICT-stories motivated the children and as a consequence, their level of participation in the lesson improved. Additionally, teachers found the use of ICT as a positive strategy to enhance young children's learning environment, but they said that implementing ICT-based projects in the young learner classroom necessarily raises issues of school's provision for training and technical support as well as considerations of teacher:child ratios. From the children's perspective, an evaluation of the lesson tasks via a survey showed positive reactions to the inclusion of ICT in the English lesson. Findings of the study show how the young learner English curriculum could consider children's development of emergent literacy skills as a result of learning English via ICT enhanced stories. They also show how ICT integrated in the foreign language curriculum can motivate young children and provide meaning to the activity of learning English at a time when their mother tongue is still developing. The study also yielded unexpected results related to how young children address a task in which a story has to be organised in sequence. These results present interesting research opportunities that could be explored further in the light of theories of cognitive development.
Supervisor: Deignan, Alice ; Walker, Aisha Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available