About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 2953-2960
Publication year: 2009
ISBN: 978-84-612-9801-3
ISSN: 2340-1117

Conference name: 1st International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 6-8 July, 2009
Location: Barcelona ,Spain

ON SEARCHING, COLLECTING, AND SHARING: LANGUAGE LEARNING IN DIGITAL AND PHYSICAL DOMAINS

J. Bybee

Pace University School of Education (UNITED STATES)

A number of educational trends including one-one technology programs and emphasis on achievement testing have altered the domains that many secondary students use to acquire knowledge. Research suggests a shift from learning in an outdoor physical environment to a largely indoor, digital environment. This domain shift has influenced language learning and instruction in a variety of ways. Recent examples include the removal of more than 50 nature words like "dandelion", "acorn", and "beaver" from the Oxford Junior Dictionary and the addition of words like "database", "MP3 player", and "Blog". These language-learning issues bear special importance for students with learning disabilities or students learning a non-native language.

My research addresses whether Special Education English-Language Learners acquire science content vocabulary better through virtual searches on the Internet or through actual searches of a natural setting. Students from my classes were taught a list of vocabulary words and then asked to study them by searching for images of the words over the Internet, writing a “student-friendly” definition of the word, writing a sentence with the word in context, and mounting the text and image in a PowerPoint presentation. Students then shared their presentations through an e-portfolio and were given quizzes on the words to assess their mastery of spelling and vocabulary.

The same classes were then taught another list of science words and studied by searching for the actual physical item in a nearby wooded park, writing a “student-friendly” definition of the word, writing a sentence with the word in context, and mounting the image and written text in a field book. Students were then asked to share their field-books in small groups and were given quizzes to assess mastery of spelling and vocabulary.

Data was collected through participant observation, structured and unstructured interviews, a survey, and the spelling and vocabulary quizzes. In general, students did slightly better on the initial spelling and vocabulary quizzes for the list of words that were searched for, collected, and shared “digitally”. However, follow-up quizzes one month after the completion of the project showed much better retention of the words that were searched for, collected, and shared “physically.” In addition, interview and survey data showed that, while students preferred digitally sharing in the e-portfolio format, they preferred physically searching for items in the wooded park area. My paper concludes by suggesting potential ways of combining digital and physical domains like using digital cameras in a natural setting and uploading the images to create e-portfolios.
@InProceedings{BYBEE2009ONS,
author = {Bybee, J.},
title = {ON SEARCHING, COLLECTING, AND SHARING: LANGUAGE LEARNING IN DIGITAL AND PHYSICAL DOMAINS},
series = {1st International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN09 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-612-9801-3},
issn = {2340-1117},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona ,Spain},
month = {6-8 July, 2009},
year = {2009},
pages = {2953-2960}}
TY - CONF
AU - J. Bybee
TI - ON SEARCHING, COLLECTING, AND SHARING: LANGUAGE LEARNING IN DIGITAL AND PHYSICAL DOMAINS
SN - 978-84-612-9801-3/2340-1117
PY - 2009
Y1 - 6-8 July, 2009
CI - Barcelona ,Spain
JO - 1st International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN09 Proceedings
SP - 2953
EP - 2960
ER -
J. Bybee (2009) ON SEARCHING, COLLECTING, AND SHARING: LANGUAGE LEARNING IN DIGITAL AND PHYSICAL DOMAINS, EDULEARN09 Proceedings, pp. 2953-2960.
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