About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 4138-4143
Publication year: 2011
ISBN: 978-84-615-0441-1
ISSN: 2340-1117

Conference name: 3rd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2011
Location: Barcelona, Spain

A SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT EFFORT FOR PHONOLOGICAL AWARENESS SKILLS IN READING ACQUISITION IN TURKISH

G. Kartal

Bogazici University (TURKEY)
Proficiency in reading is a major indicator of success in school. While reading accuracy is a prerequisite to understanding, which itself is essential for learning, phonological awareness is one of the critical skills in reading acquisition. The use of computerized materials in building phonological awareness (PA) has been as effective as print materials used in face-to-face instruction. Computerized activities targeting specific needs can help skills building, and are most beneficial for students with lower skill levels.

The main goal of this study is to develop a phonological awareness program, based on relevant research findings, complete with PA skills software, print materials, and a teacher training component. There was a major shift in the teaching of reading in Turkish a few years ago, undertaken by the Ministry of Education, where the phonics method replaced the whole language approach in schools nationwide. However, lack of appropriate instructional materials and insufficient teacher training has plagued the effort since. The computerized and print materials currently used in instruction are not necessarily based on scientific findings on how to best teach reading in Turkish using the phonics method. The purpose of this study is to respond to this urgent need, as well as to contribute to the research literature in PA instruction more broadly.

The study is carried out in five phases: 1. Needs analysis and testing, 2. Design and development, 3. Pilot implementation, 4. Refine and re-design, and 5. Large-scale implementation and testing. At the end of the second phase, a game-like PA software was developed for use in early literacy instruction in Turkish, that comprised seven modules embedded within a story of the adventures of two children. Each module focused on one type of PA skill, including letter-sound correspondence, initial sound, rhyming, blending, and elision. The software was tried out with 32 children in a first grade classroom. Preliminary findings showed that children made the highest number of mistakes in rhyming and elision. Their motivation for the content and interaction was high.

All the data collected so far are still under analysis. The findings from the needs analysis phase, where PA testing was carried out with 120 children, are consistent with the literature in that phonological awareness and rapid naming explain unique variance in word reading. However, rapid naming appears to have a stronger role in Turkish compared to that in English. Further development is underway, where a sequel to the “game” has been designed and is being developed. A large-scale implementation and testing is planned, where the two-episode game-like software will be used in several schools, and gains in reading skills will be tested in early literacy.
@InProceedings{KARTAL2011ASO,
author = {Kartal, G.},
title = {A SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT EFFORT FOR PHONOLOGICAL AWARENESS SKILLS IN READING ACQUISITION IN TURKISH},
series = {3rd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN11 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-615-0441-1},
issn = {2340-1117},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona, Spain},
month = {4-6 July, 2011},
year = {2011},
pages = {4138-4143}}
TY - CONF
AU - G. Kartal
TI - A SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT EFFORT FOR PHONOLOGICAL AWARENESS SKILLS IN READING ACQUISITION IN TURKISH
SN - 978-84-615-0441-1/2340-1117
PY - 2011
Y1 - 4-6 July, 2011
CI - Barcelona, Spain
JO - 3rd International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN11 Proceedings
SP - 4138
EP - 4143
ER -
G. Kartal (2011) A SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT EFFORT FOR PHONOLOGICAL AWARENESS SKILLS IN READING ACQUISITION IN TURKISH, EDULEARN11 Proceedings, pp. 4138-4143.
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