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LINGUIST List 24.3940

Tue Oct 08 2013

Diss: Applied Ling, Lang Acq, Phonology: Lourenço: 'Educação para a diversidade e desenvolvimento fonológico na infância'

Editor for this issue: Xiyan Wang <xiyanlinguistlist.org>

Date: 07-Oct-2013
From: Mónica Lourenço <monicalourencoua.pt>
Subject: Educação para a diversidade e desenvolvimento fonológico na infância
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Institution: Universidade de Aveiro
Program: Didactics and Teacher Education
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2013

Author: Mónica Lourenço

Dissertation Title: Educação para a diversidade e desenvolvimento fonológico na infância

Linguistic Field(s): Applied Linguistics
                            Language Acquisition
                            Phonology

Dissertation Director:
Ana Isabel Andrade

Dissertation Abstract:

Education for Diversity and Phonological Development in Childhood

This study analyses the role of an awakening to languages project on the
promotion of phonological awareness in preschool children. With this goal
in mind, it follows the phonological development of a group of twenty-one
children, aged 3 to 6, who participated in a project, entitled 'A journey
through the world of languages and sounds'.

Embracing a mixed methods research paradigm, the study used quantitative
and qualitative methods of data collection and analysis: in order to
evaluate the children's phonological development, data from phonological
awareness tests, applied to an experimental and a control group before and
after the intervention project, were collected and statistically analysed;
in order to understand how the children developed their phonological
awareness, the seven sessions of the intervention project were audio- and
video-recorded, transcribed and subjected to content analysis.

The results of the analysis reveal that, contrary to what occurred with the
control group, the children in the experimental group developed their
phonological awareness significantly, mainly in what concerns phonemic
manipulation and segmentation skills. Phonological development was more
visible in older (5 to 6 year olds) than younger children (3 to 4 year
olds), and seemed to be causally connected to the awakening to languages
activities the children participated in. In particular, activities related
to language analysis and comparison increased children's curiosity towards
language as an object, and stimulated their willingness to play with sounds
and languages, which in turn enabled the development of a more explicit
awareness of oral language units and the discovery of the alphabetic principle.

These findings suggest the importance of integrating plural approaches in
the early years curriculum, and highlights how these approaches can support
a global and integrated education, which caters for diversity, promotes
positive attitudes towards otherness, and ensures the development of
metalinguistic skills, essential for a lifelong learning of languages and
an active participation in multilingual and multicultural societies.



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