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Teaching English in grades 3 to 6 through storytelling to blind and partially sighted students

Tanja Centa (2018) Teaching English in grades 3 to 6 through storytelling to blind and partially sighted students. MSc thesis.

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    Storytelling is a very popular and effective approach in early English language teaching. The richness of the narratives, in the sense of content and illustrations, as well as various pre-, while-, and after-reading activities that can be formed around the story, enable teachers to prepare a diverse lesson plan. Narratives can be used within one lesson to make it more interesting or, on the other hand, a set of lessons can be based on them creating cross-curricular links in achieving different study goals. Sighted children can experience narratives using all of their senses. For them, a story can be enhanced by using visual aids, facial expressions, and gestures. These elements are excluded when teaching blind and partially-sighted children. All visual information that sighted children can get during storytelling needs to be replaced with other means of presentation and experiencing the story. The storytelling method is a wonderful way of teaching blind and partially-sighted young learners but they need special teaching aids and adapted activities in order for them to be able to understand and experience the story and acquire language the same way as their sighted peers. In addition, these quality teaching aids that are used for blind and partially-sighted children can also be, as experiences show, very interesting and useful for their sighted classmates who also love to touch, smell, or taste the elements of the story. The main purpose of this thesis is to develop, present, and test some new teaching aids for English lessons that could replace the visual materials currently used in narratives and to present, as well, certain pre-, while-, and after-reading activities. Another purpose is to evaluate the effects of this new teaching approach on the students’ language acquisition and analyze their motivation in doing the activities. The following teaching aids were used: a story box, a story sack, a story board, and a tactile book. The stories used during the lessons were: Goldilocks and the Three Bears (story Box), Rod Campbell: Dear ZOO (story sack), The Three Little Pigs (tactile book), and Eric Carle: The Very Hungry Caterpillar (story board). The story We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, written by Michael Rosen, was also presented via TPR method. The teaching aids and activities were tested in practice and the effect of the teaching approach was analyzed with the students taking part in the research. Nine pupils attending Classes 3 to 6 of basic education equal education standard programme of Centre IRIS were tested. The results of the research have shown that these new teaching aids for blind and partially-sighted children, when used in practice, do a better perception of specific items and concepts used in a story and improve language acquisition. Last but not least, these aids do increase a student’s motivation to perform pre-, while-, and after-reading tasks. The results of the research will be of great importance for all teachers working with blind and partially-sighted children.

    Item Type: Thesis (MSc thesis)
    Keywords: Early English language teaching, story-based approach, blind and partially-sighted, teaching aids, adaptations
    Number of Pages: 89
    Language of Content: Slovenian
    Mentor / Comentors:
    Mentor / ComentorsIDFunction
    doc. dr. Mateja Dagarin FojkarMentor
    doc. dr. Aksinja KermaunerComentor
    Link to COBISS: http://www.cobiss.si/scripts/cobiss?command=search&base=50126&select=(ID=11927625)
    Institution: University of Ljubljana
    Department: Faculty of Education
    Item ID: 4993
    Date Deposited: 26 Feb 2018 08:21
    Last Modified: 26 Feb 2018 08:21
    URI: http://pefprints.pef.uni-lj.si/id/eprint/4993

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