Joan Lee | Communication, Media and Learning Technologies Design | Mathematics Science and Technology

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Teachers College, Columbia University
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Communication, Media & Learning Technologies Design

In the Department of Mathematics, Science & Technology

Developing an ebook App for Emergent Readers

Joan Lee, M.A. in Instructional Technology and Media

It is well known that reading and writing are the basis of all education. The debates surrounding approaches to teaching literacy in efforts to close the reading gap in the U.S. have revolved around teacher-directed, skills-based instruction, versus student-directed, whole language approaches.

Technology-enhanced ebooks have exhibited a strong ability to engage young children and provide motivating contexts for literacy development. This paper investigates how the considerate design of digital interactive ebook apps can help address some of these current issues by providing 3 to 5-year- old emergent readers with a balanced literacy framework that combines elements of skills-based instruction with student-directed learning.

This project takes game design principles and aims to integrate them into an interactive ebook that will motivate young children to read independently and strengthen their phonemic awareness, vocabulary, and comprehension. This paper also covers the many pitfalls, such as distraction and poor comprehension of the story, of certain interactive features.

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