Digital technology: Supporting the language and literacy development of ELLs

Julianne Stahl

Abstract


This paper examines the use of digital technologies in the elementary classroom to support the language and literacy development of English language learners (ELLs). My research took place in Calgary, Alberta and included undergraduate students and a university based researcher. A Google Forms survey and an online interview was used to collect data. The results indicated that technology can be helpful to elementary teachers in supporting the language and literacy development of ELLs because it helps motivate and engage students. Teachers should be cognizant of the disadvantages that arise when using technology in the classroom to support ELLs. These concerns include the possibility that ELLs will become too dependent on technology and their social skills will be at risk with too much technology use. Being conscious of the disadvantages of technology use can inform teaching practices.


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