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Students' meaning making in a mobile assisted Chinese idiom learning environment
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Paper presented at the 9th International Conference of the Learning Sciences (ICLS) 2010, Chicago, IL, USA, 29 June - 2 July, 2010
In recent years, we witness the rise of communicative and contextualized language
learning approaches that is concomitant with developments of Mobile Assisted Language Learning (MALL). Im this study, we present a pilot study in MALL that emphasizes "creative learner's output" and contextualized meaning making. In learning Chinese idioms, students
used smartphones on a one-device-per-person basis to capture photos of the real-life contexts
pertaining to the idioms, and to construct sentences with them. Subsequently, in-class or
online discussions took place, which would enhance the students' understanding in the proper
usage of the idioms. The learning design is grounded in the seamless learning model that
encompass in-class formal learning and out-of-class informal setting, and personal and social
learning spaces. The students' ongoing, open-ended, personal-to-social meaning making
process and artifacts have indeed shown some indicators of "seamless language learning" that
has the potential of transforming language learning into an authentic learning experience.
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