According to a new study by Professor Phaedra Royle and Postdoctoral fellow Alexandra Marquis of the University of Montreal’s School of Speech Language Pathology and Audiology, there is a relationship between oral and written language skills. 71 children, ages six to nine, participated in the study which focused on the children’s ability to orally conjugate verbs in the past tense or to use auxiliaries and other grammatical elements in writing. 38 children only spoke French, while 33 were multilingual, with French being their second or third language. The children were initially evaluated in the first grade and later retested by the end of second grade. The results obtained from the study demonstrated that that first grade oral skills were predictive of second grade writing skills. Morphological awareness in a spoken language can predict possible spelling and grammar difficulties in a written language. According to Professor Royle, the more children are able to use verb tense in spoken language, the more easily they can learn written language. The data also revealed a link between oral and written morphosyntactic skills for both groups of children. This study also served to contradict the popular belief that bilingualism, at an early age, can be detrimental to oral and written language learning.
Original Article: http://www.news-medical.net/news/20141006/Childrens-oral-language-can-be-a-good-predictor-of-future-writing-difficulties.aspx
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