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iTEO: examining the use of the App iTEO for teaching and learning languages in preschools and primary schools

  • Coordination: Ass.-Prof. Dr. Claudine Kirsch (PI)
  • Collaborators: Dr. Gérard Gretsch (2013-2015), Laurence Di Letitia (2013-2015), Dr. Roberto Gomez (2014-2015) and Dr. Asuncion Bes (January-December 2016)
  • Duration: 2013-2017
  • Funding: Ministère de l'Education Nationale (from September 2013 to August 2015) and University of Luxembourg (from May 2014 to September 2017).
Project description

In Luxembourg, amongst the programmes to further the development of multiple languages, there are none that are either specific or systematic or both. Our project, undertaken in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, addresses the need for the development of innovative didactic methods in order to manage the diversity and heterogeneity in Luxembourgish schools. The iPad App iTEO is a learning and teaching tool that records and edits language. It facilitates children’s collaborative, exploratory and open-ended language learning and allows them to draw on their diverse language repertoires.

The focus of the project was the development of oral skills but, given the inherent link between oracy and literacy, the study also contributed to the development of literacy. We investigated how 4 teachers and 8 children used iTEO to further the learning of languages in nursery and in Years 1 and 2, and how the language practices and the children’s oral performances changed over time. The focus was on non-native Luxembourgish-speaking children but given the collaborative nature of storying on iTEO, Luxembourgish-natives were investigated as well.

This qualitative longitudinal study with data collected over two years used several research methods: video recording of children’s storying, observations of classroom activities involving iTEO, interviews with all participants and the collection of documents. The data analysis drew on grounded theory which offered insights into the learning processes and teaching practices.

Findings of this educational research, firstly, deepened our understanding of the ways in which children aged 4 to 7 used and developed Luxembourgish, German and French when languaging on iTEO, second, helped develop sound pedagogical practices for furthering the learning of multiple languages in this context.

Educational videos on the use of iTEO

We produced a range of longer educational videos and short clips which document the use of the app in two nursery and two primary school classes. The videos show that children developed language skills through collaboratively constructing stories and other oral texts while listening attentively, using languages consciously, imitating, transforming utterances, practicing and reflecting on their language use. Their practice of translanguaging was frequent, regular and purposeful. 

 

Educational videos

 

 

 
Development of oral skills
 
Storying
 
Capitalising on linguistic resources

 

 
Translanguaging and learning
 
Collaboration and dialogue
 
Learning through collaboration

 

 
Language awareness

 

 

Short clips

 

 
Introduction of iTEO in class. Primary school
 
Use of iTEO in the project classes: First steps in French
 
Use of iTEO in the project classes: Practising vocabulary in C.2.2

 

 
First steps in producing French texts
 
A space that encourages creativity and (trans)languaging
 
A space that encourages creativity and (trans)languaging

 

 
Developing language and narrative skills during storytelling
 
Introduction of iTEO in (a preschool) class
 
Collaborative storytelling - watch out for monsters!

 

 
iTEO as a space for creative storytelling, translanguaging and language learning
 
What is a good story? Perspectives of nursery children
 
Listening to stories and commenting in the nursery class
Publications
  • Kirsch, C. and Bes, A. (forthcoming) Promoting literacy through storytelling on the app iTEO. In Breuer, E.O., Lindgren, E., Stavans, A., and Van Steendam, E. (eds.) Multilingual Literacy. Bristol: Multilingual Matters.
  • Kirsch, C. (2018) Developing speaking and pronunciation skills through storytelling on the app iTEO. In Ph. Hood (Ed.) Teaching Languages Creatively (pp. 47-59). London, New York: Routledge.
  • Kirsch, C. (2018). Dynamic interplay of language policy, beliefs and pedagogy in a nursery class in Luxembourg. Language and Education 32(5), 444-461. https://doi.org/10.1080/09500782.2018.1487452
  • Kirsch, C. (2017). Young children capitalizing on their entire language repertoire for language learning at school. Language, Culture and Curriculum, 31(1), 39-55. http://doi.org/10.1080/07908318.2017.1304954
  • Kirsch, C. (2017). Translanguaging practices on iTEO in Preschools. Translation and Translanguaging in Multilingual Contexts, 3(2), 145-166. http://dx.doi.org/10.1075/ttmc.3.2.01kir
  • Kirsch, C. & Cicero Cantanese, G. (2017) Sprachbiographien und ihre Bedeutung in multilingualen Kontexten. Eine Fallstudie aus Luxemburg. Zeitschrift für Grundschulforschung Bildung im Elementar- und Primarbereich 10, 35-48.
  • Kirsch, C. & Bes, A. (2017) Emergent multilinguals learning languages with the iPad app iTEO: a study in primary schools in Luxembourg. The Language Learning Journal, doi:10.1080/09571736.2016.1258721.
  • Kirsch, C. (2016) Developing language skills through collaborative storytelling on iTEO. Literacy Information and Computer Education Journal 7(2), 2254-2262.
  • Kirsch, C. & Gretsch, G. (2015) L’apprentissage langagier avec l’App iTEO. Multilinguisme: enseignement, littératures et cultures au Luxembourg. Synergies pays germanophones. Gerflint 8, 37-48.
  • Gretsch, G. & Kirsch, C. (2015) Echo iTEO. Co-languaging, collaborating, co-constructing. Luxembourg: Mindforest, Septembre
  • Kirsch, C. & Gretsch, G. (2014) Echo iTEO. Sprachräume. Luxembourg: Mindforest, Octobre.
  • Kirsch, C. (2014) Storytelling at home and at the nursery school: A study of bilingual children’s literacy practices. In N. Morys, C. Kirsch, I. De Saint-Georges & G. Gretsch (eds) Lernen und Lehren in multilingualen Kontexten: Zum Umgang mit sprachlich-kultureller Vielfalt im Klassenraum. (Prof. Dr. Jürgen Erfurt). Frankfurt: Peter Lang Verlag, 219-246.
  • Gretsch, G. (2014). iTEO as a Tool-and-Result in dialogical multilingual language learning. In N. Morys, C. Kirsch, I. De Saint-Georges & G. Gretsch (eds) Lernen und Lehren in multilingualen Kontexten: Zum Umgang mit sprachlich-kultureller Vielfalt im Klassenraum. (Prof. Dr. Jürgen Erfurt). Frankfurt: Peter Lang Verlag, 183–217. 
Conferences
  • ‘Dynamic interplay of language policy, beliefs and pedagogy in a nursery class in Luxembourg’ – paper presented on 24.07.2017 by Claudine Kirsch at the world conferenceAILAin Rio, Brazil.
  • ‘Aufbauen auf den mehrsprachigen Ressourcen der Kinder’ – paper presented by Claudine Kirsch on 7.12.2016 at the FachtagungSchule für Alle – interkulturelle Schulentwicklung, Ludwig Maximilians Universität, München, Germany.
  • ‘iTEO as a translanguaging and learning space’ – paper presented by Claudine Kirsch and Asunción Bes on 12.06.2016 at theBangor International Conference on Bilingualism in Education,Bangor, Wales.
  • ‘iTEO: a translanguaging space for collaborative language learning in Luxembourg. Translanguaging as a motor for the development of oral skills in early childhood’ – paper presented by Ofelia García, Claudine Kirsch and Argyro Panagiotopoulou on 18.02.2016 at the conferenceDéveloppement des compétences orales des enfants multilingues, University of Luxembourg, Esch-Belval, Luxembourg
  • ‘Dynamic assessment of children’s language learning processes with iTEO’ – paper presented by Claudine Kirsch and Gérard Gretsch on 9.9.2015 at the conferenceEECERA, Barcelona, Spain.
  • ‘Language learning through storying on iTEO in a nursery school’  – paper presented by Claudine Kirsch and Laurence Di Letizia on 9.9.2015 at the conferenceEECERA, Barcelona, Spain.
  • ‘Developing multilingualism through collaborative storytelling on iTEO in nursery schools in Luxembourg’  – paper presented by Claudine Kirsch on 28.05.2015 at the conferenceRethinking Language, Diversity and Education, Rhodos, Greece.
  • ‘Spaces for translanguaging in diverse language learning situations’  – paper presented by Claudine Kirsch on 20.04.2015 at the conferenceTranslanguaging, practices, skills and pedagogy, Falun, Sweden.
  • ‘Storytelling at home and at school on iTEO: languaging experiences and expectations’– paper presented by Claudine Kirsch on 8.5.2014 at the conference Bilingual myths, monolingual ideologies and (trans)languaging, University of Luxembourg, Walferdange, Luxembourg.
Workshops
  • ‘Sprachenlernen mit der App iTEO’ – workshop led by Claudine Kirsch on 24.11.2017 at the
  • 2. Workshop zur Lehr-Lernforschung, University of Luxembourg, Esch-Belval, Luxembourg.
  • ‘iTEO als Tool zur Sprachentwicklung mehrsprachiger Kinder’- workshop led by Claudine Kirsch on 18.02.2016 at the conférenceDéveloppement des compétences orales des enfants multilingues,University of Luxembourg, Esch-Belval, Luxembourg.
  • ‘iTEO’- workshop led by Claudine Kirsch on 26.11.2015 for the conferenceEAPRIL, University of Luxembourg, Esch-Belval, Luxembourg.
  • ‘Sproocheléieren duerch Geschichtenerzielen mam iTEO’ – workshop led by Claudine Kirsch on 16.5.2.2015 at the conferenceLehr- Lernforschung als Motor für pädagogische Innovation – in Schulen, mit Schulen, für Schulen,University of Luxembourg, Esch-Belval, Luxembourg.
  • ‘Sprachenlernen durch Geschichtenerzählen mit iTEO’ – workshop led by Claudine Kirsch on 21.01.2015 at the8.Französischlehrertag, Universität des Saarlandes, Saarbrücken, Germany.

For further information, please contact Claudine Kirsch or visit the project's storying blog.