DIGLIN+

Digitaal alfabetiseringsmateriaal voor anderstalige jongeren en volwassenen

Starting in August, Boom NT2 will be offering DigLin+. This online platform is a treasure chest of exercise material, supplemented with audiovisual aids. DigLin+ contains hundreds of exercises for practicing sounds, reading, writing and listening. The program is the product of a large literacy acquisition project. Using the successful research results, DigLin+ was designed and built by FC-Sprint² Leerbedrijf Bronnen in close cooperation with Ineke van de Craats.

 

About the structure of DigLin+

DigLin+ consists of various types of exercises, arranged by skill. Tabs make it easy to navigate between the various skill sections. This user-friendliness is a key feature of DigLin+, making it an enjoyable and clearly structured program for students to use. All sections are designed for progressing from small, simple units to larger, more complex units; in other words, students start with sounds and move on to words, and then to sentences and short texts. The digital platform also makes it possible for all the aspects of the word to be displayed in one screen: the written word, the spoken word, the meaning in picture form and the letters and sounds that make up the word. Everything is clickable to allow students to work with the material. One of the main findings in previous experiences with DigLin+ was the high amount of interaction with the computer, both with respect to input as well as feedback.

All aspects of the word are displayed in one screen

The power of DigLin+

The intuitive design of the tab icons enables students to independently navigate through the program and make their own decisions. This autonomous learning approach is one of the basic principles of DigLin+. For beginners, it is often a matter of trial and error, and initially it may seem as though the student is completely lost. However, experiences in Denmark and with the predecessor to DigLin+ (the EU project DigLin) have shown that students quickly discover the logic behind the program, and are then able to effectively navigate through the program. This also gives the student insight into all the different things than can be learned and more of what is learned is retained.

 

A second basic principle of DigLin+ is the implicit learning approach. The authors have implemented this approach throughout the program, as research has shown that 90-95% of knowledge is implicitly acquired. Moreover, when it comes to implicit learning there is no correlation with the IQ of the learner, and scientists claim that the implicit system is much faster and more effective for learning even highly complex patterns (Kaufman, 2013). For this reason, the student is not given any instructions by the teacher or the program.

What is the teacher’s role then?

The authors outline the following ideal scenario: We – Jan Deutekom and Ineke van de Craats – envision a class situation with about 15 men and women, or teenagers, talking now and then quietly amongst themselves, while the teacher observes this from a certain distance, sometimes taking a look over a student’s shoulder, sometimes discussing the next assignment or expectation with a student or having a student show her what he or she has learned. If a student has difficulty spelling a word, the teacher observes how he or she returns to a previous exercise to check the correct form. Meanwhile, she hears how another student is already working on Reading 1, clicking on the green words and quietly repeating them – perhaps clicking on them a second time and repeating their meaning to himself. At another computer, she sees two students working through the questions and answers of a dialogue.

Almost everyone is doing something different, but without bothering each other because they are wearing headphones

Another student is practicing Listening and typing by challenging the student next to her to see who can type everything correctly first. Almost everyone is doing something different, but without bothering each other because they are wearing headphones. Meanwhile, the teacher is talking with a few students about what she expects from them for the next time. She then explains an evaluation form to another group of students who are working with it for the first time. All students are given a file in which to keep work schedules and evaluation forms. Because the students themselves are responsible for keeping track of what they have done and how well they did it, they also know where they need to begin the next time and what they need to repeat.

Additional teaching material

In addition to all the exercises for students, DigLin+ also contains additional material that is intended exclusively for teachers. This material can be downloaded and printed. It consists of:

  • printed material in the literacy acquisition section (pictures of ABC’s),
  • What am I able to do? What have I completed? (work overview of ABC’s),
  • What am I able to do? What have I completed? (work overview of texts),
  • predictors (use).

The predictors are designed to provide a rough assessment of a student’s prior knowledge with respect to reading and writing (i.e. typing) in Dutch. The teacher can use this assessment to determine where the student can best begin in DigLin+.

For DigLin+ to be most effective, 60% of the available lesson time in a week should be spent on this program for the literacy acquisition section. Literacy acquisition can be alternated with counting and telling time, writing with pen or pencil and talking about the pictures. Ideally, the student should spend at least 4 hours a week in DigLin+, without taking more than a two day break between sessions. This improves knowledge and skill retention and helps accelerate the literacy acquisition process.

 

DigLin+ | isbn 9789024419500 | €24,90

Meer lezen

In de uitgebreide handleiding en toelichting  van de auteurs vindt u een compleet antwoord op de vraag Wat is het meest opvallende aan DigLin+? Hierin leest u alles over de opzet, het gebruik en de wetenschappelijk verantwoording  van DigLin+.