Does Texting Hurt or Help Your Child's Literacy Skills?

By Shannon G Thu, December 3, 2009

A new study might make you think twice before you threaten to take away your child’s cell phone or limit their computer use. The National Literacy Trust has published findings that “children who blog, text, or use social networking websites have better writing skills than those who do not.”

In fact, the findings may prove the exact opposite of what many teachers and parents have worried. Jonathan Douglas, director of the National Literacy Trust, explained to BBC News that “the more forms of communications children use, the stronger their core literacy skills.”

Check out the full article here, and tell us what you think about the study!
 


Comments


Lukas - vienna Mon, December 07, 2009
I have a daughter who is 11 and was begging to get a mobile phone for her 11th birthday. I was hesitant, as was worried she would get addicted and spend too much time on the phone texting etc, but it's worked out okay. She emails her friends, uses MSN messenger, and Skype on her phone as well. We do limit her usage, encourage her to read books, and only give her a set amount of money on her phone, so she appreciates the value of money, and realises it costs. I much prefer her getting time with the teacher than the computer when at school, though. It seems a bit like an easy babysitter for the teacher to me. Chris
Chris - Arbroath Wed, December 09, 2009
This is something that is very interesting to discuss. Part of me wants to say yes it does yet the other part of me wants to say maybe it builds the correct muscles etc to protect the childs hands for the future. I really still do not have the right answer. Todd
Todd - Vermont Thu, December 10, 2009
Actually I forgot to mention I read another stufdy that said it is actually good for your child to text all,the time. So who knows.
Todd - Vermont Thu, December 10, 2009
I think texting has the potential to help our children spell, as long as they spell correctly and not fall prey to txtspk which is filled with bad spelling, numbers, and symbols. Let's face it, they have to be able to read to even get a text, so it's not all bad. As long as they're taught proper spelling, the more chances they get to use it, the better
Rob - UK Mon, December 14, 2009
My brother actually did a paper on how not only children but everyone's literacy skills can decrease because of texting too much. Although if taught properly it might still help your child learn the basics... T.K. from
T. - Lj Tue, December 15, 2009
I always thought that the advent of computer and Web technology improved my overall writing skills considerably, just because I have the opportunity to do it so much more. However, writing with a keyboard and a spell checker, as I always do now, is a slightly different skill set than doing so with a pen and paper. These days I'm much more comfortable at the keyboard, and writing out by hand seems more difficult than it used to be. But then again, computers are not going away anytime soon... I hope. ~
Stephen - New York City Tue, December 15, 2009
yeah, i cant agree with u more. texting do good to help improve kids literacy skills
Yuen - New York Fri, December 18, 2009
It may improve literacy... but may be distracting
Jay - Indiana Tue, December 22, 2009
I think the issue of texting or using sms is a great debate on how it affect children. although texting helps anyone in general, I guess to those who are developing their vocabulary I guess it has a negative effect. _______________
Greg - New York Tue, January 05, 2010
I find the article very true. Kids today opt to be more engaged online than anything else. Whether they go for texting or chatting with someone online, they utilize their time by brandishing out their mobile phones and rapidly tap-tap-tapping away. While communication is the trick to improve oral and writing skills, children may be shutting off traditional learning sources such as books. It's not surprising that it also affects their health in the process, just think about how some youngsters have been afflicted with the flu spread from using and sharing their mobile phones with others. This is definitely one great, informative resource!
Mary - Tempe, AZ Thu, January 07, 2010
It's true because when people communicate a lot, it will stimulate their brain to learn more things that will trigger them to do a lot of reading. Mikey http://www.audiobookdonlineblog.net
Mikey - Canada Sat, January 09, 2010
Lol This is what I am gone through. After writing a lot of FaceBooking, Myspacing I have very good writing skills.
Mihir - Mumbai Mon, January 11, 2010
I think this is a very big grey area. It is difficult to say to a child not to text when it promotes social interaction and social skills along with literacy but at the same time it can work in the opposite and promote bad grammar and slang. I believe technology should be embraced in all forms however children need parenting to guide them through what is right and wrong in the world of social media, texting.
Corrie - Australia Thu, January 14, 2010
Texting itself tends to make children get comfortable writing in shorthand. That's the very nature of texting, it's shorthand. Ive seen many emails and letters etc that are becoming more and more prone to texting language instead of full blown words. I think what makes kids more prone to writing in general is the repetitiveness of texting and blogging. Even though they are writing shorthand and not using the very best punctuation and grammar etc, they are texting and blogging every single day. Often many times per hour. Anything you do that often you eventually become good at and it makes it that much easier for kids to transition to pen and paper instead of a keyboard. SO good or bad, repetitiveness works.
Michael - Philadelphia, Pa Wed, February 03, 2010
I've heard so many adults - mostly the 50 and above group - who hate the "texting language". Maybe it's nostalgia, but I feel it degenerates the English language. When you read text messages and comments on websites like "I think u gotta do dat 4 sur", you really do wonder about our future's literacy and communication skills. I run a blog and get comments like that each week. What I worry about is how their writing carries over into verbal language, which makes understanding them difficult. I sound like an elderly person! I guess whatever makes children write more will improve their literacy skills in someway.
Joshua - Australia Thu, February 11, 2010
I've heard so many adults - mostly the 50 and above group - who hate the "texting language". Maybe it's nostalgia, but I feel it degenerates the English language. When you read text messages and comments on websites like "I think u gotta do dat 4 sur", you really do wonder about our future's literacy and communication skills. I run a blog http://www.towerofpower.com.au and get comments like that each week. What I worry about is how their writing carries over into verbal language, which makes understanding them difficult. I sound like an elderly person! I guess whatever makes children write more will improve their literacy skills in someway.
Joshua - Australia Thu, February 11, 2010
I really think that people that can text, email , blog and work on social networks sites can multitask also and seem to have more productivity.
Elaine - Houston Tue, February 23, 2010
I agree that texting may increase our children's writing skills but leaves them lacking in many other crucial aspects of life.
Ty - Omaha Wed, February 24, 2010

asd - asd Sat, March 06, 2010

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