Oral language and writing difficulties

by themba

Recent research coming from the University of Montreal’s School of Speech Language Pathology and Audiology has shown a connection between oral language and writing difficulties.

According to an article in Science Daily, “[c]hildren’s future writing difficulties can be identified before they even learn how to begin writing.” The researchers are interested the impact that oral language skills have on grammar and spelling learning. Their work shows that oral language is a good predictor of writing difficulties.

According to the researchers, “[t]he more children are able to use verb tense in spoken language, the more easily they can learn written language.” The data collected also “contradicts the popular belief that bilingualism at an early age can be detrimental to oral and written language learning.”

The study was conducted on 71 children between the ages of six and nine years old. About half of the children spoke one language (French) and the other was multilingual. The results of the study indicated that “first grade oral skills were predictive of second grade writing skills one year later.” The researchers found that “morphological awareness in spoken language (in which the child is able to manipulate the parts of a word and understand the rules of word formation) can predict possible spelling and grammar difficulties in written language.”