Early reading strategies in Irish and English: Evidence from error types
Parsons, Christine E. and Lyddy, Fiona (2009) Early reading strategies in Irish and English: Evidence from error types. Reading in a Foreign Language, 21 (1). pp. 22-36. ISSN 1539-0578
For the majority of people in Ireland, Irish is a second language acquired primarily through the schooling system. This study examined the reading strategies children used in response to English and Irish words (presented in isolation), through an analysis of their oral reading errors. Children in their 4th year of schooling attending English-medium schools, immersion schools, and Irish-medium schools in Irish-speaking (Gaeltacht) regions participated. The English-medium school children scored significantly below the other 3 groups on the Irish task; the Gaeltacht school children scored below the other 3 groups on the English task. Overall, the children made significantly more real-word errors on the English task compared with the Irish task and significantly more nonword errors on the Irish task compared with the English task. These findings suggest that children learning to read in English and Irish may adopt different strategies when faced with unfamiliar words from each language.
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