Language play and language learning: Creating zones of proximal development in a third-grade multilingual classroom

Ana Christina DaSilva Iddings, Steven G. McCafferty

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Many studies attest to the importance of language play in first-language development; few investigations, however, have explored the relationship between language play and second-language (L2) learning, particularly with respect to children. In the study described in this chapter we investigated how language play created zones of proximal development (ZPD) for L2 learning in circumstances in which a Brazilian student with no language background in either English or Spanish entered a third-grade class in which all of the other students spoke Spanish as their first language. We were interested in gaining insights into the role of language play in developing metalinguistic awareness/knowledge and in affording meaning making through the creation of semiotic systems. In analyzing the data we followed the premises of activity theory and microgenesis, in addition to Newman and Holzman's (1993) perspective of Vygotsky's construct of the ZPD, which emphasizes transformational and revolutionary aspects of learning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationLanguage in Use
Subtitle of host publicationGeorgetown University Round Table on Languages and Linguistics series
PublisherGeorgetown University Press
Pages112-122
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)9781589010444
StatePublished - Dec 1 2005

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Arts and Humanities(all)

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    DaSilva Iddings, A. C., & McCafferty, S. G. (2005). Language play and language learning: Creating zones of proximal development in a third-grade multilingual classroom. In Language in Use: Georgetown University Round Table on Languages and Linguistics series (pp. 112-122). Georgetown University Press.