Thesis Title

First Grade Students' Experience Using Web-Based Computer Games on Starfall.com to Improve Literacy Skills

Graduation Date

Summer 2009

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Document Form

Print

Degree Name

Master of Science

Program Name

Education

Program Director

Madelienne Peters, EdD

Abstract

Technology is present in most of today’s US households in many forms, including computer games. There are few empirical studies available to help determine if time spent playing computer games helps in the cognitive development of children, specifically literacy skills.

The constructivist theory formulated by Jean Piaget tells us we learn by doing and several more recent authors claim that cognitive development is enhanced by learners who are actively engaged, challenged, and motivated by the use of computer games.

This study examines a group of first graders and their experience with web-based computer reading games as found on Starfall.com. The outcome of the study shows students are excited and motivated to learn to read, and can improve their ability to understand and use phonics by playing web-based computer games.

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