Improving narrative writing skills through observational learning: A study of Swedish 5th-grade students

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Abstract

Observational learning is a successful method for improving writing skills in various genres. We explore effects of a five lesson intervention series based on peer observation. Fifty-five Swedish 5th-grade students aged 10-12 years followed this intervention program. The language and reading comprehension and working memory capacity were tested. The students watched short film-clips with peers working with texts. Each lesson was organised according to a theme: reader’s perception of the text, ordering of events, how to begin a story, how to end a story and how to edit a text. The students wrote four texts during the intervention. The quality of these texts was assessed by a panel of trained raters. Results show that average text quality (outcome measure), significantly improved after intervention, and that the improvement was modulated by reading and language comprehension. At a follow up occasion, however, text quality was significantly decreased.

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Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Learning
  • Other Clinical Medicine

Keywords

  • observational learning, personal narratives, writing improvement, intervention, elementary education, intervention for writing
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages20
JournalEducational Review
Early online date2018 Nov 5
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2018 Nov 5
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes

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