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Letters in Beweging 2011
Early interventions address concerns that an unacceptably large number of children are already, by four years of age, lacking in competencies fundamental to success in learning to read. Using a randomized controlled trial, the studies presented in this thesis examined program features and children’s behavioral and genetic characteristics (e.g., regulatory skills and DRD4) that might be of influence on learning effects of an exemplary computer intervention program Living Letters.
Can Living Letters stimulate the development of early literacy skills? Who benefits from the remedial computer program? Which features of the program are vital to boost development and school-entry skills?
Our conclusions include three major points. First, computer-aided instruction can be a useful tool in early literacy education, even in kindergarten-age (chapter 2). Second, the efficiency depends on the presence of immediate and individualized oral feedback. Without feedback the target program is not a stronger stimulus for learning code-related skills than daily experiences with written language (chapter 3). Third, a large part of the children benefits from the computer intervention but not all children. Susceptible children outperform the rest with a program enriched with positive, responsive interactions.