The pathway to English word reading in Chinese ESL children: The role of spelling

Dan LIN, Yingyi LIU, Huilin SUN, Kwok Shing Richard WONG, Siu Sze YEUNG

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The present longitudinal study investigated the role of spelling as a bridge between various reading-related predictors and English word reading in Chinese children learning English as a Second Language (ESL). One hundred and forty-one 5-year-old kindergarten children from Hong Kong, whose first language (L1) was Cantonese and second language (L2) was English, were administered tests of phonological awareness, letter knowledge, English vocabulary, spelling and English word reading at three time points (T1, T2 and T3) at 3-month intervals over a 6-month period. Nonverbal IQ was included as a control variable. The results showed that phonological awareness, letter knowledge and English vocabulary at T1 all predicted English word reading (T3) through spelling (T2). Further mediation analyses showed that, for phonological awareness and English vocabulary, full mediation effects were found. For letter knowledge, a partial mediation effect was observed. These results suggest that, in Chinese ESL kindergarteners, reading-related predictors foster word reading via spelling, a process that intersects phonology, orthography and semantics. Practical implications of these findings were also discussed. Copyright © 2016 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-103
JournalReading and Writing
Volume30
Issue number1
Early online dateJun 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2017

Fingerprint

Reading
Vocabulary
mediation
vocabulary
Language
language
knowledge
kindergarten child
orthography
Hong Kong
phonology
Semantics
Longitudinal Studies
longitudinal study
semantics
Learning
present
science
learning

Citation

Lin, D., Liu, Y., Sun, H., Wong, R. K. S., & Yeung, S. S.-s. (2017). The pathway to English word reading in Chinese ESL children: The role of spelling. Reading and Writing, 30(1), 87-103.

Keywords

  • Spelling
  • English word reading
  • Phonological awareness
  • Letter
  • Vocabulary
  • ESL