Writing in character learning among Chinese children: From an embodied cognition perspective

Zhengye XU, Duo LIU

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

Abstract

In the present study, 144 second-grade and 150 fourth-grade Chinese children were recruited. The influence of embodied cognition on Chinese character learning was investigated by examining the training effects of four conditions with different degrees of embodied cognition. The training conditions included 1) control (the whole character); 2) visual (children were presented with a video to show them how a given Chinese character is written); 3) air writing (children were asked to follow the video and write the Chinese character with their index finger in the air); 4) handwriting (i.e., real handwriting, children were asked to write the Chinese character with a pen on paper). The presenting time of these four conditions was equal, and children of group 2, 3, and 4 were presented with the same video. Participants were randomly arranged into four conditions by grade, after controlling their age, non-verbal intelligence, and performance of writing, working memory, Chinese character reading, and visual processing. Each child was asked to learn ten Chinese characters with extremely low frequency, after two minutes distractors, they were asked to read out these ten characters. The results showed that generally, fourth graders learned more characters than second graders, children in the air writing and handwriting group have learned more characters than ones in the control and visual group, but there was no significant difference between the air writing and handwriting group, as well as the control and visual group. For second graders, the training effects of the air writing and handwriting were significantly better than the control group, whereas they were not different with the visual group. For fourth graders, the training effects of air writing and handwriting were significantly better than the control group and visual group. However, there was no significant difference between air writing and handwriting group, neither among second graders nor fourth graders. These results helped us better understand the underlying mechanism of the association between writing and character reading in Chinese. Copyright © 2018 ICPEAL 17 - CLDC 9.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2018

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cognition
handwriting
air
learning
Group
video
intelligence
performance

Citation

Xu, Z., & Liu, D. (2018, October). Writing in character learning among Chinese children: From an embodied cognition perspective. Paper presented at The 17th International Conference on the Processing of East Asian Languages and the 9th Conference on Language, Discourse, and Cognition (ICPEAL 17 – CLDC 9), National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan.