Comparing L2 Word Learning through a Tablet or Real Objects: What Benefits Learning Most?


In child-robot interactions focused on language learning, tablets are often used to structure the interaction between the robot and the child. However, it is not clear how tablets affect children’s learning gains. Real-life objects are thought to benefit children’s word learning, but it is not clear whether virtual objects provide the same learning experiences. The present study aims to find out whether there is a difference in L2 vocabulary learning gains between children who manipulate physical objects and children who manipulate pictures of the same objects on a tablet screen during a word-learning task. Preliminary data from an ongoing experiment is presented, indicating no clear benefit of real-life objects over virtual objects.