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Using textspeak

Problem-centred tasks

Using textspeak to develop the ability to interpret and compose text messages for informal communication such as sms, chats, IM, email, online discussions, etc.  

  • Communicating with peers

  • Writing a chat dialogue between two or more characters (fictional or imaginary)

  • Creating a digital gallery of memes with captions in textspeak. Peer-feedback in textspeak

  • Creating a glossary of textspeak 

  • Creating 'emojipedia'


Scaffolding activities

#1 Special language

Students explore the notion of 'textspeak' as a language for informal communication in digital spaces. They reflect on their past experiences with textspeak (e.g. how many do you know?).  They discuss its advantages and limitations.

#2 Understanding words

Students are provided with examples of words in textspeak and emoticons. They interpret their meanings. 

#3 Google's help

Students can be shown how to use google to find the meaning of unfamiliar  words in textspeak or emoticons (e.g. LOL meaning).


#4 Types

Students analyse

 similarities and differences between different words /symbols used in texting and categorise them into groups depending on their type: emoticons, acronyms, numbers, symbols  

#5 Understanding sentences

Students are provided with  examples of sentences written in textspeak. They explore their meaning.

#6 Appropriate or not

Students analyse messages in textspeak to decide whether they are appropriate for their contexts (e.g. how r u? vs. I want 2 apply 4 this job).

#7 Translating

Students  try to translate a short text into textspeak, using list of sample words if required. 

#8 Writing in textspeak

Students complete a writing task (suggested above) in textspeak relevant to the audience and context.  

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