Child EFL learners’ attitudes towards a collaborative writing task: an exploratory study

Language Teaching for Young Learners

The way learners engage with tasks can crucially impact on learning opportunities and, therefore, more attention is now being devoted to task affect. This study examines the attitudes of an underresearched population, child EFL learners, towards a collaborative dictogloss task. Thirty-two Spanish EFL children (ages 11–12) completed the task in pairs and small groups at their school, and an attitude questionnaire one week after. Results show that learners had a positive attitude towards L1 and L2 writing, collaboration in the classroom, and the task itself, regardless of their grouping condition. Although these children did not mention in their responses any explicit grammar gains as a result of the task, they considered the blend of the written and oral mode and the opportunities for peer assistance to be beneficial. These results are encouraging for the promotion of collaborative writing tasks with young learners in communicative contexts.