University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

Emergent stories written by children while coding: How do these emerge and are they valid compositions?

Price, Colin ORCID: and Price-Mohr, R. ORCID: (2019) Emergent stories written by children while coding: How do these emerge and are they valid compositions? Journal of Writing Research, 11 (2). pp. 271-297. ISSN Print: 2030-1006 Online: 2294-3307

Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (1MB) | Preview


This paper extends our research into a novel Story-Writing-Coding engine, where Primary School children produce animated stories through writing computer code. We first discuss the theoretical basis of our engine design, drawing on Systemic Functional Grammar, embodied cognition and perceived animacy. This design aims to help children draw on the appearances of characters, props and scenery to evoke linguistic constructs leading to the emergence of stories. The second part of this paper reports on an empirical study where we aim to answer two research questions. First can compositions so produced be seen as valid compositions? To answer this question we conducted a linguistic analysis of coded stories and those written in an English classroom, and also using teacher ratings of these stories. Results indicate that while there are no significant linguistic differences between coded and English stories, coded stories are impoverished and should be seen as a first-draft to be revised in the English classroom. The second question was to probe our observation that while coding, children spontaneously told stories. Here we draw upon theories of embodied cognition and of perceived animacy. Our analysis suggests that these theories, taken together, help to explain the spontaneous emergence of stories.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information:

The full-text of the online published article can be accessed via the official URL.

The Journal of Writing Research is published as an open access journal. Open access publishing is based on a model for scholarly journal publishing that provides immediate, worldwide, barrier-free access to the full-text of all published articles. The mission of the Journal is to rapidly disseminate research in support of a greater global exchange of knowledge. No reader fee, nor an author fee is charged. We thank the Earli SIG Writing community (conference organizers) for the financial support

Authors who publish in the Journal of Writing Research retain the copyright of their work, enabling the unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction of an article in any medium, provided that the original publication in the Journal of Writing Research is properly cited.

The journal is administered by the University of Antwerp (Belgium) and is published under Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported license.

Subjects: L Education > LC Special aspects of education
P Language and Literature > PE English
Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA76 Computer software
Divisions: College of Business, Psychology and Sport > Worcester Business School
Related URLs:
Copyright Info: Open Access journal
Depositing User: Colin Price
Date Deposited: 09 Oct 2019 14:40
Last Modified: 17 Dec 2019 09:57

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item
Worcester Research and Publications is powered by EPrints 3 which is developed by the School of Electronics and Computer Science at the University of Southampton. More information and software credits.