Strategies and Methods for Creating an Educational Computer Game that Teaches Idioms


This paper will explain a number of strategies and evidence-based methods which were used to ensure the effective teaching of idioms to English as a Second Language students. Idioms are low-frequency vocabulary which require explicit instruction. In such a situation, it is often difficult to engage students and promote long-term learning. One method of addressing this issue is to incorporate certainty-based marking. Also, since idioms are metaphorical, they have a heavy cultural element that makes it difficult to understand. Students are prone to transferring their own metaphorical knowledge across to the second language, and this can interfere with their learning. This game is designed to highlight the non-transferability of first language concepts to idioms. Other design features will be discussed and this paper will briefly touch upon some findings from the initial testing of this educational computer game, reporting on some of the factors that were found to influence learning.

Author Information
Amanda Muller, Flinders University, Australia

Paper Information
Conference: IICTCHawaii2016
Stream: Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL)

This paper is part of the IICTCHawaii2016 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by James Alexander Gordon