It’s a scary thought for teachers: more students in classrooms are glued to their smartphones than ever before. Which means that text speak is infiltrating everything. And this is nothing to LOL about.
With the proliferation of mobile communication (smartphones, Twitter, instant messaging), students are learning a new language—but unfortunately, it’s not improving their grammar. Some studies report that kids are increasingly ignoring grammatical conventions, correct capitalization, and even spelling, often relying on smartphones’ autocorrect functions to change incorrect words to correct alternatives. And these habits are creeping into their classwork.

It’s true that communication evolves over time. Back in the era of telegraphs, people would write the most important thing first, the second-most important thing second, and so on. This was done because stories we often cut off mid-transition. It’s now known as the “journalistic standard.” And today a similar trend exists with text messages and social media sites like Twitter: the need to respond quickly and briefly puts pressure on students to cut out the unnecessary sounds.

So, a few questions arise. Will the future of grammar and communication in classrooms be at-risk because of smartphone features like autocorrect? Or will this evolution of shortened, condensed text speak usher in a new language that’s recognized by even the Oxford dictionary? Wouldn’t that be gr8.

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