Up-to-the-minute research has revealed that mobile phone text messaging can actually improve kids' spelling skills.
Academics from Coventry University have claimed that the use of 'textisms' can improve literacy among pupils by giving them extra exposure to word composition outside the school day, reports the Telegraph.
AdvertisementThe researchers said there was "no evidence" that access to mobile phones harmed children's literacy skills and could even have a positive impact on spelling.
As part of the study, they recruited 114 children aged nine and 10 from primary schools in the Midlands.
The pupils, who did not already use a mobile phone, were split into two groups.
Half were given a handset to use for texting over weekends and during the school holidays over a 10-week period. The remaining pupils formed a control group.
Academics then gave pupils a series of reading, spelling and phonological awareness tests before and after the study. Pupils' reading and spelling was also monitored week-on-week.
The research found evidence of a "significant contribution of textism use to the children's spelling development during the study".
This study, which took account of individual differences in IQ, found higher results in test scores recorded by children using mobile phones after 10 weeks compared with the start of the study.
The conclusions come despite fears that the use of abbreviations such as "CU L8R", "Gr8" and "innit" can undermine children's reading and writing.
The study is to be published in the Journal of Computer Assisted Learning next month.