Given the constantly changing social and educational landscape and the continuous advances in technology for learning/ teaching purposes, the question of what constitutes appropriate literacy pedagogy in a modern educational context has been raised by a number of researchers (see Kaminski, 2019; Kalantzis & Cope, 2012). This paper argues in favor of integrating a multimodal approach into foreign language (FL) teaching to very young learners. An innovative educational program was designed and implemented to 26 preschoolers with the ultimate purpose of examining the potential of digital storytelling (Kim, 2014; Robin, 2016) as well as its gamification dynamics (rewards, feedback, time, scores etc.), in order to highly motivate and encourage 5-year-old children to synthesize knowledge from several sources (Kapp, 2012). Special emphasis was placed on the utilization of digital technologies as a means to offer extended opportunities for the promotion of cooperative learning, to strengthen interaction and to develop vocabulary skills (see also Bakhsh, 2016). The findings revealed that digital narratives and multimodal activities a) provided children with opportunities to interact in a gamified learning environment, and b) contributed to developing their listening comprehension skills. Furthermore, interplaying on multimodal interfaces with digital material designed for educational purposes proved to enable children to better acquire FL vocabulary.
Key words: digital storytelling, educational technology, gamification, foreign language, preschoolers