www.laspdg.org My Language, My Identity:Language Used In Households Presented by Kyomi Gregory, M.A., CCC-SLP
People First Language “People First Language puts the person before the disability and describes what a person has, not who a person is.” Kathie Snow. (n.d.) A few words about People First Language. Disability is Natural. Retrieved August 1, 2012 from http://www.disabilityisnatural.com/images/PDF/pfl-sh09.pdf
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Learning Outcomes • To identify aspects of language use within the household. • To distinguish parenting styles that impact language use within the classroom. • To identify strategies to bridge the gap between a home language and a school language.
What is a dialect? • Dialect is defined as a "neutral" term to refer to any variety of a language that is shared by a group of speakers. • Experts assert that all speakers are in fact speakers of a dialect, none of which is superior to another. Wolfram, 1991; Stubbs, 2002
Nonmainstream Dialects • Nonmainstream American English (NMAE) dialects are rule governed language systems inclusive of all aspects of language (i.e. phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics and pragmatics).
Examples of NMAE dialects • African-American English (AAE) • Southern White English (SWE) • Latino English • Cajun French
Characteristics of NMAE dialect • Differences in pronunciation, syntax, and vocabulary are most easily identified. • It also includes differences in other discourse structures such as: • Question responses and requests (Heath, 1982) • Turn taking (Au & Mason, 1983) • Intonation, formulaic expressions, and tempo (Damico & Damico, 1993)
Dialect Differences in Narratives • Cazden’s (2001) study discussed the tendency by Caucasian children to sequence their narratives topically versus African-American children that provided “episodic stories”
Narratives • Caucasian students: • sequence narratives topically • organizes a narrative according to subtopics and topics • this is the most commonly used format that is considered acceptable for narratives. Cazden, 2001
Narratives • African-American Students: • Produced “episodic stories.” • This usually involves a main character or theme. Cazden, 2001
“Home Language” • Children arrive to school with the language of their families & communities. • Many students speak a nonmainstream dialect. Cheatham, Armstrong,& Santos, 2009
Respect for Inclusion of the “Home Language” • This respect for the “home language” adheres to recommendations from many academic professional organizations, including the: • National Council on Teachers of English (NCTE; 2004, 2005) • National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC; 1995) • Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL; 1997).
“Code Switching” • Children who speak NMAE dialects often find themselves in many social contexts, in which they can utilize their ability to use both Standard American English (SAE) and their dialect. • This is known as “code switching.” • Teachers may witness children “code switching” in more or less formal contexts.
Race & Identity • Dialects are often strongly linked to race, ethnicity, and class. • This plays an important role in children’s identities. • This can be viewed as a strength & resource like any part of their home environment. Cheatham, Armstrong,& Santos, 2009
Tapping Into the “Home Language” • Current research illustrates the benefits of tapping into children’s nonstandard dialects to enhance learning. • Children’s dialects are resources from which to expand their language repertoire. • Building on what children know is an excellent approach for all children, including those that speak NMAE dialects. Chealtham, Armstrong,& Santos, 2009; Dyson & Smitherman, 2009; Murray, 1997
Tapping Into the “Home Language” • Educators need to: • bridge the gap between the home language and the school language • respect/ preserve the home language • facilitate the development of a school language.
Families’ Language Use Across Classes Class Key: PRO= Professional WC = Working Class FSA= Families Receiving State Aid Hart & Risley, 2003
Vocabulary Gap • The children’s language exposure during a 100-hour week differed with the following exposure to vocabulary: • Professional families: 215,000 words • Working-class families: 125,000 words • Families receiving state aid: 62,000 words Hart & Risley, 2003
Encouragement/ Discouragement Hart & Risley, 2003
Importance of Early Year Experiences • By age 3, children in various social classes have differences in vocabulary exposure. • From ages one to three, exists a period of great brain plasticity, during which early intervention can have long term effects. Hart & Risley, 2003
Parenting Styles • Laureau (2005) identified that parents differed by social class in the way that they define their roles in a child’s life. • Middle Class – “concerted cultivation” • Poor/ Working Class – “accomplishment of natural growth”
“Concerted Cultivation” • This encourages the child’s sense of entitlement. • This class group utilized: • Reasoning • Child contestation of adult statements • Extended negotiations between parent & child This use of language fostered language development. Laureau, 2005
“Accomplishment of Natural Growth” • This encourages an emerging sense of constraint. • This class group utilized: • Directives • Rarity of child questions • General acceptance of child directives Laureau, 2005
Educational Implications • An obstacle to children speaking NMAE dialect is an educators’ negative perception (Cheatham, Armstrong, & Santos, 2009). • Negative perceptions significantly impact a child’s motivation to learn, self-efficacy, self-confidence and their ability to feel confident speaking SAE (Blake & Cutler, 2003).
Educational Implications • Teacher’s also must be aware of the parenting styles that influence language use. • Students come into the classroom with different exposures to vocabulary based on social class.
Final Statement • Don’t denigrate the home language!
References • Au, K.H., & Mason, J.M. (1983). Cultural congruence in classroom participation structures: Achieving a balance of rights. Discourse Processes, 6, 145-167. • Blake, R. & Cutler, C. (2003). AAE and variation in teacher’s attitudes: A question of school philosophy? Linguistics and Education, 14, 163-194. • Cazden, C.B. (2001). Classroom discourse: The language of teaching and learning. Portsmouth, NH: Heineman. • Cheatham, G.A., Armstrong, J., & Santos, R.M. (2009). “Y’all Listenin?”: Accessing Children’s Dialects in Preschool YEC. Young Exceptional Children, 12(2), 2-14.
References • Damico, J.S., & Damico, S.K. (1993). Language and social skills from a diversity perspective: Considerations for the speech-language pathologist. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 24, 236-243. • Dyson, A.H., & Smitherman, G. (2009). The right (write) start: African American language and the discourseof sounding right. Teacher’s College Record, 111, 973-998. • Hart, B., & Risley, T.R. (2003). The Early Catastrophe: The 30 Million Word Gap By Age 3. American Educator, 27(1), 4-9 • Heath, S.B. (1982). Questioning at home and at school: A comparative study. In G. Spindler(Ed.), Doing the ethnography of schooling (pp. 105-131). New York: Holt, Rinehrt and Winston.
References • Laureau, A. (2005). Invisible inequaltiy: Social class and child rearing in Black and White Families (pp. 71-93). In Public & Private Families: A Reader, (4thEdition), Edited by Andrew J. Cherlin, New York: The McGraw-Hill Company. • Murray, D. (1997). TESOL speaks on Ebonics. TESOL Matters, 7(3), 1-22. • National Association for the Education of Young Children. (1995). Responding to linguistic and cultural diversity: Recommendations for effective early childhood education. Retrieved March 6, 2013, from http://www.naeyc.org/files/naeyc/file/positions/PSDIV98.PDF • National Council of Teachers of English. (2004). NCTE beliefs about the teaching of writing. Retrieved March 6, 2013, from http://www.ncte.org/positions/statements/writingbeliefs 2013, from http:// www.ncte.org/cee/positions/diverselearnersinee
References • National Council of Teachers of English. (2005). Supporting linguistically and culturally diverse learners in English education. Retrieved March 6, • Stubbs, M. (2002). Some basic linguistic concepts. In L. Delpit & J.K. Dowdy (Eds.), The skin that we speak: Thoughts on language and culture in the classroom (pp.63-86). New York: New Press. • Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (1997). Position statement of the TESOL Board on African American Vernacular English. Retrieved March 6, 2013 fromhttp://www.tesol.org/advance-the-field/position-statements/position- statement-of-the-tesol-board-on-african-american-vernacular-english- march-19 • Vigil, D.C., & Hwa-Froelich, D.A. (2004). Interaction Styles in Minority Caregivers: Implications for Intervention. Communication Disorders Quarterly, 25(3), 119-126.
References • Wolfram, W. (1991). Dialects and American English. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.
Questions? • After this webinar, you may email any content-related questions to Kyomi Gregory email@example.com • You may email any grant-related questions to Melanie Lemoinelemoinem@lsu.edu
www.laspdg.org The contents of this PowerPoint presentation were developed under a grant from the US Department of Education, #H323A110003. However those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the US Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.