Balance Toward Language Mastery

Virginia R. Heslinga

Abstract


Problems in attaining language mastery with students from diverse language backgrounds and levels of ability confront educators around the world. Experiments, research, and experience see positive effects of adding sign language in communication methods to pre-school and K-12 education. Augmentative, alternative, interactive, accommodating, and enriching strategies using sign language aid learners in balancing the skills needed to mastery of one language or multiple languages. Theories of learning that embrace play, drama, motion, repetition, socializing, and self-efficacy connect to the options for using sign language with learners in inclusive and mainstream classes. The methodical use of sign language by this researcher-educator over two and a half decades showed signing does build thinking skills, add enjoyment, stimulate communication, expand comprehension, increase vocabulary acquisition, encourage collaboration, and helps build appreciation for cultural diversity.


Keywords


Accommodations, Autonomy, Diversity, Inclusion, Language, Neuroscience, Signing, Scaffolding.

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References


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18533/journal.v6i01.1077

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