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Classroom, Signing in the

  • By: David Harry Smith
  • In: The SAGE Deaf Studies Encyclopedia
  • Edited by: Genie Gertz & Patrick Boudreault
  • Subject:Physical Disabilities, Otorhinolaryngology (Ears, Nose, & Throat)

Speech is not a visual modality of signed language. Close studies of routine communication and activities will reveal what both teachers and students need to know to participate in culturally appropriate ways. Research on sociolinguistics in classrooms generally investigates (a) the structure and patterns of classroom discourse, (b) differential treatment and access to school knowledge, and (c) the instructional and learning nature of conversations. These areas often overlap and are not inclusive of all the areas of sociolinguistic classroom research.

We first need to address the issue of what it means to be a competent participant for both teachers and students. A competent participant is not only a fluent user of language but is also able to appropriately interpret social meanings and to use the language ...

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