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Literacy

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

Literacy is usually thought of as the ability to read and write, but a meaningful discussion about literacy development that concerns deaf children is not possible without connecting it with the acquisition of knowledge and cognitive skills as well as the cultivation of thinking, comprehension, and communication. Historically, the discourse about literacy development has been narrow, dominated by the idea that learning to read is at best difficult if the child does not know English first. The direction of the current dialogue on literacy, however, is slowly shifting to a more holistic concept of literacy that is compatible with the growing recognition that we need to capitalize on deaf students’ natural preference for learning through the visual mode. Deaf children thrive through their eyes ...

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