Advances in the Sign Language Development of Deaf Children

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The use of sign language has a long history. Indeed, humans' first languages may have been expressed through sign. Sign languages have been found around the world, even in communities without access to formal education. In addition to serving as a primary means of communication for Deaf communities, sign languages have become one of hearing students' most popular choices for second-language study. Sign languages are now accepted as complex and complete languages that are the linguistic equals of spoken languages. Sign-language research is a relatively young field, having begun fewer than 50 years ago. Since then, interest in the field has blossomed and research has become much more rigorous as demand for empirically verifiable results have increased. In the same way that cross-linguistic research has led to a better understanding of how language affects development, cross-modal research has led to a better understanding of how language is acquired. It has also provided valuable evidence on the cognitive and social development of both deaf and hearing children, excellent theoretical insights into how the human brain acquires and structures sign and spoken languages, and important information on how to promote the development of deaf children. This volume brings together the leading scholars on the acquisition and development of sign languages to present the latest theory and research on these topics. They address theoretical as well as applied questions and provide cogent summaries of what is known about early gestural development, interactive processes adapted to visual communication, linguisic structures, modality effects, and semantic, syntactic, and pragmatic development in sign.
Along with its companion volume, Advances in the Spoken Language Development of Deaf and Hard-of Hearing Children, this book will provide a deep and broad picture about what is known about deaf children's language development in a variety of situations and contexts. From this base of information, progress in research and its application will accelerate, and barriers to deaf children's full participation in the world around them will continue to be overcome.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195180947
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 9/2/2005
  • Series: Perspectives on Deafness Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 412
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 6.30 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

University of Colorado, Boulder

National Technical Institute for the Deaf

Gallaudet University

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Marc Marschark, Brenda Schick, and Patricia Elizabeth Spencer
Chapter 2. Issues of Linguistic Typology in the Study of Sign Language Development of Deaf Children, Dan I. Slobin
Chapter 3. The Development of Gesture in Hearing and Deaf Children, V. Volterra, J.M. Iverson, and M. Castrataro
Chapter 4. Patterns and Effects of Language Input to Deaf Infants and Toddlers from Deaf and Hearing Mothers, Patricia E. Spencer and Margaret Harris
Chapter 5. Acquiring a Visually-Motivated Language: Evidence from Diverse Learners, Brenda Schick
Chapter 6. Lexical Development of Deaf Children Acquiring Signed Languages, Diane Anderson
Chapter 7. Deaf Children Are Verb Attenders: Early Sign Vocabulary Development in Dutch Toddlers, Nini Hoiting
Chapter 8. Learning to Fingerspell Twice: Young Signing Children's Acquisition of Fingerspelling, Carol A. Padden
Chapter 9. Richard P. Meier
Chapter 10. Acquisition of Syntax in Signed Languages Diane Lillo-Martin and, Deborah Chen Pichler
Chapter 11. How Faces Come To Serve Grammar: The Development of Non-Manual Morphology in ASL, Judy Reilly
Chapter 12. Deaf Children's Acquisition of Modal Terms, Barbara Shaffer
Chapter 13. The Development of Narrative Skills in British Sign Language, Gary Morgan
Chapter 14. Natural Signed Language Acquisition within the Social Context of the Classroom, Jenny L. Singleton and Dianne D. Morgan

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