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ERIC Number: ED311959
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989
Pages: 14
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Students' Language Rights.
Anderson, Edward
Before teachers begin to teach Standard American English (SAE), the schools must strive for a greater tolerance among the public and the school community toward Non-Standard American English (NSAE) dialects. Through the use of a number of motivational approaches, students retain the right to their own dialects and language while learning SAE as a new dialect. The use of positive strategies and attitudes precludes the eradication of the much needed cultural heritage of dialect variety. Such approaches include: (1) using a reading program that includes writing models from various heritages and cultures as well as mainstream authors; (2) assigning short, impromptu theme papers or essay examinations; (3) providing information about the meaning and nature of differences in American dialects, the development and history of SAE and NSAE dialects, and the importance of tolerance for NSAE dialects; (4) using daily journal writing; (5) discussing and illustrating such verbal and rhetorical strategies as jiving, rapping, and playing the dozens; and (6) role playing in small dramatic situations that require SAE. The manner in which student essays are graded and student-teacher conferences are conducted can also affect students' success with SAE dialect and give them more respect for their own dialect. Adjustments to teachers' language attitudes, classroom activities, and evaluation strategies can increase students' fluency in SAE while respecting cultural, social, and regional dialects. (VVC)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A