ERIC Number: ED385156
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Mar
Deaf Children Interacting with Deaf Parents: A Key to Understanding the Transition from Pre-Linguistic to Linguistic Communication.
McEntee, Lisa J.
This paper investigates several features of deaf mothers' behavior that have been identified as playing crucial roles in facilitating natural language acquisition in deaf children, including gaining the attention of the child, modification of the structure and content of adult language or motherese, and maintenance of communication and periods of joint attention. Issues and features of mother/child interaction in sign language and manual/visual interaction modalities are examined. Deaf mothers spend much of the first year of their child's life establishing visual communication. This may be just as, if not more important than the quality of linguistic input in child language learning. Knowledge of deaf motherese has important implications for hearing mothers of deaf children, and can be most effectively in organized intervention programs to help mother/child interaction. Through the study and comparison of the acquisition of language or communication in deaf children of deaf and hearing parents, the transition from pre-linguistic to linguistic communication can be better understood. Findings will have practical application in sensitizing hearing parents to the perceptual world of their deaf child, and insights gained may provide vision into the process of language acquisition in general. (Contains 19 references.) (NAV)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Parents; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at Sociolinguistics 10 (Lancaster, England, United Kingdom, March 1994).