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ERIC Number: EJ898728
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Jul
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 19
ISSN: ISSN-1538-6619
Is Teaching Sign Language in Early Childhood Classrooms Feasible for Busy Teachers and Beneficial for Children?
Brereton, Amy Elizabeth
Young Children, v65 n4 p92-97 Jul 2010
Infants' hands are ready to construct words using sign language before their mouths are ready to speak. These research findings may explain the popularity of parents and caregivers teaching and using sign language with infants and toddlers, along with speech. The advantages of using sign language with young children go beyond the infant and toddler years. Learning another language gives children a better understanding of the symbolic nature of words. Signs function as built-in pictures of words and therefore serve as clear visual referents for spoken and printed words. Daniels explains that some children need a picture of a word in order to understand the word and that these visual learners get images of words through signs. This article explores the experiences of a preschool teaching team beginning to learn and use sign language in the classroom. The teachers welcomed her into their classroom as an assistant teacher and a researcher. They answered her questions and permitted her to observe classroom members as they used sign language throughout the year. In return, the author assisted the teachers with their daily work.
National Association for the Education of Young Children. 1313 L Street NW Suite 500, Washington, DC 22205-4101. Tel: 800-424-2460; Tel: 202-232-8777; Fax: 202-328-2649; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: South Carolina