Do you have a student who uses the dialect African-American English? Are you unsure if his/her speech and language errors are due to a dialectical difference or a communication disorder?
Use this packet to accurately differentiate between errors that are related to dialectical influence or are due to a communication disorder.
The framework used to distinguish dialectical differences from language disorders is beneficial for all educators, and the use of this framework will result in improved instructional targets for culturally and linguistically diverse students in the general education classroom as well as more appropriate referrals for special education evaluations.
How to use this packet:
This packet contains information about speech sounds, sound patterns, and linguistic structures in African-American English. All of this information is designed to answer the most common question we all have: Are the observed speech and language patterns indicative of a dialectical difference or is something more going on?
Included in this packet is general information about African-American English, such as where it is spoken and its prevalence. Charts display shared and unique features of syntax and morphology in comparison with Standard American English. These charts provide a visual clue as to how differences between two dialects can result in what appear to be “errors” in Standard American English. Finally, in an effort to provide a rich cultural framework in which to consider this information, the packet includes a personal note from a speaker of African-American English.
For easy reference, an International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) chart is also included. Additional developmental information about English sound acquisition, language milestones, and suppression of phonological processes is included.