Title: 'Play Partner Influence on Language Use of a Deaf Child '
Track: 3 - Language Acquisition and Development
Keyword(s): Language, American Sign Language, Play
Learning Objectives:
  1. Describe how deaf children use language during play
  2. Explain how play partner would influence deaf children' language use during play
  3. Plan play centers to support language and social development of young deaf children.


Most early childhood programs integrate play to support early language and emergent literacy skills. Previous research suggests that there is a strong relationship between play, language development and social development. Play partners are reported to influence the nature of play interaction and conversations (Doyle, Connolly, & Rivest, 1980; Hoff 2010; 2003). Research on Deaf children’s play indicated deaf children as less socially interactive with limited or no use of language compared to their hearing peers. The data consisted of one-year video recorded data of a deaf child, Ann. Halliday’s (1974) seven language functions were used as a guideline for documenting and coding of Ann’s language use. Quantitative analysis involved descriptive statistics while, the qualitative analysis consisted of themes derived from the data, which were supported by vignettes. The findings provided a detailed, descriptive report on the nature of Ann’s language use with various play partners. Her language use was observed to vary in relation to the play partners. The study supports the importance of early access to language in supporting language and social development. The findings provide a fresh perspective of deaf children’s play when language access is considered a critical variable. These findings benefit early childhood education and care providers to integrate play to support language and social development of young deaf children.
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Millicent Musyoka - Primary Presenter,POC
Lamar University
     Credentials: Assist. Professor
      Millicent Musyoka is Assistant professor at the Department of Deaf Studies and Deaf education at Lamar University. Dr. Musyoka completed her doctoral and masters study at Gallaudet University. Her research interest are on language acquisition and development, emergent literacy and multicultural education.

Financial - No relevant financial relationship exist.

Nonfinancial - No relevant nonfinancial relationship exist.