SLP Corner: The Monolingual Bilingual SLP
I’m a bilingual SLP, but when it comes to evaluating students who speak Kenyarwanda, Pashto, Tosk, and Thai, I am just as monolingual as the 95 percent of our field who self-report themselves as monolingual. Unlike many of the SLPs I talk to about this topic, I actually get excited when one of these evaluations shows up in my in-box. Over the years, we’ve put together a solid framework for evaluating students who speak a native language other than English. Today, I want to share it with you.
Understanding the Native Language and Culture
First, you need information about the student’s native language and culture. You need to know what sounds exist in the native language along with phonotactic constraints (like, you can’t start words with s-clusters in Spanish). Second, you need information about the structure of the language—things like word order, sentence structure, noun-adjective order, how the verb system works, whether articles and gender are used, what the pronoun rules are, …and so on). And third, you need information about the cultural customs for communication (like appropriate initiation of conversation between adults and children).
Read the Rest of this Article on the Bilinguistics blog
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