THE INFLUENCE OF BILINGUALISM IN THE ACQUISITION OF THE GREEK LANGUAGE BY CHILDREN WITH DYSLEXIA

Dimitra Katsarou

Abstract


The question about the extent to which the acquisition of a second language at an early age affects the literacy development of the child seems to be ambiguous and depends on multiple factors both from the internal and external environment of the child. Bilingualism seems some times to affect the knowledge of the mother tongue in children with typical development, whereas some other times not. The research area, however, about children with dyslexia is very poor. Therefore, we conducted a research in order to find out the extent to which bilingual dyslexic students struggle in acquiring the second language in the Greek first and second grade. In addition, we wanted to examine the reaction and performance of those students and their monolingual dyslexic counterparts towards a special-designed test in order to come out with results which reveal which the best way to teach those students is and in which activities the students are more participative and effective. Results showed that students with bilingualism and dyslexia in their early school years are more confident and participative in tasks which include simple vocabulary items and audiovisual material. In addition, the results are even more satisfying when there is a conjunction between the words of the languages they already know with the target language. Finally, students with dyslexia respond better in tasks with simple instructions which require oral answers and not written. They are also more confident when the teacher explains in detail every aspect of the task and follows the elicitation technique which leads the students to the correct answers.

 

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dyslexia, special education, bilingualism, linguistic skills

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References


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