Category Archives: Articles

Stressed and Unstressed Syllables

stressed and unstressed syllables

Primary and secondary stress We have noted elsewhere (see Syllabic Consonants) that some syllables in polysyllabic words may be given more emphasis than others, i.e. they are stressed. This extra prominence is achieved predominantly, although not exclusively, by the speaker raising the pitch of the sounds that constitute the syllable. All English words have one syllable that receives primary […]

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Word Structure

word structure

Word structure in English We have seen elsewhere (see Phonological Organization) that the sound system is organized at least at three levels:  phonemic syllabic word Monosyllabic words As is apparent, the simplest words consist of just one syllable, i.e. they are monosyllabic. We have noted (see Syllables and Clusters) how some words are constructed from just one nuclear vowel, […]

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Thinking about Disability

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ABSTRACT In this article we consider how personal experience of inclusion and exclusion has been a major driving force in the development of inclusive education, with disabled adults in particular struggling to redefine their experiences of schooling. One major factor in this struggle towards redefinition has been the shift towards a social model of disability. […]

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Children’s Literacy Difficulties

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Literacy is a cultural achievement We have noted elsewhere (Communication) that all human societies that have existed have had a fully developed spoken language. However, not all societies have had a written form of their spoken language. Evolutionarily, we know that speech/spoken language developed first and that written language is a so-called cultural achievement. Indeed, […]

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Strategies for Communicating with People with Learning Disabilities

strategies for communicating with people with learning disabilities

Scope This article introduces just a few of the many ways we can improve the effectiveness of our communications with people with learning disabilities. We will discuss five strategies. Maximizing the hearing environment It is estimated that over 40% of people with a learning disability have hearing difficulties. In addition, we know that many people […]

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Living with Autism

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Personal experiences of living with autism The extracts below are about children and adults with autism. If you know someone with autism, the descriptions may well be familiar. For those of you have not had such close contact, they are designed to give an initial insight into what it is like to have autism. Parent of […]

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Autism and Theory of Mind

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Do people with autism spectrum disorders lack a theory of mind? An important challenge for psychologists working on autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) is to explain why characteristic impairments occur in three different areas of functioning social interaction communication activities and interests One strategy for explaining this three-way pattern is to identify a single underlying problem that […]

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What is autism? The word autism comes originally from ‘autos’, the Greek word for ‘self’ and means, literally, being absorbed in oneself. In 1943, the psychiatrist Leo Kanner adopted the term to describe some of his child patients: they appeared isolated from the world, withdrawn from social contact, and most had severe intellectual difficulties (Kanner, […]

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What is dyslexia? Dyslexia involves difficulties in learning to read and write. However, this is not the only form of difficulty that people with dyslexia experience. Terminology There is a wide variety of terms used to describe specific difficulties in learning to read. The original term ‘word blindness’ was rejected in the 1960s and replaced […]

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The Role of Adults in Children’s Play

the role of adults in children's play

Exploring + Discovering = Learning? Bennett, Wood and Rogers (1997) questioned the view that exploring and discovering leads to learning. They argued that children needed adults’ help to make sense of their discoveries and to make links and connections between new discoveries and their existing knowledge. Repetitive play can also be a dilemma, in that […]

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