Educational CyberPlayGround

Learn about the Evolution of Language.


Educational CyberPlayGround: Music, Literacy and Technology

Integrate Literacy, Music and Technology into the Classroom.


It don't mean a thing if you ain't got that swing . . .
-- Duke Ellington
"Make everything as simple as possible, but no simpler".
-- Albert Einstein


Dr. John R. Rickford - Dialect Speakers and Education PDF
John R. Rickford (Linguistics, Stanford University) and Angela E. Rickford (Education, San Jose State University)Published in Linguistics and Education, 7.2:107-128 (1995).
[Special issue on "Dialects and Education"] SEE LINGUISTICS

Dept. of Linguistics at the Ohio State University
has obtained funding to create a database of spoken language data from a variety of languages, including Caribbean English-lexicon creoles, and we envisage expanding the database to include other creoles as well as other languages.

A Language is a Dialect with an Army and a Navy

Definition of Dialect, Pidgin and Creole

Examples of Creole Literature

When you hear someone say "ask" instead of "aks" do you think it's wrong?

"EBONICS: A Serious Analysis of African American Speech Patterns"

Language and Learning Congressional Briefing
May 8, 2000

Raising Inner - City Reading Levels -- Executive Summary
Raising Inner - City Reading Levels by Dr. William Labov
What Every Educator Needs to Know -- Executive Summary
What Every Educator Needs to Know by Lilly Wong Fillmore

William Labov also Wrote:
-- Academic Ignorance and Black Intelligence June 1972

The controversy over why children in the inner-city schools show such low educational achievement has been examined in several recent issues of The Atlantic. In the September, 1971, Atlantic, R. J. Herrnstein summarized the position of psychologists and others who believe that heredity is substantially more important than environment in determining intelligence, as measured by IQ tests. In its issue of December, 1971, The Atlantic published a number of letters (the correspondents included sociologists, anthropologists, economists, educators, and a few psychologists) taking issue with Professor Herrnstein's article. Many of those who wrote maintained that environmental factors, rather than any genetic deficit, explain the poor performance of lower- class inner- city children.

-- "How I got into linguistics, and what I get out of it,"

-- "The Organization of Dialect Diversity in North America,"

Teaching Elites in America -- E. Digby Baltzell,_Philadelphia Gentlemen:
The Making of a National Upper Class_ (1958) Baltzell was a sociologist with a deep personal knowledge of Philadelphia's elites. He contrasted "elites" whose status was won by achievement as identified in _Who's Who_, and "upper class" whose status was inherited and were identified in the social register. Baltzell, died in 1996, see the on-line Guide to his Papers, and an obituary by the University of Pennsylvania

Ronald Kephart Email
English & Foreign Languages University of North Florida
Mar 2001 Florida Times-Union, reported a study that has shown that Black children in schools are three times more likely to be tagged as needing special education as White children. The study was carried out by Harvard University's Civil Rights Project.
On the news, but not in the printed story, one researcher pointed out that one of the diagnostics used is language: children found speaking Black English do not have real language, and therefore need special treatment. (I have heard personally from teachers and school workers about this happening around Jacksonville, especially in the more rural counties.)
Apparently, in some circles, Black English is *still* being treated as a deficit of some kind, a malady needing to be remedied, shades of the educational psychologists of the 1950s and '60s. Treating BE as a normal manifestation of the human capacity for language is simply not an alternative, it seems. That this still happens despite the work of researchers like Labov, Smitherman, Dillard, Rickford and McWhorter (and others I'm sure), all of whom have written about this subject in ways that can be understood by normally educated people, is, I think, frightening.

No Argument: Thomas Keeps 5-Year Silence By ADAM LIPTAK Published: February 12, 2011
He has said, for instance, that he is self-conscious about the way he speaks. In his memoir, “My Grandfather's Son,” he wrote that he had been teased about the dialect he grew up speaking in rural Georgia. He never asked questions in college or law school, he wrote, and he was intimidated by some fellow students.

By Courtland Milloy - Washington Post - December 17, 2000
While speaking to a group of high school students last week, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas was asked why he rarely asks questions from the bench.
"Oh, boy, that's a good question," Thomas replied. His answer, however, was not good at all.
"When I was 16," Thomas said, "I was sitting as the only black kid in my class, and I had grown up speaking a kind of dialect. It's called Geechee. But some people call it Gullah now, and people praise it now. But they used to make fun of us back then. . . . And the problem was that I would correct myself mid-sentence. I was trying to speak standard English. I was thinking in standard English but speaking another language. So I learned that--I just started developing the habit of listening."

John Baugh, Professor of Education and Linguistics at Stanford University
"Members of Congress bring with them the standard dialects from their home regions and treat each other with tremendous decorum and respect." He said that he would like to "see that model extended to the educational arena." Linguistic abilities have direct economic consequences. Baugh says that linguistic diversity needs to be accepted.

Why is learning English so hard?


You will find a discussion on Metathesis with Expert Linguists on the CreoleTALK - MAILING LIST

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