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Document Type:Latin Dissertation
Language of Document:English
Record Number:52506
Doc. No:TL22460
Call number:‭3181968‬
Main Entry:Patricia Millikin Lynch
Title & Author:Beloved strangers: A collaborative exploration of language and culturePatricia Millikin Lynch
College:University of South Carolina
Date:2005
Degree:Ph.D.
student score:2005
Page No:355
Abstract:As a result of the economic, social, and political climate in Somalia, many Somali Bantu were prevented from learning to read and write their own language. This study explored the experiences of one Somali Bantu refugee family as they learned to negotiate the language and culture of the United States, and described my evolving role as I assisted in literacy learning while attempting to learn their language and culture myself. This study employed an ethnographic design to explore the ways in which family members appropriated the resources at their disposal to learn English, and to document their growth as speakers, writers, and readers. I acted as a home/school liaison, spending four days a week in the family's home after school to assist with homework and to provide authentic experiences designed to engage family members in learning language, learning about language, and learning through language. In the process, I explored the ways in which different instructional materials and strategies supported or constrained the family's literacy learning. I submit that culture, language, context, relationships, and the purposes and intentions for learning all contribute to the creation of Vygotsky's (1978) Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD), but that the degree to which they influence a learning event resides within the learner. Engagement in learning is the result of both conscious and unconscious syncretism of these influences and the resources they contain. These influences are dynamic rather than static, and I suggest that over time, patterns of influence emerge that reveal a portrait of the learner and the types of interactions that create for him or her truly educative experiences (Dewey, 1938). I discovered that each family member took different kinds of risks in their engagement with language, and that timing was critical to their growth and development as speakers, writers, and readers of English. In the process, I also discovered that I was the best teacher when I became the most vulnerable learner.
Subject:Education; Culture; Literacy learning; Second language; Bilingual education; Multicultural education; Language arts; Elementary education; 0282:Multicultural education; 0279:Language arts; 0524:Elementary education; 0282:Bilingual education
Added Entry:H. Mills
Added Entry:University of South Carolina