Brilliantly written and highly contextual lessons are sure to help students with language disorders become more expressive and effective communicators.
- Understand the meaning of idioms, the most used of the figurative language types
- Use idioms to develop wordplay, visualization, and playful language skills
- Improve interaction with peers by understanding how and when to use idioms
Understanding and using idioms are tough for students with language disorders - until now. The depth of instruction and highly contextual lessons in this Spotlight will put your students at the top of their language game.
Based on the research of when and how students learn idioms, each chapter:
- is organized by contextual supporting theme
- uses strategies to assist students in noticing and understanding idioms
- includes examples and information to make learning "stick"
- includes in-depth practice
Chapter themes are Action, Animals, Body Parts, Clothing, and Food. The lessons focus on:
- how idioms relate to one another
- how an idiom may have a similar/opposite meaning to other idioms
- the emotions typically associated with the idiom
- relating personal experiences that reflect the meaning of an idiom
You may purchase Spotlight on Figurative Language Idioms individually or as part of the Spotlight on Figurative Language 6-book set. The 6-book set consists of:
Copyright © 2012
The research base for specific forms of figurative language comprehension and usage is sparse, but "metaphor" and "metaphoric language" have been explored to some depth. The types of figurative language presented in these books can be classified under the general umbrella of metaphor, and the evidence under that label is relevant to the series.
- Reynolds and Ortony (1980) investigated the comprehension of similes and metaphors by second- through sixth-grade typical children. They found evidence of an ability to understand figurative language by children at all grade levels when adequate contextual supports were provided (Seidenberg & Bernstein, 1986).
- Many learning-disabled children appear to have the requisite abilities and strategies for metaphoric comprehension in their cognitive repertoires but fail to spontaneously and appropriately access and apply them when they should . . . learning-disabled children often fail to spontaneously identify the need to use appropriate, cognitive processing strategies that are well within their cognitive competence (Seidenberg & Bernstein, 1986).
- Metaphoric competence reflects an individual's cognitive level, abstract reasoning ability, and linguistic competence. The likelihood of [identifying] nonliteral responses [in figurative contexts] depends primarily on these competencies but is also influenced by an individual's familiarity with the specific figurative forms being studied (Lee & Kamhi, 1990).
- The ability to understand the motives and intentions of others is essential. Assisting children with ASDs to decode figurative language may improve their social skills in relating to others (Mackay & Shaw, 2004).
- Understanding a speaker's communicative intention is a central goal of communication and involves going beyond the literal meaning of an utterance. Children who do not understand these intentions have major communicative difficulties. Often, they are rejected by their peers, further reducing opportunities for interaction. Perhaps they struggle on with their frustration and confusion unnoticed, as the people around them continue to use figurative language. Our closer attention to the specifics of their difficulties should help them when they try to work out the meanings and intentions in the figurative language of their communicative partners (Mackay & Shaw, 2004).
Spotlight on Figurative Language Idioms incorporates these principles and is also based on expert professional practice.
Lee, R.F., & Kamhi, A.G. (1990). Metaphoric competence in children with learning disabilities. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 23(8), 476-482.
Mackay, G., & Shaw, A. (2004). A comparative study of figurative language in children with autistic spectrum disorders. Child Language Teaching & Therapy, 20(1), 13-32. doi: 10.1191/0265659004ct261oa
Reynolds, R.E., & Ortony, A. (1980). Some issues in the measurement of children's comprehension of metaphorical language. Child Development, 51, 1110-1119.
Seidenberg, P.L., & Bernstein, D.K. (1986). The comprehension of similes and metaphors by learning disabled and nonlearning-disabled children. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 17, 219-229.