Saturday, February 12, 2011
The article linked above is a review "Constraint-induced Movement Therapy," a process developed for working with loss of body movement due to stroke or injury. Two features of the extensive review are of interest to us: (a) focus on the impaired hand or limb intensively (while constraining the appendage that is normal or less impaired), and (b) importance of patients doing their homework consistently--and accurate reporting. In HIPoeces work not infrequently, a learner may be able to produce a sound or phrase initially but have difficulty with producing the haptic anchor--or vice versa. It is important to focus first on all the haptic anchors (the sign-language-like strokes across the visual field); the "correct" sounds will come soon enough. The importance of homework should go without saying but there is virtually no credible published research on learner pronunciation homework. Rapid acquisition of haptically-integrated language is only possible with very carefully designed and monitored practice outside of the classroom.