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Implications for learning a second language: Effect on progress in school and sociability.

Devon Barnes

Language skills are fundamental to all communication and learning. Language development depends on many neuro-cognitive and environmental factors. If there is any disruption during the critical period for language development, a child’s language skills will be compromised.

Children coming to Australia as refugees face the challenge of having to learn a new language with which they must negotiate the education system. If the child has weaknesses in the use of their mother tongue, this will greatly influence the ease with which they can learn English, with resultant impact on their ability to access the Australian curriculum.
Devon’s presentation gives the audience a greater understanding of language acquisition and the factors that influence language competency, in both mother tongue and second language learning.

Recorded at the NSW Service for the Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture and Trauma Survivors (STARTTS) 
09 November 2011, New South Wales, Australia.
Visit STARTTS at :

Devon Barnes
Devon  Barnes
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Devon Barnes

Devon Barnes is the Clinical Director of the Lindfield Speech Pathology and Learning Centre which she established in 1990. She has over 40 years experience working with children and adults with speech, language, literacy and learning problems. Devon is a regular invited speaker at national and international conferences and seminars.
Devon has worked in both the public and private sectors with adults and children as both a speech pathologist and an audiologist. She has worked in hospitals, schools and community health centres, where her focus was managing children with learning and associated emotional difficulties. Her work included special schools where she treated children with hearing impairment, developmental delays, and language and learning difficulties. In the hospital environment she treated adults with neurological impairment resulting from head injuries and strokes.
Since 1988 Devon has specialised in the assessment and treatment of children with learning difficulties and auditory processing disorder. In 2000 she established LearnFast Australia Pty Ltd to distribute the Fast ForWord programs.

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