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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Integrating Drawing in Teaching English Language at Yumba Special School for Children with Intellectual Disabilities


Pupils with intellectual disabilities have personal, social and communication challenges as stated in DSM-5 (APA, 2013) and ICD-10 (WHO, 1992). As such, their cognition in general and language acquisition in particular are difficulties they struggle with in school. As a result, teaching them becomes cumbersome for teachers and caregivers. However, theories in the literature aver that art can be used as a tool to enhance teaching and learning of English language to pupils in the general population and pupils with intellectual disabilities in particular. The purpose of this study was to integrate drawing in teaching and learning of English Language at Yumba Special School for children with intellectual disabilities. The special school is situated in Tamale, the capital of Northern Region of Ghana. The study employed action research method where topics in English Language were taught by making pupils draw in the classroom. The researchers used six weeks to conduct the action research. Researchers observed that integrating drawing in teaching English Language do not only make learning enjoyable and interesting but also drawing gained and sustained pupils attention as they were actively involved in the learning process, even though children with intellectual disabilities are symptomatic of Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD). Therefore educators should adopt drawing integration in teaching English Language in intellectual disability learning environment.


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