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The use and function of nonverbal communication in the elementary school classroom

1 January 1995


The teacher's use of nonverbal communication in three suburban elementary school classrooms was observed. This study was conducted by using a qualitative format for collecting and analyzing data. It was found that there are seven forms of nonverbal communication that are used in the classroom these are: proxemics, spatial arrangements, environmental factors, coverbal behavior, artifacts, touch, and paralanguage. A kindergarten teacher, second grade teacher, and a fourth grade teacher were each observed for their use of these forms of nonverbal communication in their classroom. The nonverbal messages witnessed during . this study strongly agree with the seven types that have been identified in previous research. While each of the forms of nonverbal communication were observed coverbal behaviors were seen with the greatest frequency, followed by the use of proxemics and touch.


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