Child directed speech

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  • Child Directed Speech
    • Other terms
      • Motherese
      • Parentese
      • Caretaker language
      • Input language
      • Caregiver language
    • Jerome Bruner 1983
      • Proficiency in oral language provides children with a vital tool for thought
      • Without structured and fluent oral language, children will find it very difficult to think
    • Hart & Risley 1995
      • By the age of 4, children of a higher social class had heard 30 million more words directed to them than children in a lower class
    • Broad features
      • Repetition and/or repeated sentence forms
      • Higher pitch
      • Child's name rather than pronoun
      • Present tense
      • One word utterances and/or short elliptical sentences
      • Fewer verbs and modifiers
      • Concrete nouns
      • Expansions and recasts
        • Expansions = development of child's utterance into a longer, more meaningful form
        • Recasts = commenting on, extending, and rephrasing of a child's utterance
      • Closed questions
      • Exaggerated pauses giving turn taking cues
    • Phonology
      • Separate phrases
      • Longer pauses
      • Speak more slowly
      • Exaggerated 'sing song' intonation
      • Emphasise key words
      • Wider pitch
        • Distinguishes questions, statements, and commands
    • Semantics / lexis
      • Restricted vocabulary
      • Simplified vocabulary
        • Often adaptations of child's own word for things
    • Grammar
      • Fewer verbs
      • Fewer tenses
      • Shorter sentences
        • 3.7 seconds average - Phillips 1973
      • Incomplete sentences
      • More simple sentences
      • More questions and tag questions
      • Restricted range of sentence patterns
    • Pragmatics
      • Gestures and affectionate body language
      • Fewer utterances per turn
        • Allows child participation
      • Supportive language
        • Parents echo unintelligeable remarks
          • Encourage correction / clarification
      • Copy and expand upon children's utterances

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