Phonology

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  • Phonological development
    • Consonants at the start of a word can be pronounced but the same consonant at the end of words may be difficult to pronounce. For example the "p" and "b" at the start of push and bush are easier to pronounce that the p and b at the end of rip and bip. This may be because of the emphasis we put on the beginning of words.
    • In general, sounds that occur frequently in lots of words are acquired quicker than sounds that are less frequent.
    • Deletion: Unstressed syllables are often deleted e.g. "banana" becomes "nana", Consonant clusters are reduced e.g "snake" becomes "nake" and "sleep" becomes "seep".
    • Substitution: Another form of simplification involves substituting easier sounds for harder ones. "R" as in rock becomes "w". "Th" because d, n, or f. "T" can become "D". This is because the difficult sounds can take different articulators in which a child can not use properly yet and so they change the word for another word which requires an easier articulator.
    • Reduplication of sounds is another common phenomenon. This occurs when different sounds in a word are pronounced in the same way. e.g "Dog" and "Bog"
    • Understandin: Phonological patterns and the meanings they represent develops more quickly than the child's ability to reproduce them.
      • Berko and Brown described how a child referred to his plastic fish as a "fis". When the researcher said "Is this your fis", the child responded "No- my fis", the researcher then said "Oh, your fish?" and the child said "Yes, my fis". This shows that the child understands the word is fish, and recognises that animal by that name, he just cant pronounce the affix "h" at the end. This also shows that a childs understandin of words comes a lot quicker than a childs ability to pronounce certain words.
    • Intonation: Children seem to be consciously altering the tone and rhythm of their voices before they can speak. A range of messages can be conveyed in this way e.g questions, demands, greets and feelings. As a child starts to enter the two word stage, intonation can be used to change meaning. "My car" becomes "MY car" which indicates it belongs to her when the toy may be under threat. However, although they can use intonation, understandin it comes at a later age..
      • Cruttendens study: adults and children were asked to listen to a set of football results being read out, the results were paused after the first half of the score was said. They must then predict whether it would go on to be a draw, a home win or and away win depending on the tone of the callers voice. Children aged 7-11 had very little success where most of the success came from adults. This, in contrast to Berko and Brown's theory shows that the understandin of intonation came after their ability to consciously use it.
    • No two children acquire language in two exact same ways, and this is the same with phonology. Where one child may be able to understand intonation before another child, he may struggle with the pronunciation of other words like Berko and Brown's experiment.
  • Deletion: Unstressed syllables are often deleted e.g. "banana" becomes "nana", Consonant clusters are reduced e.g "snake" becomes "nake" and "sleep" becomes "seep".
  • Substitution: Another form of simplification involves substituting easier sounds for harder ones. "R" as in rock becomes "w". "Th" because d, n, or f. "T" can become "D". This is because the difficult sounds can take different articulators in which a child can not use properly yet and so they change the word for another word which requires an easier articulator.

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