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Child Language
-Developing speech
Sophie Vickers


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Phonology and CLA
Term Addition Examples
Deletion Omitting the final Do(g), cu(p)
consonant in words.
Substitution Substituting one sound for Pip for ship
Addition Adding an extra vowel doggie
sound to the end of words
Assimilation Changing one consonant or Gog for dog
vowel for another
Reduplication Repeating a…

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Lexis and CLA
Once children can produce sounds effectively they can use these skills to form
`real' words that others can recognise.
By the first-word stage (12 months) they have already contracted their sounds to
those of their main language.
Initially proto-words have meaning for the child and their carers,…

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Early vocabulary contains content words (word classes-nouns, verbs) and function
words (determiners, prepositions and auxiliary verbs), which have a grammatical
rather than semantic function.

Semantics and CLA
-It is common for children to overextend a words meaning.

Children link objects with similar qualities. For example: Dog meaning all 4 legged…

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Mismatch statements One word sentences that E.g- Saying duck when
appears quite abstract. A looking at an empty pond
child makes a statement
about one object to

Jean Aitchison ­ Connects children's lexical and semantic development.

Type Description
Labelling Linking words to objects and
understanding they can be labelled.…

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Experiment with language by adding prefixes and suffixes to make up words and
to convert words from one word class to another (derivational morphology)

Stage Descriptors Grammatical constructions

Holophrastic One word utterance

Two-word Two words combined to Subject + Verb
create simple syntactical Verb + Object

Telegraphic Three or…

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Utterances are similar to the style and construction of a telegram in which the
function words are left out but content words are retained.
Early in the stage verb inflections, auxiliary verbs, prepositions, determiners are all
Key developments take place including the construction of questions, negatives
and pronouns.


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I am not


Pronouns can be difficult words to use accurately, as they express many things the
person, the subject/object positioning with an utterance, a number, gender and
Ursula Bellugi also found 3 stages to this:
1.) Child uses their own name (tom play)
2.) The child recognises…

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Children have to go through the process of applying rules and using exceptions to
the application of inflections and changing of tense.

Stages of linguistic development
Jean Piaget (lexis)

Stage Age (years)
Sensorimotor Up to 2 The child experiences the
physical world through the
senses and begins
classifying the things…

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Post- telegraphic (36+ months) More grammatically complex combinations

A child can be in more than one stage of development

Functions of child language
development ­ Pragmatics and CLA
John Dore

Focused more on speech acts as individual utterances

Function Description
Labelling Simply naming or identifying a person, object
or experience…


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