Child Language Acquisition Theorists

  • Created by: hollie14
  • Created on: 26-06-17 18:58

Noam Chomsky

  • Nativist view of language.
  • Belives language understanding is innate.
  • Believes the caregiver isn't necessary.
  • We are born with the understanding of word order, regardless to the meaning.
  • Language Acqusition Device- Hypothetical tool to help us learn language. 
  • Overgeneralisation
  • Irregualar verbs. Exceptions to the rule.
  • Disparages motherese.
  • Virtuous Errors. 
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B. F. Skinner

  • Behavourist view on language.
  • Children learn by imitating language.
  • Believed in Operant Conditioning - Using positive reinforcement to change a behaviour.
  • Repetition is a basic feature of a child's speech. 
  • Supports motherese.
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1981- 4 Stages of writing development;


  • 2-7 years old, Wrtiting and motor skills develop. Basic spelling principles.


  • 7-9 years old, Writing is the same as speech. Strings of and's in sentences.


  • 9-13 years old, Differentiate between speech and wiritng. Common errors and drafting.


  • 13- onward, Personal style is developed. 
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4 Stages of development;


  • 0-2 years old, Object permanence, mental representation of objects.


  • 2-7 years old, Symbollic thinking, egocentric thoughts.

Concrete Operational:

  • 7-11 years old, Logical thinking, converse number and mass.

Former operational:

  • 11-onwards, Develop ability to think about concepts, logical hypotheses. 
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Zone of proximal development. 

3 zones- Can't do something, Can do with assistance, Can do by self.

Words are signals:

  • Primary signal- Literal meaning 'pen'
  • Secondary signal- Words have meaning and ideas.

Children develop inner private speech by interacting with their environment. 

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3 Stages of representation:


  • 0-1 years old, Display knowledge through actions, muscle memory.


  • 1-6 years old, Learn information through images and storing.


  • 7-onwards, Words and symbols to explain situations. 

LASS- Language Acquisition Support System.

 Interactions with caregivers to encouraging object visualization. 

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