An analysis of theories of language development

Piaget's cognitive theory states that children's language reflects the development of their logical thinking and reasoning skills in stages, with each period having a specific name and age reference.

During the sensorimotor stage, children experiment with sounds, and language is mostly about the auditory aspects. According to the behaviourist theory, language learning is a process of habit formation that involves a period of trial and error where the child tries and fails to use correct language until it succeeds.

Biological theory of language acquisition

Within this first year, two word utterances and two syllable words emerge. Linguist Eric Lenneberg in postulated that the critical period of language acquisition ends around the age of 12 years. In the same way that these theories have aided children and teachers in refining their learning and teaching techniques, you can use this knowledge to fine-tune your language-learning methods. Basically the care-giver is providing comprehensible contexts in which the child can acquire language Mason, For example, when the child hears the word 'sheep' he infers that it is used for the animal type and not only for that particular sheep that he saw. Fast mapping is the babies' ability to learn a lot of new things quickly. Operational conditioning refers to a method of learning that occurs through rewards and punishments for behaviour. They also are able to appreciate the multiple meanings of words and use words precisely through metaphors and puns. The researchers believe that the process of writing development does not stop when an individual leaves formal education, and again, the researchers highlight that these phases are flexible in their onset. OT suggests that the observed forms of language arise from the interaction between conflicting constraints and like other models of linguistics, contain an input and an output and a relation between the two. I think language development is really complicated. Verb meaning: when a pre-school child hears the verb 'fill', he understands it as the action 'pour' rather than the result, which is 'make full'. Pragmatics involves the rules for appropriate and effective communication.

Early phonetic processes[ edit ] As the children's ability to produce sound develops, their ability to perceive the phonetic contrast of their language develops. There is about a 5-month lag in between the two. Results supported the view that the ability to discriminate non-native phonetic contrasts reflects the degree to which the brain remains in the initial state, open and uncommitted to native language speech patterns.

The Native Language Magnet Model NLM proposed by Kuhlfocuses on infants' native phonetic categories and how they could be structured through ambient language experience.

Child language acquisition theories

Experience accumulates and the representations most often activated begin to function as perceptual magnets for other members of the category Phase 3- The perception termed perceptual magnet effect produces facilitation in native and a reduction in foreign language phonetic abilities Recently Kuhl's research has initiated the revision of the NLM and expanded the model to include native language neural commitment, which explains effects of language experience on the brain. On the other hand, it keeps the level of basic comprehension solely on the level of the initial environment. Native language neural commitment describes the brain's early coding of language and how it affects our subsequent abilities to learn the phonetic scheme of a new language. When children reach about 15—18 months of age, language acquisition flourishes. Deep breaths everyone, as we delve into the fascinatingly complicated world of language development. This theory can be applied to many aspects of human learning including speech and language. The primary reason to support interactionism is based largely on the idea that utterances make sense if the teacher is aware of the context. Another important contribution Chomsky made to linguistic studies is the theory of universal grammar. If these sounds resemble that of adult language the mother will respond with reward and the operant conditioning process begins. Babies also use phonological strategies to simplify word pronunciation.

The growth from consolidation to differentiation can be challenging for some children to grasp. They are born with the major principles of language in place, but with many parameters to set such as whether sentences in the language s they are to acquire must have explicit subjects.

Basically this means, according to Tomasello the developer of the theory, that children learn language from their language experiences and a language structure emerges from language use.

theories of language development pdf

References Bigge, M.

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Theories of Speech & Language Development