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How is context affecting Sophie's language and how is she using her language to achieve a function?

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Introduction

Extract 2: Sophie at 36 months This text, much like extract one, is a conversation between Sophie and her mother while playing together, and Sophie is now 3. We can definitely assume that although it is likely that Sophie will still use holophrastic phrases in some aspects of her speech to convey meaning, generally she will be using a more advanced level of language and has a wider syntactical knowledge [knowledge of syntax?] to communicate any action she wants to achieve. However, she still uses proto-language in order to express a feeling or meaning without words ("mm" in response to a question.). In this extract is seems that Sophie still uses all aspects of functional language, according to the theorist Michael Halliday to achieve a function, both with regulatory and informative functions (although she uses these past the two-word stage as her vocabulary as expanded and her grammar/syntax becomes more complex), "put it there", "me did some of those mummy". ...read more.

Middle

If we look at the very basic aspects of the extract, Sophie seems to now be aware of turn taking and the conversation is more fluid than Extract 1. Sophie's mother does not need to initiate or try and prompt her daughter in order to gain a response, but they are given more readily. She does however continue to use certain aspects of care giver speech in order to keep the conversation moving or to get Sophie involved. In this case she uses tag questions, "let's turn all the pieces over shall we?". In this phrase, although it's not easily noticed, due to colloquial elision, she is also using inclusive pro-nouns. At 36 months, Sophie is now at the telegraphic stage, although she does use a variety of verbs, and pro-nouns, she has a tendency to omit the functional words and keep those which are relevant to context, "when you been tidying up" in comparison to "when you have been tidying up". ...read more.

Conclusion

Sophie is demonstrating what Peccei said to be the end of the telegraphic stage, there is the absence of the auxiliary verbs in the clause, (which in this case would be "does not"), however in this extract she is also showing a higher understanding of syntax. In comparison to Peccei's theory that the children place the negative marker either at the beginning or end of the clause, Sophie has used it where it would be correct should she have also used the auxiliary verb. According the Peccei although she still refers to her mother as "mummy" initially she is also beginning to refer to her as "you" "when you been tidying up" , so instead of merely using 3rd person pro-nouns, she is also advancing towards the 2nd stage of development, referring to herself as "me", "me did good - me did some of those mummy". ...read more.

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