• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How do adults contribute to infant lexical development? Discuss.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

How do adults contribute to infant lexical development? Discuss. In order to full answer the essay question the antithetical question of 'how do adults not contribute to infant lexical development?' should be answered. How adults contribute requires a response based on the childs acquisition of empirical knowledge (knowledge existing outside of the individual) compared to innate knowledge (that which exists within us, independently of our environment) Holistically, though children seem to develop speech on their own initiative, interaction with adults provides them with the nuances of their cultural lexicon. Trevarthan (1974a) found that babies from birth to six months behaved in a way which was termed pre-speech, or pre-lexical communication. They seemed to move their mouths in what appears as an imitation of speech. When they are about two months, they make almost indistinct vowel sounds to communicate with others. Which is probably the foundation for the turn taking skills found in later conversations. Gelman & Shaltz (1977) found that adults and older children (+4 years) simplified their speech to talk to younger children, for instance by using shorter sentences, placing greater emphasis on certain words and speaking in a higher pitch. The Baby Talk Register is thought to enhance language acquisition. Cazden's (1965) 3 month studies on effective language acquisition in children showed that it was nearly enough for language to be expanded upon and corrected, but that they child acquired more complex syntax if the child's language was corrected in the context of a reply to what the child was trying to communicate. ...read more.

Middle

The theory also seems to suggest that LAD is divorced from other intellectual mechanisms, therefore simplifying what language is. The learning theory is empirically slanted, and emphasizes the role of the environment and therefore the adult in the child's lexical development. The learning theory stresses the way children are operationally conditioned to learn, through reinforcement and imitation. Skinner (1957) identified three key ways that children learnt speech: echoic responses, production of mands and tact responses. Echoic responses were the result of a child imitating sounds, which would elicit a positive response, therefore reinforcing this behaviour. A mand was a random sound that a child would produce, but which, if having some meaning for the parent, would be encouraged for future use. A tact is were a child uses an imitated word in front of a given object or entity and is rewarded. Eventually, the child's language is conditioned to be like those of the parents. However there are many flaws in with the theory, for instance, Language acquisition occurs at a high rate, the child far longer however, if they were only reinforcing and imitating what they had heard. More so, as Herriot (1970) argued children make 'virtuous errors' when applying grammatical rules which were unlearnt but creative uses of language, such as 'I swammed' or 'I ated', this he believed, was probably a result of trying to learn irregular morphemes. ...read more.

Conclusion

Reproductive assimilation is the childs ability to interact with objects and then distingiush their characteristics.When objects were being accomodated and assimilated a balancing act took place called equilibration, which much resembled homeostasis. Developmental language disorders, show that linguistic structures are to some degree innate and that a child with normal linguistic skill will benefit more from tutoring than a child who has a language disorder. However, as not all children have fixed linguistic ability, it is a mistake to assume that all children will benefit from the same types of tutoring. Therefore adults will most positively influence lexical development if they are able to recognise the strengths and weaknesses of a child in question, in this way, the Piagetian approach to recognising the limitations of a child is not wrong. However, as Vygotsky sought to show, nor is wrong to try and challenge the child with tasks that are not usual for them, as this can accelerate language development. Though it still proves controversial, it is generally acknowledged that there are some innate lexical mechanisms that manifest themselves with increased maturation. However, though an organized lexicon can be found in all human societies, there are differences, such as in dialect, and vocabulary, which are considered culture specific. This suggests that those who have already mastered a comprehensive lexicon transmit their knowledge to those who are learning, such as infants. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Child Development section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Child Development essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Compare and contrast the development theories of Piaget, Bruner and Vygotsky

    4 star(s)

    Only 35% of high school graduates in industrialised countries obtain formal operations; many people do not think formally during adulthood. (www.chiron.valdosta.edu/whuitt/col/cogsys/piaget.html) Bruners belief is that all learners should be allowed to explore experiment and discover new problems for themselves. Knowing that once they have solved the problem on there own, they will grasp a better understanding of it.

  2. Child development

    I researched these routine tests in depth and have therefore included this in my research pack. Having the uterus checked is the most important for pregnant women in my opinion, this is because the doctor can check how big the foetus is and from finding out how big the foetus

  1. Describe the processes by which genes and environment interact to influencedevelopment. Discuss the significance ...

    Differences in physical development due to chromosome differences are used to distinguish the sexes. The child's physical characteristics are alike to his parents in all essential structures like the heart and functions like the circulation. Genes are transmitted from the parents to the child.

  2. CHILD DEVELOPMENT

    9-12 Months Physical development Gross motor skills Baby can now sit up unaided with a straight back for approximately 15minutes , they are now able to turn there body's to look sideways , they can now stretch out there body's to pick up objects just out of there reach.

  1. The aim of the curriculum plan is to demonstrate how a 10 month old ...

    A Healthy Child, Healthy Choices (2003). I will be observing E when he is presented with the shape sorter and has several options on hand. Sensory Activity Cube: This activity will promote E's gross and fine motor skills because he will be using his hands to play with it.

  2. Why family structures are changing.

    house however it will lead to the father having a closer bond with the child. Also the number of women in work is increasing at a rapid pace, it will mean there will be less women having large number of children as they will not want to be taking off work for maternity leave.

  1. Describe Human Development from Conception to birth

    the placenta which is used to pass through oxygen and food through the mother?s blood stream and then goes into the baby?s bloodstream. The cord has many vessels inside it which is made up of a vein which transports blood which has oxygen and nutrients which is then passed from

  2. Child development study - I will compare my visits and look at Aroushs development ...

    Aroush will need to wear an apron 2. There should be enough space for her 3. The equipment should be suitable for her 4. A mat will be needed 5. Make sure that the plastercine isn?t toxic 6. Make sure Aroush doesn?t put it in her mouth or use it in other places Hypothesis From this activity I

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work