Simultaneous bilingual development CHDV 493, Week 2
Goals of this lecture <ul><li>In which ways do children become bilingual early in life? </li></ul><ul><li>Do simultaneous ...
Types of Childhood Bilingualism <ul><li>Simultaneous bilingual children:  L1 and L2 are acquired together from birth </li>...
Becoming bilingual in childhood <ul><li>One person - one language </li></ul><ul><li>Home language is different from outsid...
One language system or two? <ul><li>In the past it was believed that simultaneous acquisition would  slow down  normal lan...
One language system or two? <ul><li>Unitary Language System Hypothesis  (Volterra & Taeschner 1978): Children do not start...
Unitary Language System Hypothesis
However, research in speech perception shows that … (pp.43-48) <ul><li>Infants possess  the biological capacities  to acqu...
However, research in speech perception shows that … <ul><li>2-month-old bilinguals can distinguish utterances in their two...
One language system or two? <ul><li>Differentiated Language System Hypothesis  (Genesee 1989): Children have separate lang...
Differentiated Language System Hypothesis
What does the research say? <ul><li>As of 2009, most research supports the  Differentiated Language System Hypothesis   </...
An example of syntactic differentiation in a Tagalog-Spanish-English trilingual child at 1;10 <ul><li>ENGLISH word order: ...
An example of pragmatic differentiation in a Tagalog-Spanish-English trilingual child at 1;10
Transfer or cross-linguistic influence <ul><li>Although the two languages develop separately, there might still be  transf...
Are there differences in rate of development between bi- & monolinguals? <ul><li>No systematic evidence that bilinguals ar...
Are there differences in rate of development between bi- & monolinguals? <ul><li>Idea of “double burden” for bilinguals is...
The Special Case of Vocabulary <ul><li>Toddlers and preschoolers have, in each language,  smaller vocabularies  than monol...
Language Dominance and Rate of Development <ul><li>In sum,  bilingual children can develop each language very similarly to...
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Bfla0 (With Notes)

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Bfla0 (With Notes)

  1. 1. Simultaneous bilingual development CHDV 493, Week 2
  2. 2. Goals of this lecture <ul><li>In which ways do children become bilingual early in life? </li></ul><ul><li>Do simultaneous bilinguals learn “bilingually” at first? Do they have one or separate language systems? </li></ul><ul><li>Do infants & children have cognitive limitations that make simultaneous language learning difficult? </li></ul><ul><li>Do bilinguals show the same language development stages as monolingual children? </li></ul><ul><li>Are bilingual children slower to learn language than monolinguals? </li></ul>
  3. 3. Types of Childhood Bilingualism <ul><li>Simultaneous bilingual children: L1 and L2 are acquired together from birth </li></ul><ul><li>Sequential bilingual children (or Second language learners) : L2 is acquired in childhood after L1 is already established (after age 3) </li></ul><ul><li>Whether the L2 is a majority or minority language determines success in L2 acquisition and degree of maintenance of L1 </li></ul>
  4. 4. Becoming bilingual in childhood <ul><li>One person - one language </li></ul><ul><li>Home language is different from outside the home </li></ul><ul><li>Mixed language input </li></ul><ul><li>These methods are equally successful in laying the foundations fro bilingualism </li></ul>
  5. 5. One language system or two? <ul><li>In the past it was believed that simultaneous acquisition would slow down normal language development </li></ul><ul><li>The public misperception was that the human brain is like a balloon; it cannot take too much air in (i.e. languages, knowledge) or else it can explode </li></ul>
  6. 6. One language system or two? <ul><li>Unitary Language System Hypothesis (Volterra & Taeschner 1978): Children do not start with 2 languages but rather with a single language system. They do not differentiate languages until 3 years. </li></ul><ul><li>This can be seen in: </li></ul><ul><li>their language mixing </li></ul><ul><li>what seems “random” use of their languages </li></ul>
  7. 7. Unitary Language System Hypothesis
  8. 8. However, research in speech perception shows that … (pp.43-48) <ul><li>Infants possess the biological capacities to acquire two languages as typically as one: </li></ul><ul><li>37th week-old fetuses can distinguish between unfamiliar and familiar poems they were previously exposed to (DeCasper & Spence, 1986) </li></ul><ul><li>At birth, infants prefer to listen to their mother’s than to another female’s voice (DeCasper& Fifer, 1980) </li></ul><ul><li>At birth, infants can discriminate all the sound contrasts used in the world’s languages (Jusczyk, 1985) </li></ul><ul><li>2-month-olds can distinguish utterances in their native language from those in another language, even from unfamiliar interlocutors (Mehler et al., 1988) </li></ul>
  9. 9. However, research in speech perception shows that … <ul><li>2-month-old bilinguals can distinguish utterances in their two languages (Sebastián-Gallés, 1988) </li></ul><ul><li>7-month-old English/French bilinguals can recognize words from both languages in speech before they produced their first words (Polka & Sundara, 2003) </li></ul><ul><li>Both monolingual and bilingual children’s babbling reflects the language of their parents at around 10-12 months (Maneva & Genesee, 2002) </li></ul>
  10. 10. One language system or two? <ul><li>Differentiated Language System Hypothesis (Genesee 1989): Children have separate language systems - i.e. differentiate their languages - from the outset of acquisition </li></ul><ul><li>Language mixing is caused by: </li></ul><ul><li>Vocabulary gaps </li></ul><ul><li>Parental use </li></ul>
  11. 11. Differentiated Language System Hypothesis
  12. 12. What does the research say? <ul><li>As of 2009, most research supports the Differentiated Language System Hypothesis </li></ul><ul><li>This means that bilingual children have two language systems from very early on in development </li></ul><ul><li>See pp.66-71 for specific studies on differentiation </li></ul>
  13. 13. An example of syntactic differentiation in a Tagalog-Spanish-English trilingual child at 1;10 <ul><li>ENGLISH word order: Barney is on the chair (Arg.+Pred.) </li></ul><ul><li>TAGALOG word order: nasa silya ang Barney (Pred.+Arg.) </li></ul><ul><li>SPANISH has both orders </li></ul>
  14. 14. An example of pragmatic differentiation in a Tagalog-Spanish-English trilingual child at 1;10
  15. 15. Transfer or cross-linguistic influence <ul><li>Although the two languages develop separately, there might still be transfer from one language to the other </li></ul><ul><li>Qualitative transfer results in errors not found in monolingual acquisition e.g. baby drive car blue for baby drive blue car (pg. 75) </li></ul><ul><li>Quantitative transfer results in a higher frequency of errors found in monolingual acquisition e.g. I no want broccoli for I don’t want broccoli (p.76) </li></ul>
  16. 16. Are there differences in rate of development between bi- & monolinguals? <ul><li>No systematic evidence that bilinguals are slower in critical language milestones </li></ul><ul><li>Oller et al. (1997): Bilingual children start babbling at the same time as monolinguals </li></ul><ul><li>Petitto et al. (2001): Bilinguals produce first word, first combination and first 50 words at the same time as monolinguals </li></ul><ul><li>Padilla and Liebman (1975): bilinguals between 1;7 and 2;2 are at similar stages of grammatical development as monolinguals </li></ul><ul><li> www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qU7-8Ykthk </li></ul>
  17. 17. Are there differences in rate of development between bi- & monolinguals? <ul><li>Idea of “double burden” for bilinguals is NOT supported by research </li></ul><ul><li>Research shows that bilingual children can exhibit the same rate of grammatical/ phonological development as monolinguals </li></ul><ul><li>Paradis & Genesee (1996):French-English bilingual children learn negation in French and English at the same time as monolinguals (2;6 in French; 3+ in English) </li></ul><ul><li>They develop correct verb forms in French and English at different times following monolingual French and English acquisition </li></ul>
  18. 18. The Special Case of Vocabulary <ul><li>Toddlers and preschoolers have, in each language, smaller vocabularies than monolinguals </li></ul><ul><li>Vocabulary learning depends on memorization as opposed to acquiring rules from similar structures </li></ul><ul><li>Conceptual vocabulary (list of all concepts encoded in at least one language) should be used to assess bilinguals </li></ul>
  19. 19. Language Dominance and Rate of Development <ul><li>In sum, bilingual children can develop each language very similarly to monolinguals </li></ul><ul><li>Dominant language : language in which child has more proficiency (as measured by vocabulary, MLU, fluency) and usually hears more </li></ul><ul><li>Low levels of proficiency in the non-dominant language affect rate of development (child behaves like an L2 rather than simultaneous learner) </li></ul><ul><li>If exposure is less than 25%, the result might be passive bilingualism (comprehension but no production) </li></ul>

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