Pinker Chapter 9

Pinker Chapter 9 - Pinker: Language Instinct Chapter 9 Dr....

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Pinker: Language Instinct Chapter 9 Dr. Swathi Vanniarajan Ling 161: Psycholinguistics
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Pinker’s views on Child language acquisition Pinker provides explanation as to why first language acquisition happens around the age of 3 years. He also touches on “critical period hypothesis” though not in a convincing manner. Many of the issues covered in this chapter have already been learnt in Karmilloff and Karmilloff textbook. However, there are some differences between the two viewpoints. Also this chapter serves as a good revision.
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Stages in child language development The stages in language development are as follows: syllable babbling, gibberish babbling, one word utterances, two word strings or micro sentences, and sentences (three words and longer)
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Most children do not begin to talk fluently until they are three years old. Why is there such a long pre-speech post-natal period?
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All infants come into this world with linguistic skills. One of these skills is phonological decoding ability.
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For examples, Kikuyu and Spanish infants discriminate English ba’s and pa’s, which are not used in Kikuyu or Spanish and which their parents can’t tell apart.
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English learning infants under the age of 6 months can discriminate sounds in other languages, an ability which the English language speaking adults do not have.
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New born babies can discriminate the prosody of their mother’s language from other languages.
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Babies continue to learn the sounds of their language throughout the first year. By six months, they are beginning to lump together the distinct sounds that their language collapses into a single phoneme, while continuing to discriminate equivalently distinct ones that their language keeps separate.
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By ten months, the babies are no longer universal phoneticians - this happens even before they start understanding words.
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This note was uploaded on 09/08/2010 for the course LING 161 at San Jose State.

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Pinker Chapter 9 - Pinker: Language Instinct Chapter 9 Dr....

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