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Language choice in bimodal bilingual development.

Lillo-Martin D, de Quadros RM, Chen Pichler D, Fieldsteel Z - Front Psychol (2014)

Bottom Line: Even at the earliest observations, the children produced more signed utterances with Deaf interlocutors and more speech with hearing interlocutors.However, while three of the four children produced >75% speech alone in speech target sessions, they produced <25% sign alone in sign target sessions.Our results indicate that these children are sensitive to the language used by their interlocutors, while showing considerable influence from the dominant community language.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Linguistics, University of Connecticut Storrs, CT, USA ; Haskins Laboratories New Haven, CT, USA.

ABSTRACT
Bilingual children develop sensitivity to the language used by their interlocutors at an early age, reflected in differential use of each language by the child depending on their interlocutor. Factors such as discourse context and relative language dominance in the community may mediate the degree of language differentiation in preschool age children. Bimodal bilingual children, acquiring both a sign language and a spoken language, have an even more complex situation. Their Deaf parents vary considerably in access to the spoken language. Furthermore, in addition to code-mixing and code-switching, they use code-blending-expressions in both speech and sign simultaneously-an option uniquely available to bimodal bilinguals. Code-blending is analogous to code-switching sociolinguistically, but is also a way to communicate without suppressing one language. For adult bimodal bilinguals, complete suppression of the non-selected language is cognitively demanding. We expect that bimodal bilingual children also find suppression difficult, and use blending rather than suppression in some contexts. We also expect relative community language dominance to be a factor in children's language choices. This study analyzes longitudinal spontaneous production data from four bimodal bilingual children and their Deaf and hearing interlocutors. Even at the earliest observations, the children produced more signed utterances with Deaf interlocutors and more speech with hearing interlocutors. However, while three of the four children produced >75% speech alone in speech target sessions, they produced <25% sign alone in sign target sessions. All four produced bimodal utterances in both, but more frequently in the sign sessions, potentially because they find suppression of the dominant language more difficult. Our results indicate that these children are sensitive to the language used by their interlocutors, while showing considerable influence from the dominant community language.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Bimodal bilinguals. Language choice by (A) one hearing bimodal bilingual child and (B) her interlocutors (Petitto et al., 2001) (Reproduced with permission from Cambridge University Press).
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Figure 4: Bimodal bilinguals. Language choice by (A) one hearing bimodal bilingual child and (B) her interlocutors (Petitto et al., 2001) (Reproduced with permission from Cambridge University Press).

Mentions: Several of the language mixing patterns reported by van den Bogaerde and Baker were also observed by Petitto et al. (2001) for three LSQ (Québec Sign Language)-French bimodal bilingual children and their caretakers. Like the Deaf Dutch mothers, the Deaf caretakers in the Petitto et al. (2001) study also employed a significant degree of code-mixing in their input to their koda children, although the authors did not specify the relative proportions of code-switching vs. code-blending for the parental data. The three children were observed from roughly 0;10–1;08 for the youngest child, 2;10–3;04 for the middle child, and 3;09–4;03 for the oldest child. They were filmed interacting with their Deaf parents, as well as with unfamiliar experimenters who behaved as if they were monolingual in either French or LSQ, allowing observation of the children's reactions to novel communicative environments that called for only spoken language or only sign language. As for their Dutch counterparts, code-blended utterances made up a notable percentage of the utterances these LSQ-French bilinguals addressed to their interlocutors, particularly for the two older children. Petitto et al. (2001) attributed children's degree of mixing directly to the degree of mixing in parental input, citing the relatively high percentages of mixing produced by the second bimodal bilingual subject to her parents (20–33%) and the very high percentage of mixing present in her parents' utterances (66–91%) (see Figure 4 for this child's results). In contrast, French-English comparison bilinguals in their study whose parents addressed them in only one language or the other produced virtually no mixes at all.


Language choice in bimodal bilingual development.

Lillo-Martin D, de Quadros RM, Chen Pichler D, Fieldsteel Z - Front Psychol (2014)

Bimodal bilinguals. Language choice by (A) one hearing bimodal bilingual child and (B) her interlocutors (Petitto et al., 2001) (Reproduced with permission from Cambridge University Press).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4202712&req=5

Figure 4: Bimodal bilinguals. Language choice by (A) one hearing bimodal bilingual child and (B) her interlocutors (Petitto et al., 2001) (Reproduced with permission from Cambridge University Press).
Mentions: Several of the language mixing patterns reported by van den Bogaerde and Baker were also observed by Petitto et al. (2001) for three LSQ (Québec Sign Language)-French bimodal bilingual children and their caretakers. Like the Deaf Dutch mothers, the Deaf caretakers in the Petitto et al. (2001) study also employed a significant degree of code-mixing in their input to their koda children, although the authors did not specify the relative proportions of code-switching vs. code-blending for the parental data. The three children were observed from roughly 0;10–1;08 for the youngest child, 2;10–3;04 for the middle child, and 3;09–4;03 for the oldest child. They were filmed interacting with their Deaf parents, as well as with unfamiliar experimenters who behaved as if they were monolingual in either French or LSQ, allowing observation of the children's reactions to novel communicative environments that called for only spoken language or only sign language. As for their Dutch counterparts, code-blended utterances made up a notable percentage of the utterances these LSQ-French bilinguals addressed to their interlocutors, particularly for the two older children. Petitto et al. (2001) attributed children's degree of mixing directly to the degree of mixing in parental input, citing the relatively high percentages of mixing produced by the second bimodal bilingual subject to her parents (20–33%) and the very high percentage of mixing present in her parents' utterances (66–91%) (see Figure 4 for this child's results). In contrast, French-English comparison bilinguals in their study whose parents addressed them in only one language or the other produced virtually no mixes at all.

Bottom Line: Even at the earliest observations, the children produced more signed utterances with Deaf interlocutors and more speech with hearing interlocutors.However, while three of the four children produced >75% speech alone in speech target sessions, they produced <25% sign alone in sign target sessions.Our results indicate that these children are sensitive to the language used by their interlocutors, while showing considerable influence from the dominant community language.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Linguistics, University of Connecticut Storrs, CT, USA ; Haskins Laboratories New Haven, CT, USA.

ABSTRACT
Bilingual children develop sensitivity to the language used by their interlocutors at an early age, reflected in differential use of each language by the child depending on their interlocutor. Factors such as discourse context and relative language dominance in the community may mediate the degree of language differentiation in preschool age children. Bimodal bilingual children, acquiring both a sign language and a spoken language, have an even more complex situation. Their Deaf parents vary considerably in access to the spoken language. Furthermore, in addition to code-mixing and code-switching, they use code-blending-expressions in both speech and sign simultaneously-an option uniquely available to bimodal bilinguals. Code-blending is analogous to code-switching sociolinguistically, but is also a way to communicate without suppressing one language. For adult bimodal bilinguals, complete suppression of the non-selected language is cognitively demanding. We expect that bimodal bilingual children also find suppression difficult, and use blending rather than suppression in some contexts. We also expect relative community language dominance to be a factor in children's language choices. This study analyzes longitudinal spontaneous production data from four bimodal bilingual children and their Deaf and hearing interlocutors. Even at the earliest observations, the children produced more signed utterances with Deaf interlocutors and more speech with hearing interlocutors. However, while three of the four children produced >75% speech alone in speech target sessions, they produced <25% sign alone in sign target sessions. All four produced bimodal utterances in both, but more frequently in the sign sessions, potentially because they find suppression of the dominant language more difficult. Our results indicate that these children are sensitive to the language used by their interlocutors, while showing considerable influence from the dominant community language.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus