Reduplication In Language Acquisition

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A Study on the Effectiveness of Reduplication in Language Acquisition for Malaysian Kindergarten Students Introduction Language acquisition plays an integral part for child development. Infants as early as 10 months begin developing canonical babbling, which includes the well-formed syllables essential for meaningful speech (Oller, Eilers, Neil, & Cobo-Lewis, 1998). As such, children’s book around the world have incorporated elements of canonical babbling, particularly the repetition of words known as reduplication. These books with reduplication are more commonly found in books for children around the age of 3 to 6 years old, mostly kindergarteners. Books for the later ages have fewer to no reduplication accompanying them. In fact, some of…show more content…
Specifically, it was postulated that children who frequently reduplicate would (a) use more multisyllables, (b) be better at maintaining adult syllable structure, and (c) show limited ability at final consonant production. For all children, it was further proposed that reduplication would (d) be used predominantly as a means to maintain a non -reduplicated adult syllable, and (e) characterize the speech of the youngest subjects. 1.2 Factors affecting second language acquisition Factors that contribute to language acquisition has always been ambiguous and unable to be fully determined. Palea & Bostina-Bratu (2015) conducted a study to test some of the major psychological, social and linguistic theories which have governed the field of Second Language Acquisition. According to them, age plays a crucial role in acquiring language naturally as natives. There is general belief that children and young people are better language learners than adults, based on the fact that their brains have a natural ability to absorb new information as part of their developmental growth. This assumption corresponds to the critical period hypothesis proposed by Lennerberg. According to Lenneberg, the critical period for language acquisition begins around the age of two. Research published prior…show more content…
These books are in English with the use of some reduplication words such as bounce-bounce and nighty-night. Twice a week, the teacher conducts a story-telling session as part of its reading class. The samples gather around the teacher for each session to listen to the story using these books. One book is used and completed every week by the two sessions. The researcher observes the students participation during the story-telling session. The observation includes observing the students verbal and non-verbal cues such as asking a question at an unfamiliar word or frowning (perhaps from lack of understanding). After all the four books are completed, the teacher will use 10 flash cards to test the student’s memory on some of the vocabulary used throughout all the story sessions. The flash cards are divided into two categories; pictures of reduplication words and pictures without reduplication. For example, a picture of a bouncing ball is shown, where the answer is bounce-bounce (as mentioned in The Tigger Movie book). Students will have to try and guess the meaning (verbally) of the pictures and the researcher observes if the children can associate the picture with the words they have encountered in the book. The teacher asks for everyone’s response before revealing the answer one by one. The researchers are silent at all times but takes note of the student’s

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