ERIC Number: ED337296
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Jun-25
Reference Count: 0
Mothers and Peers as Conversational Partners: Quantity and Quality of Talk.
French, Lucia; Pak, Meesook Kim
This study investigated the nature and extent of differences in young children's talk when they interact with mothers and peers. Sixteen girls between 2.5 and 3.5 years of age played twice with their mothers and twice with a peer. Play sessions were videotaped and coded according to measures of quantity and quality of talk. Results of measures of quantity indicated that children used a greater number of word tokens and a greater variety of word types when talking with the mother than when talking with the peer. The ratio between tokens and types was the same with each partner. The number of utterances and the number of turns taken in the conversation were greater with the mother than with the peer, while the number of utterances per turn favored the peer over the mother. Results of measures of quality indicated that children's mean length of utterance was higher with peers than with mothers. The use of subordinating conjunctions was identical with each partner. Children's use of imperatives was more frequent with peers, and their use of questions more frequent with mothers. Children were equally likely to use turnabouts, or conversational linkages that are both contingent and projective, with mothers and peers. Nine references are cited. (BC)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Conversation; Imperatives (Grammar); Length of Utterance; Questions; Turn Taking; Word Counts
Note: Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (Seattle, WA, April 18-20, 1991).