ERIC Number: ED025332
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1965-Nov-30
Reference Count: 0
Grammatical Development in Russian-Speaking Children.
Slobin, Dan I.
A contribution to the debate on innate factors in children's language acquisition is rendered by cross-linguistic comparisons of children's languages. Russian, for example, is sufficiently different from English to serve as a useful contrast. Early syntactic development is very much the same in both languages. A small class of "pivot words" and a larger open class of words are used first. Word order is quite inflexible at each of the early stages of syntactic development. Two-word sentences appear at about 1:8 (1 year, 8 months); three- or four-word sentences appear at about 1:10. Morphological markers enter with the three- and four-word sentences. The learning of morphology goes on longer than the learning of syntactic patterns. A major Russian work on language development contends that the Russian child does not master his morphology until several years beyond the age at which the American child completes his primary grammatical learning. This factor suggests that it may be more difficult to learn to speak one language natively than another, although in both, basic learning is accomplished rapidly. (WD)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Child Health and Human Development (NIH), Bethesda, MD.
Authoring Institution: Michigan Univ., Ann Arbor. Center for Human Growth and Development.