ERIC Number: ED032297
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1967-Dec
Reference Count: 0
Some Linguistic Features of Five Literature Books for Children.
Davis, O. L., Jr.; Seifert, Joan G.
Elementary English, v44 n8 p878-82 Dec 1967
A linguistic analysis of five children's books, randomly selected from the "Modern Masters Books for Children" series, described the features of language found in books for beginning readers and demonstrated the value of structural analysis in reading research. Four linguistic measures were applied to each book: 1) the average number of words in a communication unit (any independent clause with its modifiers), 2) types of structural patterns within the communication units, 3) quantity and complexity of structures, and 4) movables (words, phrases, and clauses with no fixed position). Results of the study revealed that the average number of words in a communication unit ranged from 6.99 to 12.37; that the subject-verb-complement or subject-verb-direct object pattern appeared most frequently; that words and phrases were used most commonly as movables; and that subordination complexities were not above the children's grasp. The five books considered were found suitable for beginning readers, but more extensive application of such linguistic analysis to children's literature should improve elementary reading. (JM)
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