ERIC Number: ED099843
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1974-Nov
Reference Count: 0
Toward a Grammar of Child Language. Studies in Language Education, Report No. 12.
O'Donnell, Roy C.
A study by Brown and Fraser (1963) shows that children tend to use telegraphic speech, employing content and omitting function words. This limitation involves the grammatical or semantic complexity of the sentences. Braine (1963) attempted to formulate productive rules for the initial stages in the acquisition of syntax by identifying two classes of words: pivots and X-words. Schlesinger (1971) describes semantic structure as beginning with the speaker's intention to express something. This intention is preverbal, composed of conceptions and relations rather than morphemes or words. O'Donnell (1974) approaches child grammar through an adult grammar capable of describing both semantic and syntactic structure. Incorporating the ideas drawn from previous studies, he believes the differences between child and adult language can be accounted for by both the cognitive differences and the lack of development of the expressive component. It is concluded that recognition of the fundamental importance of role in descriptions of semantic structures can make possible further movement toward a satisfactory grammar of child language. (TS)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Georgia Univ., Athens. Dept. of Language Education.