ERIC Number: ED163782
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977-Aug
Reference Count: 0
The Primacy of "Goal" in the Child's Description of Motion and Location. Papers and Reports on Child Language Development, No. 13.
Farwell, Carol B.
This paper describes part of a larger study dealing with syntax and semantics of the child's early speech about motion and location. It suggests that goal, defined as the point at which a motion ends and a resulting locative state begins, is the organizing principle for the semantics of motion and location. The data presented here are from two children aged one year and one and a half years at the beginning of the study. A consideration of conflicting opinions on the goal question led to the decision to consider the children's complete language system and its changes through time for clues. Examination of the two children's speech revealed that "on" and "there" utterances are used to refer to both action and state, and that locative forms arise mainly from English adverbs and two-part verbs. Speech of older children also suggests that the definition of motion in terms of end state persists. Much recent research supports the finding that the early stages of speech seem to be goal-oriented and that as children continue their development they continue to use more explicit goal expressions. (AMH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Stanford Univ., CA. Dept. of Linguistics.