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ERIC Number: ED169544
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977-Jun
Pages: 25
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Functions of Language in Educational Environments.
Pinnell, Gay Su
The many ways in which children use language are examined in this paper, and classroom implications are outlined. The first part of the paper discusses such topics as young children's focus on meaning in language, teachers' tendency to examine language in terms of form rather than meaning, and the importance of the student/teacher interaction process. It identifies the seven language functions described by M. A. K. Halliday--instrumental, regulatory, interactional, personal, imaginative, heuristic, and informative--and tells how children develop ideas about the ways language should be used in the classroom. The paper then presents transcripts of conversations of first grade children engaged in such classroom activities as looking at a book, play-acting, and building with blocks. It discusses the children's languge in relation to Halliday's categories and concludes that teachers' awareness, listening skills, and interactions with children make the critical difference in the development of a child's full range of language functions. Finally, transcripts of kindergarten children's retellings of stories are presented as evidence of young children's awareness of book language. The paper concludes by advising teachers to provide situations in which children focus on meaning and use language for their own purposes. (GT)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Conference on Language and Reading (Chicago, Illinois, June 20-22, 1977)