ERIC Number: ED212175
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Oct
Reference Count: 0
Verb Nominalization and Categorization in Navajo Children's Speech.
Iris, Madelyn Anne
Verb nominalization in Navajo is a strategy by which children create category labels when the adult lexical item is not known; it allows for the creation of uniquely descriptive category labels. This study was based on a series of interviews with Navajo children aged four-and-a-half to approximately ten years, all native speakers of Navajo with limited fluency in English. The interviews were conducted in an open-ended fashion focusing on the domain of animals. The findings indicate that younger children use nominalized verbs as a means of creating category labels out of known lexical items but without any attempt to reproduce those found in adult speech. Instead, the children's categories are more descriptive in nature without reference to hierarchic or taxonomic categories. The implications of the research lead to a new perspective on the ways in which children think about the universe and integrate their knowledge into developing cognitive models. (Author)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Boston University Conference on Language Development (6th, Boston, MA, October 9-11, 1981).