ERIC Number: ED249789
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1984-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
On Marking Time without Aspect in Child Language.
Berman, Ruth A.; Dromi, Esther
A study of the acquisition of time-related grammatical forms in Hebrew-speaking children looked at three kinds of information: (1) relative frequency of occurrence of different verb forms at different ages; (2) the relationship between tense-marking on verbs and the semantics of verbs used at different ages, and (3) the use of time adverbs referring to present, past, or future as they interact, with verb forms. The data were drawn from 160 transcripts of adult-child interactions of 102 children aged 1.0 to 5.6 years. The basic unit of analysis was the grammatical constituent "clause." The overall results of the study confirmed previous case study findings on the centrality of imperative and infinitive forms in early verb usage. It was further noted that the three categories of present, past, and future do not correspond to three distinct slices of a timeline. The more relevant questions concern the patterning of deployment of each category by itself and in interaction with others, rather than their relative order of acquisition as children learn to mark time in their native languages. (MSE)
Descriptors: Child Language, Hebrew, Language Acquisition, Semantics, Serial Learning, Tenses (Grammar), Time Perspective, Verbs
PRCLD, Department of Linguistics, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305 ($12.00 for entire volume; individual papers not available).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Stanford Univ., CA. Dept. of Linguistics.