ERIC Number: ED356898
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
From One Spoken Word to Two: Exploring the Changing Nature of Gesture.
Butcher, Cynthia; Goldin-Meadow, Susan
This longitudinal study explored how gestures changed with with respect to speech as two children progressed from producing single words to producing two-word combinations. Two girls were followed from the production of only single words to their first production of two-word combinations. One child was followed from 14.5 to 18 months; the second child was followed from 15.5 to 22 months. Children were videotaped during spontaneous play sessions; both the mother and researcher interacted with the children. All gestures and speech produced by the children were coded. Three analyses of relationships between gesture and speech were conducted. All communications were classified as gesture alone, speech alone, or gesture and speech combined. The timing of the gesture with respect to the speech stream was determined. Finally, relationships between information conveyed by speech and information conveyed by gesture were described. The data collected suggest that the relationship between gesture and speech changes around the time children begin producing two-word combinations. Shortly before the onset of two-word communication, children begin conveying two ideas, one in gesture and one in speech, within the bounds of a single, tightly timed communicative act. Thus, young children appear to demonstrate skills necessary for two-word speech initially in communications which combine gesture and speech. (MM)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Institutes of Health (DHHS), Bethesda, MD.; Chicago Univ., IL. Dept. of Pediatrics.; National Science Foundation, Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: N/A