ERIC Number: ED434361
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999-Mar-1
Reference Count: N/A
Framing Games: An Exploration into the Speaking Activity of a Chinese-English Bilingual Child.
Nowalk, Thomas J.
A study applied an ethnography of speaking to the study of a bilingual child, with the construct of a frame as the unit of analysis. The child was observed and tape recorded playing a commercial game in Chinese with her mother and in English with her father. Both activity frames and conceptual frames were analyzed toward answering: (1) what frames were performed during game play; (2) how those frames differed between Chinese and English; (3) what conceptual frames were produced in languages spoken; and (4) how those conceptual frames differed between each language. In brief, an ethnographic perspective was applied toward describing how the organization of activity and language compared between both languages, through the play of a single game. Results indicated that each parent enacted different roles with the daughter during the play of the game. Whereas the mother (with previous game experience) performed an expert-novice role during game play, the father (with lack of experience in game playing) took a novice-expert stance with the daughter. The activity frames and conceptual frames followed accordingly, with the games in Chinese dominated by frames featuring directing and reporting on the part of the mother, while the games in English had the daughter dominating talk with informing and reporting functions of frames. Findings suggest a tight relationship between utterance, its function, and its frame for embedding topic-relationships. This hints at dual activity-conceptual systems among bilingual children, warranting further attention by educators to integrate three dimensions into language classroom instruction: grammar form, speech function, and conceptual contents. (Contains 12 figures, 33 tables, a 112-item bibliography, and function lists for the Chinese game and the English game). (Author/NKA)
Descriptors: Bilingual Education, Bilingualism, Case Studies, Chinese, Comparative Analysis, Ethnography, Games, Language Role, Play, Speech Acts
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A