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ERIC Number: EJ1095086
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Apr
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0090-6905
Gesture Frequency Linked Primarily to Story Length in 4-10-Year Old Children's Stories
Nicoladis, Elena; Marentette, Paula; Navarro, Samuel
Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, v45 n2 p189-204 Apr 2016
Previous studies have shown that older children gesture more while telling a story than younger children. This increase in gesture use has been attributed to increased story complexity. In adults, both narrative complexity and imagery predict gesture frequency. In this study, we tested the strength of three predictors of children's gesture use in a narrative context: age, narrative complexity (measured by discourse connectors), and use of imagery (measured by story length). French-, Spanish-, and English-speaking children between 4 and 10 years participated in this study. Including these three groups allows us to test for the generalizability of our results and for cross-linguistic differences in gesture frequency. All the children watched cartoons and retold the story. The results showed that the length of the story was a significant predictor of children's gesture rate while age and discourse connectors were not. There were no differences between language groups. One possible in interpretation of these results is that children's gesture frequency is strongly linked to activation of imagery.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A