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INDIVIDUAL VARIATION IN THE ACQUISITION OF POSTVOCALIC /r/: DAY CARE AND SIBLING ORDER AS POTENTIAL VARIABLES

INDIVIDUAL VARIATION IN THE ACQUISITION OF POSTVOCALIC /r/: DAY CARE AND SIBLING ORDER AS... and Roberts’s (1997) analysis of new sound changes in children born in Philadelphia. These researchers provide detailed studies of children as young as 3–4 years of age and contrast the language use of the children with the language of their parents. Both Payne (1980) and Kerswill (1994, 1996) point to a mild parental effect on children’s language acquisition. Payne demonstrates that while children learn many of the features of the community into which they are born, they may not learn the more complex rules if those rules are not found in the speech of their parents. Kerswill has also discovered a considerable degree of interspeaker variation. He mentions that even among the four-year-olds in Milton Keynes, only some features show evidence of parental effect, and that for these features, there is considerable variability. In Kerswill’s study, three patterns emerged. Some of the four-year-olds in Milton Keynes accommodated in the direction of their older age-mates, some modeled features of their speech on one or the other parent, and others chose an intermediate form. This raises the obvious question of why this should be the case. The present study reports on a small set of data from four children from http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png American Speech: A Quarterly of Linguistic Usage Duke University Press

INDIVIDUAL VARIATION IN THE ACQUISITION OF POSTVOCALIC /r/: DAY CARE AND SIBLING ORDER AS POTENTIAL VARIABLES

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Publisher
Duke University Press
Copyright
Copyright 2002 by American Dialect Society
ISSN
0003-1283
eISSN
1527-2133
DOI
10.1215/00031283-77-2-184
Publisher site
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Abstract

and Roberts’s (1997) analysis of new sound changes in children born in Philadelphia. These researchers provide detailed studies of children as young as 3–4 years of age and contrast the language use of the children with the language of their parents. Both Payne (1980) and Kerswill (1994, 1996) point to a mild parental effect on children’s language acquisition. Payne demonstrates that while children learn many of the features of the community into which they are born, they may not learn the more complex rules if those rules are not found in the speech of their parents. Kerswill has also discovered a considerable degree of interspeaker variation. He mentions that even among the four-year-olds in Milton Keynes, only some features show evidence of parental effect, and that for these features, there is considerable variability. In Kerswill’s study, three patterns emerged. Some of the four-year-olds in Milton Keynes accommodated in the direction of their older age-mates, some modeled features of their speech on one or the other parent, and others chose an intermediate form. This raises the obvious question of why this should be the case. The present study reports on a small set of data from four children from

Journal

American Speech: A Quarterly of Linguistic UsageDuke University Press

Published: Jun 1, 2002

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