Two studies examined whether young children use their knowledge of the spelling of base words to spell inflected and derived forms. In Study 1, 5- to 9-year-olds wrote the correct letter (s or z) more often to represent the medial /z/ sound of words derived from base forms (e.g., noisy, from noise) than to represent the medial /z/ sound of one-morpheme control words (e.g., busy). In Study 2, 7- to 9-year-olds preserved the spelling of /z/ in pseudoword base forms when writing ostensibly related inflected and derived forms (e.g., kaise-kaisy). In both studies, the children’s tendency to preserve the spelling of /z/ between base and inflected/derived words was related to their performance on analogy tasks of morphological awareness. These findings add to the growing body of evidence that children recognise and represent links of meaning between words from relatively early in their writing experience, and that morphological awareness facilitates the spelling of morphologically complex words.
Reading and Writing – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 21, 2006
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