Type of Document Dissertation Author Galeano, Rebecca Ann Author's Email Address firstname.lastname@example.org URN etd-03312006-172654 Title Development of Bilingual Communicative Competence through Play: A Case Study Degree Doctor of Philosophy Department Middle and Secondary Education, Department of Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title Deborah Hasson Committee Chair Angela Lupo Anderson Committee Member Eleni Pappamihiel Committee Member Micheal Uzendoski Committee Member Keywords
- Second Language Acquistion
- Sociocultural Theory
- Language Development
Date of Defense 2006-03-01 Availability unrestricted AbstractThis study examined ways in which a simultaneously bilingual child increased her productive communicative ability in her weaker language through interaction in pretend play with more capable peers. Resting in the framework of Vygotskian sociocultural theory, this case study focused on the language development of a four year old child as she engaged in unstructured play with peers ranging from 5-9 years old. In order to create a simulated immersion setting, the researcher and her family moved to a predominately Hispanic trailer park so their daughter could interact with other children through play. Play sessions were recorded 2 to 3 times per week over a five week period. Data was transcribed and analyzed using the CHILDES Child Language Data Exchange System.
Analysis revealed ways in which peer playmates scaffolded linguistic production
and participation. Production was scaffolded as playmates worked with the less proficient learner to collaboratively construct utterances by providing direct translations in Spanish, asking leading questions, and explicitly correcting mistakes through modeling. Scaffolding of participation occurred as playmates dictated lines to the less proficient peer and used phrases which cued her participation.
Productive proficiency increased as the learner incorporated a range of
different linguistic functions into her speech: describing ongoing events in the present tense, discussing past events using the preterit, expressing wants and needs, discussing preferences, expressing feelings, asking questions, describing objects or actions using adjectives and adverbs, using command forms to affect the behavior of peers, and using possessive adjectives, possessive pronouns, and object pronouns to specifically describe events. Analysis found that this child used her peers’ speech as a mediational tool in order to verbally participate in interactions by incorporating linguistic structures, vocabulary and phrases into her own speech or repeating the speech of others. Other identified participation techniques included repetition of her utterances, asking playmates for direct translation or clarification, and using commands to gain attention in order to take the floor. Coping strategies were also identified. Findings also included ways in which playmates scaffolded the less proficient child’s participation in the telling of collective narratives by providing topics, appropriating turns, and elaborating on content.
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