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Phonemic development. Exemplar theory/view. /t/. attractor. /d/. Categorical perception. Continuous perception. Categorical perception. Categorical perception. [p]. [b]. [b]. [d]. Liberman 1957. Categorical perception. Like adult speakers of English, English infants

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Phonemic development

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exemplar theory view
Exemplar theory/view




categorical perception
Categorical perception

Continuous perception

Categorical perception

categorical perception1
Categorical perception





Liberman 1957

categorical perception2
Categorical perception

Like adult speakers of English, English infants

perceive the gradual transition from [b] to [t]


Eimas et al. 1971

categorical perception3
Categorical perception

Categorical perception is a unique human

capacity and restricted to language.

Eimas et al. 1971

categorical perception4
Categorical perception
  • Categorical perception also occurs in other species.
  • Categorical perception is not restricted to speech.
  • Categorical perception is not characteristic of all speech sounds.
phonetic assimilation
Phonetic assimilation
  • Context-free strategies
  • Context-bound strategies
phonetic assimilation1
Phonetic assimilation

[d{s] glass

[bEd] bread

[sek] snake

[h{n] hand

[da] star

Reduction of consonant cluster

phonetic assimilation2
Phonetic assimilation

[b{n] van

[d{t] that

[nEr] there

[d{k] Jack

[d{b] jam

[dEk] check

Word-initial fricatives are replaced by stops

phonetic assimilation3
Phonetic assimilation

[bOt] pot

[do] toe

[dI] kiss

Voicing of word-initial stops

phonetic assimilation4
Phonetic assimilation

[dat] duck

[det] gate

[zus] shoes

[m{ts] match

[t{b@dz] cabbage

Fronting of consonants

phonetic assimilation5
Phonetic assimilation

[nOp] knob

[b{t] bad

[dOt] dog

[duf] stove

Devoicing of final obstruents

phonetic assimilation6
Phonetic assimilation

[böt] but

[gög] big

[gök] book

[gIg] pig

[gOg] dog

[dOt] dot

[gök] duck

[gIk] stick

Harmonization of initial consonants (if the word ends in a velar consonant)

  • Exaggerated stress patterns, exaggerated intonation
  • Many repetitions
  • Many vocatives/attention getters
  • Many questions
  • Simple sentences and simple grammatical constructions
  • Basic vocabulary
  • Question-answer
  • Request-response
  • Focus of attention - response
pragmatic development
Pragmatic development

Language is an instrument. Language us used to …

  • express anger
  • ask a question
  • promise someone to do something
  • warn somebody
pragmatic development1
Pragmatic development

Language is learned in social interactions involving three important components:

  • speaker
  • hearer
  • things and events talked about
pragmatic development2
Pragmatic development

Bühler 1934 Organon Model

pragmatic development3
Pragmatic development

dyadic interactions

pragmatic development4
Pragmatic development

Triadic interactions

9-months revolution

Tomasello 1999

vocabulary development
Vocabulary development

1;2 – 1;3 First words

2;0 100-600 words

9-10 words a day

6;0 14,000 words

18;0 50,000 words

vocabulary development1
Vocabulary development

vocabulary development

vocabulary development2
Vocabulary development

What leads to the vocabulary spurt?

vocabulary development3
Vocabulary development

What leads to the vocabulary spurt?

vocabulary development4
Vocabulary development
  • The vocabulary spurt begins when children recognize the symbolic nature of language (i.e. when they recognize that everything has a name.
  • The vocabulary development is trigged by advanced articulatory skills.
vocabulary development6
Vocabulary development
  • Words referring to people daddy, mommy, baby
  • Words referring to animals dog, kitty, bird, duck
  • Words referring to body parts eye, nose, ear
  • Words referring to food banana, juice, apple, cheese
  • Words referring to toys ball, balloon, book
  • Words referring to cloths shoe, sock, hat
  • Words referring to vehicles car, truck, boat
  • Words referring to household objects bottle, keys, bath, spoon
  • Words denoting routines bye, hi, uh oh, night-night, no
  • Words denoting activities up, down, back
  • Sound imitating words woof, moo, ouch, baa baa, yum
  • Deictics that
vocabulary development7
Vocabulary development

Children’s early words function as speech acts (i.e. there is no functional distinction between words and utterances.

vocabulary development8
Vocabulary development

What do children need to understand in order to learn words?

They need to understand the symbolic nature of language.

vocabulary development9
Vocabulary development

What do children need to understand in order to learn words?

vocabulary development10
Vocabulary development

see 1. I saw Peter.

2. I see what you mean.

run 1. She is running down the stairs.

2. She ran into Peter.

car 1. vehicle

2. toy

have 1. She has a dog.

2. I have finished my work.

vocabulary development11
Vocabulary development

head of a department

head of a nail


flower head

body part

to head

head of a team

vocabulary development12
Vocabulary development






Partitioning of the conceptual space

vocabulary development15
Vocabulary development

Why do children overgeneralize word meanings?

  • Hypothesis 1: Children are not yet able to distinguish dogs from other animals.
  • Hypothesis 2: Children’s restricted vocabulary forces them to overgeneralize words.