This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Improving Language Acquisition In Bilingual Children

3205 words - 13 pages

For most bilingual speakers, the English language is hard to navigate. Like an unknown street, not natural to them, they stumble to find the words to say what they want to say; they trip over cracks of pronunciation, taking wrong turns over careless misuse, out of context phrasing, as they attempt to follow the rules of ambiguous signage established by others. “Uh, um, hmmm, how do you say…?” A long pause follows. The image that comes to mind is of a student scratching at their head, hesitating before finally delivering the “right” word. It’s a matter of translating it to convey the correct meaning. Many bilingual speakers think out a process of word sorting that allows them to think through their vocabularies, sort, and choose a word that sounds right and is easy to say. A significant amount of bilingual speakers make every effort to learn how to say pronunciations that do not always readily translate from their native language; thus they struggle to express themselves correctly in everyday conversations. Today in the U.S., The Department of Education reports that 21% of school-age children between the ages of 5 and 17 speak a language other than English at home. Studies have shown that students that first learn to speak languages other than English often face neurolinguistic challenges, especially with the formation of organized thoughts for pronunciations and syntax. It is important that bilingual speakers in the U.S. become more comfortable and confident speaking English, but this can only be carried out and developed correctly if done at the right age and in the right environment.

What makes for better bilingual speakers? It all depends on timing. Widely acclaimed linguistic psychologists like Patricia K. Kuhl and Steven Pinker argue that early language interactions and phonological acquisition are critical for babies even in the first months following birth. In 2001, Patricia Kuhl was invited to give a T.E.D. talk, in which she presented The Linguistic Genius of Babies. Her research shows that at two months, babies are beginning to recognize and process different sounds used in language. Language acquisition is achieved by a baby’s first birthday, all through learned behavior of sounds during the critical period, at 6 to 7 months of age, where a baby successfully absorbs and retains most of this new language knowledge. Most people are under the general impression that learning a language at a young age is best, and that there are more difficulties learning a language as an adult. However, it is surprising to most that the peak of language acquisition is in such early stages, especially before most babies can even begin to repeat sounds and speak (TEDTalk: Kuhl). Research shows that from the time of birth to the age of 7, children impressively absorb and collect patterns of language unlike at any other age, despite the contrastingly different sounds that can clash as a result of exposure to more than one language.

For some first...

Find Another Essay On Improving Language Acquisition in Bilingual Children

Are Current Assessments Effective in the Identification of Specific Language Impairment in Bilingual Children?

2155 words - 9 pages cutoff scores did not correlate strongly enough with the SLP evaluations to be considered reliable. Many of the bilingual children with identified SLI made errors in the modified test but so did many of the typically developed children. Gilliam et al. (2013) concluded that it is very challenging to distinguish bilingual children with SLI from children who make grammatical errors typical of the early learning stages of second language acquisition

How Children Learn Language: Neurobiological Insights Into Language Acquisition During Childhood

2829 words - 11 pages concerned with this aspect of learning acquisition in children. One of the leading ideas based on behaviour was conveyed by Burrhus Frederic Skinner (Pinker). Skinner believed that Children learned from imitation from people around them, such as their parents and caretakers. His verbal behaviour was based on the idea that the mind consisted to sensory motor abilities including simple law of language that brought gradual changes to an organism’s

Parents' Attitudes Toward First Language Acquisition for Their Children: A Case Study of Indian Immigrant

1613 words - 7 pages Parents' Attitudes Toward First Language Acquisition for Their Children: A Case Study of Indian Immigrant Introduction In this study we explore Indian immigrant parent's attitude towards L1 acquisition for their child and their efforts to help their child acquire the best language whether it is Malayalum as their heritage language or English . Some implications for a complex relationship between the parents in terms of chose L1 for their

Critically assess the view put forward by linguist Noam Chomsky that children are "predisposed", to learn language with ease because their brains contain "language acquisition devices"

1433 words - 6 pages towards language development and learning explain it? Which one of them gives us a better explanation of why children develop language in the way they do?Language here, we are referring to the mother tongue of human beings. A baby will try out his vocal organ by making some basic sounds, known as phonemes. And then, he will combine the phonemes to form prefix or suffix that are known as morphemes. With these basic units, language development will

Second Language Acquisition in Childhood

1254 words - 5 pages (2), 89-94. Retrieved from EBSCOhost. David, A., & Wei, L. (2008). Individual differences in the lexical development of French-English bilingual children. International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, 11(5), 598-618. doi:10.2167/beb478.0 Gass, S. M., & Selinker, L. (2008). Second Language Acquisition: An Introductory Course. Google Books. Retrieved April 14, 2011, from

Code Switching in Language Acquisition

991 words - 4 pages different languages would be needed to change a lexicon? In how short a time could such a change occur? The opportunity to ponder these questions might not have occurred without the benefit of having taken this course, History of the English Language. Works Cited: Cummins, J. (1979). Linguistic interdependence and the educational development of bilingual children. Review of Educational Research, 49 (2), 222-251. Diaz-Rico, L. T. & Weed, K. Z. (2002). The cross-cultural, language, and academic development handbook. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

Language Processing in the Bilingual Brain

2344 words - 10 pages children will be explored, in order to assess whether the expansion of bilingualism is a positive influence on the world. Discussion Language Acquisition of Bilingual Children Before examining the effects of bilingualism, language acquisition of two or more radically different languages must be investigated, for this process is significant in the shaping of a bilingual’s language representation and thus the impacts of bilingualism he or she

The Process of Language Acquisition in Childhood

2953 words - 12 pages the ability to learn the fictional language. Phonological Development In the first years of life children transcend from infancy, in which they cannot speak nor comprehend language, to age four in which they begin to be able to express themselves in their own language (Hoff, 2006). Overall, the language acquisition process has the same endpoint for all capable children. The only difference in the language acquisition process between children is

Nature and Nurture in Language Acquisition

2799 words - 11 pages would be impossible for children to learn such a complicated set of rules if they were not born equipped with specialised brain structures for language acquisition. Chomsky (1968) suggests that children are born with an innate specialised mechanism in their brains (Language Acquisition Device) that allows them to identify the structure-dependence of a language and to be able to use these structures efficiently. He argues that this mechanism

Language Attainment in Children

778 words - 4 pages duration of their preschool years, often in homes where one parent communicates in one language to the child while the other parent uses another makes it is easier for a child to pick the language up(McLaughlin, 1977). The research shows that children with satisfactory acquaintance to more than one language can develop each language at a rate and in a method that is in most respects similar to the growth of monolingual children learning only one of

The Impact of Age in Relation to Second Language Acquisition

2029 words - 9 pages Illinois provided in their case study, “Critical Period Effects in Second Language Learning: The Influence of Maturational State on the Acquisition of English as a Second Language” that, “some investigators have suggested that a critical period theory must predict that children are better than adults at learning second languages” (63). In order to prove or disprove the idea that children are able to better acquire second languages at a higher rate

Similar Essays

Language Acquisition In Children Essay

1607 words - 6 pages Language Acquisition in Children Introduction The study of language development, one of the most fascinating human achievements, has a long and rich history, extending over thousands of years (Chomsky, 2000). As the nature-versus-nurture argument is inevitable to arise whenever human behaviors are discussed, it is not surprising that language experts have debated the relative influences of genetics and the environment on language

Simultaneous Bilingual Language Acquisition Essay

3704 words - 15 pages home to become a nanny for a family near by my home that are raising their children to be bilingual with the help of the mother who is fluent in Spanish as well as English. While taking care of these children, I experienced language barriers and was faced with an amazing opportunity to witness children learning two languages first hand. I plan to discover the advantages or disadvantages of children being bilingual at a young age. I would like to

Children Language Acquisition Essay

844 words - 3 pages The stages of language knowledge develop by stages, and it is suggested, each successive stage approach more approximates the grammar of the adult usage. This essay is going to illustrate the different stages in language acquisition that children pass through and elicit the theories in accordance. In the stage of "the first sounds", the noises produced by infants are simply responses to stimuli, for instance crying as a reaction to hunger

The Acquisition Of Spoken Language In Deaf Children

2203 words - 9 pages made as a deaf or hard of hearing child acquires spoken language in the first few years of their life. I hypothesis that deaf children will acquire language differently than hearing children and that they will need some type of addition assistance in order to do so. When discussing the process language acquisition in deaf children we must first look at what obstacles cause this to be such a challenge. It’s important to recognize that most deaf