Influence of Second Language Cherokee Immersion on Children’s Development of Past Tense in Their First Language, English

Metalinguistic skills may develop differently in multilingual and monolingual children. This study investigated effects of immersion in Cherokee as a second language on young children’s (4;5–6;1) skills of noticing morphological forms/patterns in English, their first language, by comparing English past tense skills on two nonword and two real-word tasks between a Cherokee immersion group (N= 10) and an English-medium comparison group (N= 13). Only past finiteness (irregular forms plus overregularizations) on a real-word sentence imitation task was significantly different, with the Cherokee group performing better. The children learning Cherokee as a second language were progressing as well as their monolingual peers on English past tense marking and in one area had developed increased attention to productive morphological patterns.

from Language Learning

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Posted on June 21, 2011, in Research and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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