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Language Acquisition Theory

Summary of the main points behind Language Aquisition Theory

Cory Sakai RTMS RTMS

on 26 March 2011

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Transcript of Language Acquisition Theory

Language Acquisition Theory Behaviourism:
Say what I say Innatism:
It's all in your mind Interactionism:
A little help from my friends
B. F. Skinner I believe that children learn language from listening and imitating those around them.
Lightbrown, P.M. and Spada, N. (1999) How Languages are Learned, 2nd Ed.,
Behaviour analysis of child development - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Behavior_analysis_of_child_development#cite_note-77
Skinner Picture - http://campus.dyc.edu/~drwaltz/images/Skinner.Audience.jpg
Baby face - http://tennilleking.com/main/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/14Toth.jpg
Crwawling Baby -
Parrot - http://yourenglishlessons.files.wordpress.com/2010/03/parrot.gif

Kid Brain - http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_Eco7TB0Jqvc/RczKvw2cUmI/AAAAAAAAAMQ/AMbxmdeYK8s/s1600-h/kid+brain.gif
Jean Piaget - http://pead.faced.ufrgs.br/sites/publico/eixo6/psicologiaii/JeanPiaget.jpg
Television - http://chipbruce.files.wordpress.com/2009/02/television.jpg
Talking - http://www.more4kids.info/uploads/Image/April/parenting-talking-to-child.jpg
Neoon Sign - http://www.nicolz.com/Images/neonsigns/neon_sign02_03-09-2008.jpg
Baby blocks - http://images.inmagine.com/img/blendimages/bld120/bld120461.jpg
Lev Vygotsky - http://blog.pucp.edu.pe/media/229/20080831-vygotsky-lev.jpg "I believe that children learn language from listening and imitating those around them."

Wow! I just learned to speak! But how did I learn to construct this new sentence, if I've never heard it before? = Chomsky's "Logical problem of language acquisition"

Why don't I continue to repeat words/phrases after acquiring the initial concept?

Criticisms good to explain early stages of language acquisition (eg. vocabulary)
good correspondence with "get it right in the beginning" method, implying some value and accuracy of model
supporting evidence, children showning reduced imitation of language terms/characteristics already acquired vs. more likely repitition of novel language characteristics
contrastive analysis hypothesis (CAH) suggests that SLA will be easier if similarities can be found between the two languages

Language learning is a result of:

1. Imitation
2. Practice
3. Feedback on success
4. Habit formation.
I think that the development of language is innate and sequenced, and does not have to be taught. Noam Chomsky The language is so confusing! Why don't people correct me more?!? I'll never learn to speak properly! Oh, too late. I just did. I guess I didn't need your help after all! Jean Piaget I believe that humans develop language by interacting with the environment. It is a sociological constructivist model of learning, based on a world of symbology. Everything we see and hear is a symbol that we reference to make our language. Listen and look at all that input!

Did you know that sometimes I can make those big people do things, depending on what I say or do? It's sooo cool!

Lev Vygotsky
You know, you will advance developmentally ONLY if you interact with others. I call it your "zone of proximal development".
That's why I'm around! Right?

Hey, look at that! I am "negotiating for meaning"!

And if you were better at interacting with me by speaking slower, claifying, rephrasing, and repeating, who knows how rapidly and efficiently I could acquire another language?!?
Since the behaviourist, innatist and interationist theories all have strengths to explain particular areas of development, maybe using a combination would help to provide a more complete explanation of language development.

This corresponds well to the "get it right in the end" method which suggests that a variety of methods be combined. Interactionists can explain higher levels of interaction and interrelationships between language and concepts, and appropriate language usage. Behaviourism can explain vocabulary and grammar acquisition. Innatism can explain the development of complex grammar. A Compromise? Children are able to acquire, process and extrapolate language from birth. This imaginary "black box" or "language acquisition device" is what allows children to develop language skills that they have never experienced before. what a talented... LAD good corresponding evidence with "teach what is teachable" and some of the "just listen..." methods
helps to explain transferrence of learning to novel examples and experiences

good correspondence with, and support from the "say what you mean..." method
So, then why did I learn to speak properly when my parents speak to me like other babies do?

I love interacting with the TV, but it always tells me "good job" no matter what I say!

So, how did I learn some of these other concepts that I have never seen, heard or used with others in my interactions? Criticisms? I guess there's no point in me trying to learn French as an adult if I don't start now during my "critical period".

So, what are the steps leading through my language development, and can I do things to improve on those? What do you mean you don't know? They just mysteeriously happen?
Criticisms? You know what would work really well for my SLA? An immersive environment from an early age. Just stick me in and leave me. I'll do the rest on my own!

Oh, and also make sure that everything in the classroom is in the proper context for language too. It will make things less confusing and easier for me to form connections/relationships between different language characteristics. If you want me to learn a first or second language, remember to really drive the points home with lots of text around the class, and requiring me to say everything in the second language.

Maybe if I write things out 100 times, I'll learn it before my hand falls off.

Maybe if I repeat it 100 times, I'll be able to say it perfectly even if I don't know what it means. Suggestions Suggestions
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