Learning to talk around the world
Posted by Danielle Wright
24 Feb 2017
We are delighted that world-renowned early years expert Professor Elena Lieven is delivering the keynote speech at our Talk to Your Baby Conference on 13 March 2017 in London. Professor Lieven is Director of the ESRC International Centre for Language and Communicative Development (LuCiD) at the University of Manchester.
In this free resource, Professor Lieven gives us a unique insight into her observations of how children learn language in different cultures around the world, including personal experiences from Papua New Guinea and further research from Mozambique, India, Peru and Canada. Professor Lieven also sheds light on her current work around how children pick up language from different speakers and how important directly addressed speech is in this process.
Professor Lieven says:
"In the 1970s, I lived for 6 months in a very remote village in Papua New Guinea. Children spent all their time with their mothers, carried in slings up to the age of about two, and after that perched on top of great piles of wood and food carried by the mothers as they walked long distances to their gardens and back.
As the mothers walked to and from the gardens they would give a running commentary to their children about who was in each garden and what they were doing. I thought this could have helped the babies learn the correct kinship names for people (a very important part of what you needed to know when you either talked to people or talked about them), as well as the words for many types of food, activities and the layout of the terrain."
If you want to hear more from Professor Elena Lieven on how children’s communicative and linguistic environments influence early speech and language, book your ticket for the Talk to Your Baby conference today.
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