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Presentation at the colloquium : Workshop on Grammatical development in honor of Jürgen M. Meisel March 12-14 2009 University of Hamburg.

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Presentation on theme: "Presentation at the colloquium : Workshop on Grammatical development in honor of Jürgen M. Meisel March 12-14 2009 University of Hamburg."— Presentation transcript:


2 Presentation at the colloquium : Workshop on Grammatical development in honor of Jürgen M. Meisel March University of Hamburg

3 Early and late child L2 learners after a year in a French school. Suzanne Schlyter In collaboration with Jonas Granfeldt, Malin Ågren & Anita Thomas

4 Jürgen Meisel on cL2 acquisition Communication Paris january 2006: Age of onset in successive acquisition of bilingualism: Effects on grammatical development

5 Meisel 2006/2008 (…) Language Making Capacity which guides L1 development is not fully accessible any more to L2 learners. My claim is that it becomes inaccessible as a consequence of neural maturation, supporting thus the Critical Period Hypothesis. (…) Age of onset of acquisition is consequently argued to be the single most important factor distinguishing acquisition types. As for the age periods at which crucial changes happen, my claim is that they occur significantly earlier than is commonly assumed. (…) between age 3 and 4

6 Child L2 acquisition L1-like development before AO 6 ys: Chilla (2008) Rottweiler & Kroffke/Chilla Tracy, Gawlizek-Maiwald, Thoma Blom Prévost L2-like after AO 3-4 ys : Meisel (2006; 2008) Unsworth (2005)

7 Swedish-French child L2 learners Granfeldt, Schlyter & Kihlstedt (2007) : Phenomena studied (clearly differing in L1A and adult L2A of French) Finite vs nonfinite forms Past tense marking Gender Object clitics

8 2L1 not= cL2 cL2 = aL2 2L1 partly = L1 Granfeldt, Schlyter & Kihlstedt 2007: Child L2 learners (cL2) differ from simultaneous bilinguals (2L1) matched for MLU, VocD etc The cL2 learners (AO 3;6 – 6;6) have initial problems in French with all these phenomena, behave like adult L2 learners MLU-matched 2L1 learners behave like monolinguals (FL1) as for finite forms and past tense markings (no errors), but not always for object clitics and gender

9 This study Does the Age of Onset of French in cL2 make a difference? Studied: children with AO 3;4 (early cL2) vs 6;6 (late cL2) years of age Hypotheses Assuming a Critical Period If late cL2 has similar profile as early cL2 >> Critical Period ends before 3;6 (Meisel) If early cL2 is more L1-like and late cL2 more adult-like >> Critical period ends later than 3;5 but earlier than 6;6 (Chilla, Rothweiler)

10 Children studied -Two siblings -Both parents are Swedish-speaking -Children acquire French in Lycée Francais de Stockholm -Longitudinal study Hannes AO 6;6 (late cL2) Rachel AO 3;4 (early cL2) Compared also to -Viola, Valentine (late cL2 AO 6;6 ca) and to -Arlette (2L1, age and MLU matched with Rachel) (Work in progress: next child AO 3;0 starts school )

11 Input Teachers all French speaking Children in school: -French-Swedish bilinguals (2L1) ca 1/3 -Trilinguals Sw-Fr (+Arabic etc) ca 1/3 -French monolinguals -Swedish monolinguals (max 10%) Outside school: - Bilingual Swedish-French island ”Essingen”

12 Table 1. MATCHING at lower level: Age of onset of French; months of exposure, MLU and VocD in French (preliminary) Child recAO French age at recmonth expMLU FVocD F late cL2m 3,4 Han16;67;1 7m3,7 22 Val16;77;2 7m4,0 29 Vio16;46;11 7m2,3 23 Vio2 ”7;81y4m3,7 39 early cL2m 3,3 Rach23;54;2 9m2,9 (10) Rach3 ”4;310m3,7 21 2L1 Arl2birth3;63y6m3,2 28 Arl3 ”3;93y6m3,1 41

13 Table 2. MATCHING at higher level: Age of onset of French; months of exposure, MLU and VocD in French (preliminary) Child recAO French age at recmonth expMLU FVocD F l ate cL2m 4,8 Han2a Han2b 6;67;91y4m6,3 5, Val26;77;91y4m4,7 49 Vio2 ”7;81y4m3,7 39 Vio36;47;111y7m3,8 44 early cL2m 4,3 Rach43;54;71y3m3,6 21 Rach5 ” 4;81y4m4,9 49 2L1 Arl4birth4;24y2m 3,147 Arl54;34y3m3,3 49

14 Results Verb forms

15 A) VERB FORMS lower level Child recfinite forms %of all verbs finite forms %of Vlex only %past tense marking (marking /contexts) 3p plur (mark/cont) Late cL2 Han 1 76 (51/67) 74 (34/46)75 (6/8)- Val 1 86 (59/69) 80 (34/42)17 (1/6)- Vio 1 100* (/9)100* (/4)67 (2/3)- (Vio 2 89 (25/28)50 (3/6)60 (12/20)50(3/6)) Early cL2 Rach2 93 (65/70)84 (21/25) 12 (1/8) - Rach3 94 (96/102) 72 (34/47) 46 (6/13) - 2L1 Arl2 100 (/13) (/20) - Arl3 100 (/57) (/18) - * ’Finite forms’ are short default forms

16 A) VERB FORMS higher level Child recFin forms %of all verbs Fin forms %of Vlex only %past tense marking (mark/contexts) 3p plur (mark/con) Late cL2 Han2a Han2b (34/35) 100 (/66)(2/3) 49 (45/92) 85 (23/27) 100 (11/11) Val (50/55) 0 (/18) Vio 2 89 (25/28)50 (3/6)60 (12/20)50 (3/6) Vio 3 -- Early cL2 Rach4 94 (114/122) 94 (34/36) 71 (32/45) 50 (1/2) Rach5 99 (88/89) 96 (22/23) 90 (30/33) 11 ( 2/18) 2L1 Arl4 100 (/58)100 (/22)100 (/13)0/1 Arl5 100 (/61)100 (/17) 95 (18/19) 1/10

17 Finite vs nonfinite verb forms ’short forms’ (finite) vs ’long forms’ (non-finite) after subject (normally clitic subject) Examples Hannes 1, late cL2 (7m expo): *CHI:et le chien qui &oua [?= voit] et [/] and the dog who sees ? *CHI: et # il # prendre # le # chat # dans # euh ça. and he take.INF the cat in that Rachel 2, early cL2 (9m expo): *INV:et qu+est+ce+que c ' est ? *CHI:ils # ça] [//] il [/] il faire ça. they that he do.INF that >> both are similar to adult L2 acquisition (diff from 2L1)

18 Past tense marking All cL2 at lower level: 12-75% marked forms. Higher level not yet perfect 2L1 Arlette perfect mastering of past tense Exemples from Rachel 2, e cL2: *INV: et qu+est+ce+que tu as fait là bas chez ? *CHI: moi ## je fais +/. *INV:alors tu avais pas dormi chez ? *CHI:moi [/] moi aussi dormir *CHI:après il a met ça dans la +... *ASS:et dans la boîte ? *CHI:il trouvé ça >> late cL2 and early cL2 similar to adL2, diff from 2L1

19 Past Tense, lower level: Difference 2L1 and e cL2 Same elicitation situation, Aux in 2L1, no Aux in cL2: 2L1 Arlette: *INV:qu+est+ce+qui s ' est passé Arlette ? *CHI:il a tombé. *INV:oui et qu+est+ce qui s ' est passé avec sa jambe [//] avec sa patte? *CHI:il a tombé. early cL2 Rachel: *INV:qu+est+ce+qui s ' est passé avec sa tête ? *CHI:il [/] il tombE. *INV:mon cochon qu+est+ce+qui s ' est passé ? *CHI:il tombE.

20 3person plural From the plural elicitation procedure ’Voyage d’Italie’ (Ågren 2008) Hannes 2, late cL2 (14m expo): *CHI:euh là y a un garçon qui avait [?] chantE *CHI:et après il vont y aller. Rachel 5, early cL2 (14m expo): *INV:le soir, qu' est ce qu' elles vont faire ? *CHI:ils va manger. >> Rachel early cL2 : like adL2 or like age-matched 2L1?

21 Result Verb forms, summary Early cL2 Rachel = late cL2 Hannes, Valentine, Viola as for Past tense marking Finite/ nonfinite forms Possible difference as for 3ps plur: Late cL2 Hannes, Viola: OK, early cL2 Rachel problems

22 Results Object clitics

23 A) OBJECT CLITICS, lower level Child rec omissionssvo, çapreV:_Vf/ _Vinf/ _Aux Total contexts Late cL2 Han 1111 svo214 Val 107 DP3-512 Vio141 svo, 1 DP0 6 Vio Early cL2 Rach2 ?5 ça0 5 Rach ça + 3? svo 324 ? 2L1 Arl221 ca1 4 Arl34-3? 7

24 B) OBJECT CLITICS, higher level Child rec omissionssvo, çapreV:_Vf/ _Vinf/ _Aux Total contexts L cL2 Han Val Vio Vio E cL2 Rach4 8 20? ça 11 ( l’a ) 41? Rach (l’a)17? 2L1 Arl Arl

25 Exemples Rachel 3, early cL2 (10m exposure): *INV:où est ce qu ' ils sont les petits oiseaux ? *INV:là. *CHI:il chat il mange ça

26 Object clitics: results, summary early cL2 Rachel is similar to late cL2 Hannes at both levels All cL2 have initially more postverbal objects (svo) : full DP, ça, or SV-le (il mange le) >> all cL2 similar to adL2 (but possibly less clear target-deviant) 2L1 Arlette has ocl or omissions, no svo >> similar to L1

27 Results: gender

28 A) GENDER Lower level Child rec%corr gender D-N (Total) L Cl2 Han 1 75% (T 71) Val 1 75% (T 76) Vio 1 75% (T 25) Vio 2 92% (T 12) E Cl2 Rach2 65% (T 26) Rach3 63% (T 27) 2L1 Arl2 100% (T 5) Arl385% (T 79)

29 B) GENDER Higher level Child rec%corr gender D-N (Total) l cL2. Han2 85% (28/33) Val 2 75% (15/20) Vio 2 92% ((T12) Vio 3 40% (T10) e cL2. Rach4 61% (22/36) Rach5 74% (26/35) 2L1. Arl4 62% (T21) Arl5 79% (T31)

30 Results: Gender Early cL2 Rachel is similar to late cL2 Hannes etc., but possibly has less correct gender than late cL2 2L1 child Arlette has at both levels many gender errors. This differs from FL1 acquisition, but supports the data on 2L1 children from this school (GSK07)

31 General results All cL2 children, with early or late AO, develop in a similar way, more like adL2 than like L1 or 2L1 The matching 2L1 child Arlette develops, as for finite verb and tense marking, like L1 Arlette develops like earlier studied 2L1 children from this school (GSK07) in most respects, also gender and ocl, which are not target-like

32 Discussion: Late cL2 better than early cL2? Late cL2 Hannes has possibly a better/faster development than early cL2 Rachel in some respects: 3p plur marking at 14m expo (100% in Hannes but mostly unmarked in Rachel) Gender: - late cL2 Hannes 75/85% corr -early cL2 Rachel 64/ 61, 72% corr ->> against predictions that earlier is better (cf. Paradis in press: older is better)

33 General result and discussion Early cL2 learner not better or more L1-like than matching late cL2 learners. >> in favour of end of a Critical Period before 3;4 Problems: late cL2 possibly better learner than early cL2 ? Alternative proposal (GSK07): when VP,IP,CP are well developed in the child’s first language, then the child will acquire these like adL2 learners. = Developmental factor, not age factor

34 Argument for such a developed L1 position Rachel has a very well developed Swedish even before the recordings (many subordinates etc.). See next Table. Tense marking and postposed object pronouns are acquired early in Swedish. The child may try to find substitutes (default forms, postverbal pronouns) for categories acquired without yet having target forms (separation syntax – morphology in L2). The search for forms for already acquired functional (cognitive?) categories may lead to more rapid learning – late cL2 better than early cL2. To be investigated further…

35 Development in SWEDISH at start of the recordings Child rec age at rec Month expos MLU F VcD F MLU Swe VocD Swe L Cl2 Han 1 AO6;6 7;1 7m3,7 22 4,7 69 Val 17;2 7m4,0 29 4,3 35 Vio16;11 7m2,3 23 4,6 ? Vio 27;814m3,7 39 5,1 43 E Cl2 Rach2 AO3;5 4;2 9m2,9 (10) 5,3 55 Rach34;310m3,7 21 6,0 59 2L1 Arl23;6 3,2 28 3,7 63 Arl33;93;63,1 41 3,0 46

36 THANK YOU! Thanks also to LFSL school Sylvie and Anne The children and their parents The Magnus Bergwall Foundation

37 Some references Chilla, S. (2008). Erstsprache, Zweitsprache, Spezifische Sprachentwicklungsstörung? Eine Untersuchung des Erwerbs der deutschen hauptsatzstrukktur durch sukzessiv-bilinguale Kinder mit türkischer Erstsprache. Hamburg: Kovac Granfeldt, J., Schlyter,S. & Kilhstedt, M. (2007). French in cL2, 2L1 and L1 in pre-school children. PERLES 24, Studies in Romance Bilingual Acquisition – Age of Onset and Development of French and Spanish. ed. J.Granfeldt Meisel, J.M. (2008) “Child second language acquisition or successive first language acquisition?” In B. Haznedar & E. Gavruseva (eds.) Current Trends in Child Second Language Acquisition: A Generative Perspective. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. Meisel, J.M. (2008). Age of onset in successive acquisition of bilingualism: effects on grammatical development. / Âge du début de l’acquisition successive du bilinguisme : effets sur le développement grammatical. In: Kail, M., Fayol, M. & Hickmann, M. (eds): Apprentissage des langues premières et secondes. Paris: éditions CNRS Paradis, J. (in press). Maturation: for better or for worse? Comment on J.M.Meisel: Second language acquisition in early childhood. in: Zeitschrift für Sprachwissenschaft. Tracy, R. & Thoma, D. (2008). Convergence on finite V2 clauses in L1, bilingual L1 and early L2 acquisition. In: Jordens, P. & Dimroth, C. (eds): Functional elements: variation in learner systems. Studies on Language Acquisition (SOLA). Berlin & New York: Mouton de Gruyter

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