Cultural and Environmental Effects on Language Development
CULTURAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS ON LANGUAGE DEVELOPMENT 1
Culturaland Environmental Effects on Language Development
Childrenhave different styles and speed of development of their languageskills and acquiring the language itself. It’s hard to know whatthe future holds for each child, but each one of them takes adifferent path to reach a certain level of speech comprehension. This paper will focus on the effects of cultural and environmentaleffects on language development by analyzing the behavioral theoryand interactionist perspective.
Accordingto Skinner who came up with a theory based on human behavior,language is a skill that can be obtained by a person the same way anindividual can acquire a particular conduct. The theory expounds onthe effects of geographical and cultural factors on the acquisitionof language skills. The method used for learning the language isoperant conditioning where the experiences a person undergoes help toshape his behavior. The experiences are triggered by a response. Forinstance, in a situation where a child whose speech is notintelligent is making some sounds, the caretaker then enhances thesounds they make by repeating them which results in the childcommitting the sounds to memory. On the other hand, the parentsrespond by hugging or smiling whenever a particular word is utteredby the child. The resultant effect is that the child develops arelationship between a certain word and sound to specific reactionsof the caretaker. Imitation is used by operant conditioning toincrease the speed at which the language skills can be acquired[ CITATION Bar12 l 1033 ].
Anotherlanguage development tool is called interactionist perspective whichidentifies the relationship between raw ability and geographicalinfluences. This view consists of two categories which depend on theability of the brain to process information and the interactionsbetween human beings. Language development consists of the two areas.Some languages are difficult to learn, but with the help of theexperience obtained in the environment and the acquisition ofinstinctive cognitive abilities, children can learn all kinds oflanguages as they grow up. According to the above perspective, theresearchers believe that a child possesses the capacity to learn alanguage at the time of their conception. They immediately use thoseabilities to enhance their language development, although theabilities may not be sufficient to help in language development.Therefore, other factors such as environment also contribute to achild’s development[ CITATION Ray12 l 1033 ].
Twostyles are utilized by young children to learn a language whichincludes, the expressive and referential style. The former enablesthe children to learn about the social norms of language and pronounswhile the latter is concerned with the words that describe inanimateobjects. The style used depends on a child’s reason for learningthat language. Each person has a purpose for studying a certainlanguage which can be to make conversations with people or todescribe the things found in the environment. Culture determines theidea used to teach children, for instance, children learning Englishuse the expressive style while those learning Chinese use referentialstyle. Some supportive environmental factors that aid in languagedevelopment include: A shy child will learn slowly, and childrenexposed to more words get a rich vocabulary base[ CITATION Ray12 l 1033 ].
Languageis a skill that is taught to children and therefore, it can beacquired by anyone irrespective of the cultural and environmentaldifferences. The development of their language will be affected bythe society they have been brought up in which comprises of thecultural and geographical differences.
Baruca,R., & Bialystok, E. (2012). Bilingual effects on cognitive andlinguistic development:Role of language, cultural background, andeducation. . .Child Development,413-422.
Raymond,B. (2012). Learnerswith mild disabilities .Ne Jersey: Peaeson Education inc.
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