Ask-A-Linguist Message Details
|Subject:||Influence of L1 Syllable Structure on L2 of Two-Year-Old|
I am a Japanese mother of a two-year-old daughter. We live in Japan
and she goes to a local nursery school, 8:30am to 6pm, five days a
week. She does not learn English there, but I hope my daughter gets
familier with English so I started to play English videos made for little
children, about 1hour, about 5 days a week, since she was half a
Now she started to repeat words heard from the videos, but I started
to notice that her word pronunciation is always CVCV structured. For
example, ''clock'' is like ''kurokku'' and ''fish'' is like ''fishu''.
When I watch the videos with her, I always pronounce the words as
they are pronounced in the video (I am near-native). And no one but
me speaks to her in English, so there is no chance that she hears
wrongly pronounced English words.
Japanese is a CVCV structured so I understand that would occur to
those who has acquired Japanese, but I wonder if two-year-olds'
pronunciation has already shaped to their native languages, and will
not accept second language-peculiar pronunciation (CVC).
I would appreciate any comments or references I can turn to.
You mention that you're the only person who speaks to your daughter in English. I think this may be *very* relevant. My father was in the American Foreign Service and spent the first several years of his career in Germany, and so I spent the first two and a half years of my life in that country, and almost everybody I interacted with there, except for my parents, spoke to me in German, and so at that point in my life I learned German faster than English; I even used German, preferentially, when talking to my parents, even though they normally spoke to me in English.
With this in mind, if you're concerned about your daughter acquiring a `correct English pronunciation', I would strongly encourage you to expose her not only to English-language videos (that's fine, but I think more can be done) but to more actual, flesh-and-blood English-speakers that she can really interact with. At the age of 2, your daughter is much too young for you to begin worrying yet, but as she gets older I would encourage you to do what you can to encourage her to form friendships & other positive relationships with English-speakers, people who will routinely speak English with her & around her.
|Reply From:||Steven Schaufele click here to access email|