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Intonation features of the expression of emotions in Spanish: preliminary study for a prosody assessment procedure. This study aimed to find out what intonation features reliably represent the emotions of "liking" as opposed to "disliking" in the Spanish language, with a view to designing a prosody assessment procedure for use with children with speech and language disorders. 18 intonationally different prosodic realisations (tokens) of one word (limón) were recorded by one native Spanish speaker. The tokens were deemed representative of two categories of emotion: liking or disliking of the taste "lemon". 30 native Spanish speakers assigned them to the two categories and rated their expressiveness on a six-point scale. For all tokens except two, agreement between judges as to category was highly significant, some tokens attracting 100% agreement. The intonation contours most related to expressiveness levels were: for "liking", an inverted U form contour with exaggerated pitch peak within the tonic syllable; and for "disliking", a flat melodic contour with a slight fall.clp.
Acquisition of mental state language in Spanish children: a longitudinal study of the relationship between the production of mental verbs and linguistic development. The development of language indicating the emergence of thinking about the thoughts of self and others has been scarcely studied in Spanish-speaking children. For this reason, we studied the development of mental state language and various indicators of language development in 25 Spanish-speaking children assessed at 3, 3 1/2, 4, 4 1/2, and 5 years of age. We coded and categorized the 40,250 utterances children produced during the five time points, 1202 (3.01%) of which had mental terms. In this sample, mental state language in Spanish children developed with a similar timeline and patterns as described in English-speaking children. However, several findings were novel for studies of mental state language. The general indexes of syntactic development did not correlate with the production of mental terms. The Index of Lexical Diversity was associated with the frequency of references to verbs of desire. The results of regression analyses suggest that not only the development of subordinate sentences with complement is associated with genuine mental references to desires and beliefs, but the development of lexical skills as well.ds
English speech sound development in preschool-aged children from bilingual English-Spanish environments. PURPOSE: English speech acquisition by typically developing 3- to 4-year-old children with monolingual English was compared to English speech acquisition by typically developing 3- to 4-year-old children with bilingual English-Spanish backgrounds. We predicted that exposure to Spanish would not affect the English phonetic inventory but would increase error frequency and type in bilingual children. METHOD: Single-word speech samples were collected from 33 children. Phonetically transcribed samples for the 3 groups (monolingual English children, English-Spanish bilingual children who were predominantly exposed to English, and English-Spanish bilingual children with relatively equal exposure to English and Spanish) were compared at 2 time points and for change over time for phonetic inventory, phoneme accuracy, and error pattern frequencies. RESULTS: Children demonstrated similar phonetic inventories. Some bilingual children produced Spanish phonemes in their English and produced few consonant cluster sequences. Bilingual children with relatively equal exposure to English and Spanish averaged more errors than did bilingual children who were predominantly exposed to English. Both bilingual groups showed higher error rates than English-only children overall, particularly for syllable-level error patterns. All language groups decreased in some error patterns, although the ones that decreased were not always the same across language groups. Some group differences of error patterns and accuracy were significant. Vowel error rates did not differ by language group. CONCLUSION: Exposure to English and Spanish may result in a higher English error rate in typically developing bilinguals, including the application of Spanish phonological properties to English. Slightly higher error rates are likely typical for bilingual preschool-aged children. Change over time at these time points for all 3 groups was similar, suggesting that all will reach an adult-like system in English with exposure and practice.lshss