In which way is child-directed speech useful for the purpose ofword segmentation?
Thus, the structural properties typical of child-directed speech appear to be a crucial element that might help infants to locate word boundaries.
Hypotheses about the possible contributions of child-directed speech to language development have been strongly criticised and undermined by linguistic nativists.
However, the study of child-directed speech has recently proved to be quite fruitful for the understanding of language development, given that the natural form of child-directed speech is modified in ways that logically facilitate infants' attempts to build initial representations for language.
Child-directed speech has also been shown to facilitate language-related tasks such as word segmentation.
In order to obtain a representative picture of the lexical statistics of English child-directed speech, frequencies of past tense forms for the eleven mothers of the MLU controls were pooled to form a mother group.
Although high-frequency verbs in child-directed speech tend to be irregular, a number of regular verbs are also used with considerable frequency by mothers when speaking to their young children; exposure is such that difficulties in the perception of the unstressed -ed suffix can be overridden.
In section 3 we review results of a previous study that found object ellipsis in the spontaneous use of these constructions by both young children and adults in child-directed speech.
If double-object applicative constructions are frequent in everyday discourse, or at least in child-directed speech, we would expect such constructions to be learned easily and early.
The syntactic frames (number and percent) of objects in ditransitive applicative constructions in the spontaneous speech of two children (sampled at 2;1 years, 2;6 years, and 3/3;2 years) and in adult child-directed speech (Ben- V TH = preverbal pronominal benefactive and postverbal lexical theme NP, etc.
One might wonder if the animacy characteristics of ditransitive applicatives used in child-directed speech could contain clues to the syntactic constraints on double-object constructions.
This corresponds to the animacy attributes of child-directed speech, where all but one of the ditransitive applicative benefactives in the input corpus analysis were found to be animate, and all themes inanimate.