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Peggy Infant and Child

Tracking Natural Learning

What is really profound in this work?The study’s foci and length, and the corpus constructed.
Good Questions:
how is one’s native language learned?
How does language learning relate to other learning?
There are several strong case studies of language learning,
LC3 participates in and extends that tradition by broadening scope of the study to cover other aspects of the infant’s behavior and experience.
New opportunities: a baby born to our familyVideo recording of behavior captures enough context to interpret what was meant by early gesture and utterance.
Minsky’s progress with The Society of Mind Theory.
New ideas: Minsky argued that language structures were developed from learning and that organization of prior knowledge of the physical world provides prototypes of later manifest linguistic structure.The LC3 corpus is constructed to explore an infant’s learning about the physical world and social relations, and to capture verbal behavior and her communication interactions in these different domains.
LC3 is two, long, asynchronous studies of development of one mind: the study of learning about objects and space; and the study of social interactions, focused on language learning.
Inspiration: Minsky, previous research with my childrenThe close observation of one young child’s learning was as engaging as anything encountered in my life. So it remains.
Methods: studies of individuals are most valuable when they can be clearly related to our common human nature and concerns.The parallel cases strategy was adopted to provide both a “spine” relating this infant to norms of development and to permit exploration of Minsky’s conjecture about the relationships between physical relation structures and language structures.
Goals: construct a corpus to embody the parallel cases strategy.Most of the text materials are here, now. Videos are digitized; a moiety are segmented and formatted for access through this archive.
Outcomes:much has been done; more remains to be done. NLCSA will make public ongoing research and other outcomes.
Theory: ideas developed through explorations while a visiting Scholar at the Archives Piaget are the starting point for my new work in this archive.Following Minsky, Peirce, George Miller, and my LC1 & LC2,
I view the process of language learning as beginning with creation by the infant of personal communication routines in the family circle. As vocables are gradually added, this becomes a transient private language (an “idiolangue”). As the infant expands communication to non-intimates, the idiolangue is necessarily standardized for interaction with others who know the infant less well.

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