The study used 45 children aged from 3-5 years old as participants, through the distribution of questionnaires, parents’ reports, and the construction of communicative inventories in Mandarin to examine the differences in productive vocabulary use and expression among children with a variety of socioeconomic status, and further investigate the correlation and influence of SES on children’s early vocabulary development in Chinese. The research found that SES has a significant positive correlation with children’s productive vocabulary size and could positively predict the vocabulary development of children. Children from higher SES families have a larger productive vocabulary size than children from low SES families. The study also finds that SES has no direct correlation and influence on the children’s use frequency of vocabulary, short sentences, or phrases. The findings of this study offer possibilities to implement language intervention for children with lower SES and facilitate narrowing the SES-related gap of language development in early childhood.
Yeqing Liu, University of Pennsylvania, United States