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Storybooks aren't just for fun: Narrative and non-narrative picture books foster equal amounts of generic language during mother-toddler book sharing

Nyhout, A., O'Neill, D.K. (2014) Storybooks aren't just for fun: Narrative and non-narrative picture books foster equal amounts of generic language during mother-toddler book sharing. Frontiers in Psychology, 5 . ISSN 1664-1078. (doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00325) (KAR id:81939)

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Parents and children encounter a variety of animals and objects in the early picture books they share, but little is known about how the context in which these entities are presented influences talk about them. The present study investigated how the presence or absence of a visual narrative context influences mothers' tendency to refer to animals as individual characters or as members of a kind when sharing picture books with their toddlers (mean age 21.3 months). Mother-child dyads shared both a narrative and a non-narrative book, each featuring six animals and matched in terms of length and quantity of text. Mothers made more specific (individual-referring) statements about animals in the narrative books, whereas they provided more labels for animals in the non-narrative books. But, of most interest, the frequency and proportion of mothers' use of generic (kind-referring) utterances did not differ across the two different types of books. Further coding of the content of the utterances revealed that mothers provided more story-specific descriptions of states and actions of the animals when sharing narrative books and more physical descriptions of animals when sharing non-narrative books. However, the two books did not differ in terms of their elicitation of natural facts about the animals. Overall, although the two types of books encouraged different types of talk from mothers, they stimulated generic language and talk about natural facts to an equal degree. Implications for learning from picture storybooks and book genre selection in classrooms and home reading are discussed. © 2014 Nyhout and O'Neill.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00325
Additional information: Unmapped bibliographic data: C7 - Article 325 [EPrints field already has value set] LA - English [Field not mapped to EPrints] J2 - Front. Psychol. [Field not mapped to EPrints] AD - Department of Psychology, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, ON, Canada [Field not mapped to EPrints] DB - Scopus [Field not mapped to EPrints] M3 - Article [Field not mapped to EPrints]
Uncontrolled keywords: Book genre, Book sharing, Contextual influences, Generic language, Informational books, Narrative books, Parent-child interactions
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Psychology > Developmental Psychology
Depositing User: Angela Nyhout
Date Deposited: 01 Jul 2020 12:41 UTC
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2020 10:52 UTC
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