The participants were 2, 4 year old Spanish-English bilingual children. Participants were selected due to the access to this population and met the following criteria: The children has been exposed to Spanish or English from birth and the children were sufficiently proficient to be tested in English in Spanish. The male participant was born in the U.S and he has been exposed to English in schooling and Spanish and Home. At the moment of this study he was attending day care in English language 8 hours per day. The female participant was born in Colombia and her first two years of life was exposed to Spanish, then she immigrated to the U.S. and has been attending day care 8.5 hours per day in English. She used Spanish at home. Both children’s interacting code-switching between English and Spanish in free activities and both are proficient in the two languages, they understand and speak English-Spanish in their daily basis. The two children’s were born in full term and not presented any speech disorder at the moment of this study.
Procedure and instruments.
The children’s parents received a background questionary to gather information about language use at home and social activities, amount of code-switching used at home in a daily basis and attitudes related to code-switching. This first part was conducted by a known person by the children’s and parents, fluent in English and Spanish who collaborated in this study.
Measures of children’s productive vocabulary and proficiency.. A narrative description task was utilized to measure expressive proficiency. A known history based in their favorite character was used. The Hive is a colorful animated series for kids all ages introducing life to early learners with the...
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...ly. Our study confirms results obtained by (Ribot & Hoff, 2014) where these children’s choice to speak or CS in English when addressed in Spanish to express proficiency in this particular narrative task. They rely in English language to express more accurate their ideas and in the majority using English vocabulary, the most active and prominent in their life. Those children’s according with (Ribot & Hoff, 2014) cannot be considered as balanced bilingual due to the fact that they showed different proportion in the use of CS to express proficiency, however, this is given in part to the specific use of Spanish language, the majority of time at home, and being in the U.S. where English is mainly spoken. A future and complementary study could use another type of task and not only measure expressive but also receptive proficiency in order to get more generalizable results.
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