Effects of age and language on co-speech gesture production: an investigation of French, American, and Italian children's narratives.

ABSTRACT The aim of this paper is to compare speech and co-speech gestures observed during a narrative retelling task in five- and ten-year-old children from three different linguistic groups, French, American, and Italian, in order to better understand the role of age and language in the development of multimodal monologue discourse abilities. We asked 98 five- and ten-year-old children to narrate a short, wordless cartoon. Results showed a common developmental trend as well as linguistic and gesture differences between the three language groups. In all three languages, older children were found to give more detailed narratives, to insert more comments, and to gesture more and use different gestures-specifically gestures that contribute to the narrative structure-than their younger counterparts. Taken together, these findings allow a tentative model of multimodal narrative development in which major changes in later language acquisition occur despite language and culture differences.

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Colletta, Jean-Marc
Guidetti, Michele
Capirci, Olga
Cristilli, Carla
Demir, Ozlem Ece
Kunene-Nicolas, Ramona N
Levine, Susan
Cambridge University Press,, London , Regno Unito
Journal of child language (Print) 42 (2015): 122–45. doi:10.1017/S0305000913000585
info:cnr-pdr/source/autori:Colletta, Jean-Marc; Guidetti, Michele; Capirci, Olga; Cristilli, Carla; Demir, Ozlem Ece; Kunene-Nicolas, Ramona N; Levine, Susan/titolo:Effects of age and language on co-speech gesture production: an investigation of French, A
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