Early sign language acquisition and the development of hand preference in young children

Autor/a: BONVILLIAN, John D.; RICHARDS, Herbert C.; DOOLEY, Tracy T.
Año: 1997
Editorial: Brain and Language, nº 58 (1997) pp. 1-22
Tipo de código: Copyright
Soporte: Digital


Educación » Adquisición y desarrollo del lenguaje


Hand preference for signing and for nonsign actions was examined longitudinally in 24 young children (3 deaf, 21 hearing) with deaf parents. Most of these children showed a strong preference for their right hands in their sign production. This preference emerged early in their development, was relatively consistent over time, and predicted mature hand preference. Although most of the children also preferred to use their right hands in nonsign actions, their right-hand preference for signing was much stronger. Hand preference scores for two types of nonsign actions, communicative gestures and object actions, were significantly correlated with those for signing. Hand preference also was linked to rate of motor development but not to sign language acquisition. These findings are discussed with regard to current conceptualizations about the interrelationships among language, motor processes, and laterality.