Mapping novel nouns and verbs onto dynamic action events: Are verb meanings easier to learn than noun meanings for Japanese children?

Mutsumi Imai, Etsuko Haryu, Hiroyuki Okada

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

73 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The present research examined how 3- and 5-year-old Japanese children map novel nouns and verbs onto dynamic action events and generalize them to new instances. Studies 1 to 3 demonstrated that although both 3-and 5-year-olds were able to map novel nouns onto novel objects, only 5-year-olds could generalize verbs solely on the basis of the sameness of the action. Study 4 showed that the difficulty young children experience in learning verbs lies mainly in mapping the appropriate element to a verb rather than in encoding and remembering an action itself. The results of this research are related to a long-debated issue of whether noun learning is privileged over verb learning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)340-355
Number of pages16
JournalChild Development
Volume76
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Jan 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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