The Influence of home factors on simultaneous bilingual preschoolers’ English and Mandarin receptive vocabulary skills in Singapore
Ng, Samantha Xing Ning
Date of Issue2019-04-30
School of Social Sciences
Language and literacy development in children is facilitated by their experiences at home. Parents can influence children’s language and literacy development by creating an enriched home learning environment to enhance children’s learning (De Houwer, 2011). There has been a steady increase in the number of English dominant households in recent years. This discrepancy of input between English and mother tongue languages is not ideal and unconducive for language learning because it has resulted in an unequal mastery of both languages in bilingual preschoolers. The current study investigated the relationship between multiple home factors and English and Mandarin receptive vocabulary skills in English-Mandarin simultaneous bilingual preschoolers’ in Singapore. In addition, the study investigated the contribution of each home factor in predicting their English and Mandarin receptive vocabulary. Data from 42 English-Mandarin simultaneous bilingual preschoolers, aged five to six years old, were analysed. Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test and its translated Mandarin version assessed preschoolers’ English and Mandarin receptive skills respectively. Using a questionnaire, parents reported information regarding their home language and literacy environment. Results revealed that frequency of fathers’ English input, preschoolers’ English usage and parent-child book reading in English significantly predicted preschoolers’ English receptive vocabulary. None of the Mandarin home factors were significant predictors of preschoolers’ Mandarin receptive vocabulary. Findings suggest the need for parents to create a language-rich and conducive English and Mandarin home learning environment in efforts to bolster bilingual preschoolers’ learning of both languages.
Final Year Project (FYP)