1. Children from low-SES families have smaller vocabularies than those from high-SES families when they start school.
2. Differences in early gesture use between parents and children help to explain the disparities in vocabulary that children bring with them to school.
3. The effect of SES on child vocabulary at 54 months is mediated, in part, by children's gesture use at 14 months.
The article "Differences in Early Gesture Explain SES Disparities in Child Vocabulary Size at School Entry" explores the relationship between socioeconomic status (SES) and child vocabulary development. The study found that children from high-SES families frequently used gesture to communicate at 14 months, which was explained by parent gesture use. In turn, the fact that children from high-SES families have large vocabularies at 54 months was explained by children's gesture use at 14 months. The article provides valuable insights into the role of early communication in vocabulary development and highlights the importance of addressing SES disparities in education.
However, there are some potential biases and limitations to consider. Firstly, the sample size is relatively small, with only 50 families included in the study. This may limit the generalizability of the findings to other populations or contexts. Additionally, while the study controlled for speech when examining gesture use, it did not control for other factors that may influence vocabulary development, such as exposure to books or educational resources.
Furthermore, while the article acknowledges previous research on the relationship between parent talk and child vocabulary development, it does not explore potential reasons for why parents from low-SES groups may talk less or use less diverse language with their children. This could be due to a lack of access to educational resources or time constraints related to work or caregiving responsibilities.
The article also does not address potential interventions or solutions for addressing SES disparities in vocabulary development. While identifying precursors to inequality is important, it is equally important to explore ways to address these disparities through targeted interventions or policy changes.
Overall, while this article provides valuable insights into the role of early communication in vocabulary development and highlights important issues related to SES disparities in education, it is important to consider its limitations and potential biases when interpreting its findings.