This study explores the best way to teach two-year-old toddlers new verbs, and whether there are differences in what is best between late talkers and typically developing children. In a series of two, one-hour visits, children will watch videos on an eye-tracker, which will capture their face and gaze patterns. This data will be analyzed to see how children are making sense of what they are hearing. In one task, we ask whether it is better for children to hear a new verb before they see the action it denotes, or whether it is better to see the new action before hearing the verb. In the second task, we consider how quickly children are able to make sense of the language they hear, and whether this has any relationship to how they learn new verbs (Task 1). Results will help shape new clinical interventions for late talkers.
Learning new words is challenging for all toddlers, and it may be particularly challenging for toddlers who are late talkers. In this study, we ask whether late talkers use the same cues to figure out the meanings of new words as do their typically developing peers. Toddlers ages 2.0-2.5 will watch videos of people doing new actions and hear made-up words. An eye-tracking device will capture their face and their gaze patterns, and we will use this data to determine how they are making sense of the new words they are hearing. Results will provide insights into how toddlers learn new words and whether this process relates to toddlers' current language abilities.