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The home language environment of monolingual and bilingual children and their language proficiency

  • ANNA F. SCHEELE (a1), PAUL P. M. LESEMAN (a1) and AZIZA Y. MAYO (a2)

This study investigated the relationships between home language learning activities and vocabulary in a sample of monolingual native Dutch (n = 58) and bilingual immigrant Moroccan–Dutch (n = 46) and Turkish–Dutch (n = 55) 3-year-olds, speaking Tarifit-Berber, a nonscripted language, and Turkish as their first language (L1), respectively. Despite equal domain general cognitive abilities, Dutch children scored higher than the bilingual children on a L1 vocabulary test, and Moroccan–Dutch children had higher second language (L2) vocabulary skills compared to Turkish–Dutch children. Multigroup analyses revealed strong impact on both L1 and L2 skills of language specific input in literate and oral activities. Finally, indications were found of positive cross-language transfer from L1 to L2 as well as competition between L1 and L2 input.

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Corresponding author
ADDRESS FOR CORRESPONDENCE Anna F. Scheele, Utrecht University, P.O. Box 80140, NL-3508 TC Utrecht, The Netherlands. E-mail:
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Applied Psycholinguistics
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