Preschoolers' Dyadic Speech about Nonpresent Entities during Joint Play

Karen C. Fuson, Paula Olszewski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This study examined speech about nonpresent entities (immediate/task; local/nontask perceptually present; distant/nontask perceptually nonpresent) in the conversations of same-aged dyads of 2- through 5-year-olds in two task situations. It also examined the portion of task speech that related to the sharing and use of task objects and to task themes or goals. For all subjects, there was a high rate of talking (one utterance every 2 s), and speech was predominantly about the task. Within task speech the youngest children produced more speech about task objects while the older children produced more speech about abstract task themes. Within nontask speech, there was an increase with age in speech about perceptually nonpresent entities. These effects varied with type of task.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)221-233
Number of pages13
JournalDiscourse Processes
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 1986

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language


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