Emiddia Longobardi, Sandra Rienzi, Pietro Spataro, Cristina Colonnesi

Communicative functions and mind-mindedness in mother-child interactions at 16 months of age

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Communicative Functions; Mind-Mindedness; Responsiveness; Mother-Child Interaction.

The present study analyzed maternal child-directed-speech at 16 months of age, by taking into account five communicative functions (Tutorial, Didactic, Conversation, Control and Asynchronic) and the use of Appropriate and Non-Attuned comments referred to mental states ("mind-mindedness"). 26 child-mother dyads participated and were videotaped during a play session at home. The analyses showed that the Tutorial function was positively correlated with the frequency of appropriate mind-related comments, and the Asynchronic function was positively correlated with the non-attuned comments, but negatively correlated with the appropriate comments. These results suggest that maternal communicative acts intended to support children's activities are also particularly sensitive to their mental states. Both the measures (communicative functions and "mind-mindedness") are determinants of the responsive behaviors of the caregivers during the interaction with children.

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