Learning a second language morphologically close to the first language: impact on morphological awareness and reading among French-speakers in grades 1, 3 and 5
This study aims to compare in French as a first language the morphological awareness (MA) of bilingual and monolingual children, and to determine the contribution of MA to reading and to specify how bilingualism moderates this contribution. The MA is assessed by sentence completion by flexional or derivational form and base extraction tasks and reading by standardized tests (EVALEC and Alouette). Sixty-nine French-Portuguese bilinguals in 1st, 3rd and 5th grades were compared to 69 monolinguals in same grades with no differences in chronological age and socio-economic status. Results show the superiority of bilinguals compared to monolinguals in all MA tasks (inflexional and derivational) at each grade, and the contribution of MA (composite score) to reading fluency in 1st grade and to reading accuracy in 3rd and 5th grade, for both bilinguals and monolinguals. These results enhance the bilingual advantage and the MA’s role in reading, particularly in reading accuracy.
- morphological awareness
- words reading
- competences in first language
- second language learning