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“Children Are All Looking at You”: Child socialization, directive trajectories and affective stances in a Russian preschool

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This discourse analysis of video-recorded data examines how through the use of directives Russian preschool teachers socialize three-year-old preschool newcomers into becoming competent members of their social setting. I demonstrate that this process involves manipulation of multiple semiotic resources, including language, body, physical objects, and orientation in physical space. Previous research has shown that children “actively develop and use communicative skills to produce socially-ordered events in everyday interaction with adults and peers” (Corsaro 1979: 335). The present study demonstrates that adult care-givers take an active role in encouraging such production. During this process, the role of other children is highlighted, attention to ‘feelings of others’ is emphasized, and observation of each other’s behaviors is encouraged. ‘Others’ are ‘used’ to regulate the behavior, affective stances, and coordination of children’s actions.
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Keywords: Russian preschool children; directives; discourse analysis; language socialization

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2013

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