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Psicologia: Reflexão e Crítica

Print version ISSN 0102-7972On-line version ISSN 1678-7153


CARDOSO-MARTINS, Cláudia  and  BATISTA, Anna Cláudia Eutrópio. Letter name knowledge and the development of spelling skills: evidence from Brazilian Portuguese-speaking children. Psicol. Reflex. Crit. [online]. 2005, vol.18, n.3, pp.330-336. ISSN 0102-7972.

Four to 5-year-old children were asked to spell pairs of words beginning with the same letter and consonant sound. For each pair, the entire name or part of the name of the initial letter could be heard in the pronunciation of one of the words (e.g., telefone; limão), but not in the pronunciation of the other (e.g., tartaruga; laranja). The children spelled the first letter correctly more frequently for words such as telefone than for words such as tartaruga, suggesting that children use their knowledge of letter names to connect print to speech. The implications of these findings for our understanding of the development of children's invented spellings are discussed. In particular, we question Ferreiro's interpretation of a type of spelling that is observed among young speakers of Spanish and Portuguese - the so-called syllabic spelling.

Keywords : Letter-name knowledge; invented spellings; syllabic productions.

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