Location

University of Windsor

Document Type

Paper

Keywords

adult-children interaction, definition, issue, property, small children, spontaneous argumentation

Start Date

18-5-2016 9:00 AM

End Date

21-5-2016 5:00 PM

Abstract

The literature on argumentation and education often conveys that children’s argumentation skills are not well developed; therefore, it would be difficult to find argumentation in small children, as well as in primary school classrooms (Kuhn 1991). However, studies focusing on argumentation in less formal contexts (for example the family, see Arcidiacono & Bova 2013) show that there is no need to depart from such a negative stance. If children are given room to pursue their lines of thought (Danish & Enyedy 2015), they often produce sophisticated spontaneous argumentation. In this paper I consider arguments from definition introduced by children as a case in point. To do so, I use a corpus of data, in which small children under the age of six years, discuss with an adult and with peers. Results show two uses of arguments from definition by children: on the one hand, children may introduce a new issue and their standpoint supported by an argument from definition; on the other hand, children may contest or refute an issue that was proposed by an adult and put forward an argument from definition.

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May 18th, 9:00 AM May 21st, 5:00 PM

Uses of arguments from definition in children’s argumentation

University of Windsor

The literature on argumentation and education often conveys that children’s argumentation skills are not well developed; therefore, it would be difficult to find argumentation in small children, as well as in primary school classrooms (Kuhn 1991). However, studies focusing on argumentation in less formal contexts (for example the family, see Arcidiacono & Bova 2013) show that there is no need to depart from such a negative stance. If children are given room to pursue their lines of thought (Danish & Enyedy 2015), they often produce sophisticated spontaneous argumentation. In this paper I consider arguments from definition introduced by children as a case in point. To do so, I use a corpus of data, in which small children under the age of six years, discuss with an adult and with peers. Results show two uses of arguments from definition by children: on the one hand, children may introduce a new issue and their standpoint supported by an argument from definition; on the other hand, children may contest or refute an issue that was proposed by an adult and put forward an argument from definition.