Children’s language use in ECEC in a child perspective

Ahrenkiel, A., Holm, L., Eilenberg, L. Ø.


The study investigates children’s way of using language in kindergarten seen from a child’s perspective. The research question is: How is children’s interaction and use of language characterised in kindergarten, and what can this tell us about language development and language learning?


The results show that children's way of talking together is a creative and collective process that provides many opportunities to use and develop language practice. The children in the study helped each other learn and use the language while playing together. The researchers behind the study believe this shows how important it is to look at language learning as a natural and integral part of children's everyday life in kindergarten.


The data material is taken from ethnographic fieldwork with video recordings from four children’s full days in a Danish kindergarten. The four children (two girls and two boys) who were followed were chosen based on their interaction patterns and were among neither the most talkative nor the quietest children in the group. The observed children also had varied social backgrounds. Three employees worked in the room where the observations mainly took place.


Ahrenkiel, A., Holm, L. & Eilenberg, L. Ø. (2021). "Children’s language use in ECEC in a child perspective". Ethnography and Education, 16(4):420-436.