Volume 19, Issue 2-3
  • ISSN 1568-1475
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9773
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In early communicative development, children with Down syndrome (DS) make extensive use of gestures to compensate for articulatory difficulties. Here, we analyzed the symbolic strategies that underlie this gesture production, compared to that used by typically developing children. Using the same picture-naming task, 79 representational gestures produced by 10 children with DS and 42 representational gestures produced by 10 typically developing children of comparable developmental age (3;1 vs. 2;9, respectively) were collected. The gestures were analyzed and classified according to four symbolic strategies. The two groups performed all of the strategies, with no significant differences for either choice or frequency of the strategies used. The item analysis highlighted that some photographs tended to elicit the use of the same strategy in both groups. These results indicate that similar symbolic strategies are active in children with DS as in typically developing children, which suggests interesting similarities in their symbolic development.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): Down syndrome; gesture; picture-naming game (PiNG); symbolic strategies
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