Middle- and Working-class Black and White Children's Speech During a Picture-labeling Task

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Examined the speech of 9 middle-class Black, 9 middle-class White, 9 working-class Black, and 9 working-class White preschool children (aged 3.0–5.9 yrs) during a picture labeling task. The groups were found to be similar in levels and forms of labeling. There were class differences and race differences among the Ss: middle-class and White Ss labeled more and provided more information about objects. Results demonstrate the influence of social context in shaping children's labeling and the simultaneous influence of children's independent structuring of their labeling.