HomeFEU English and Literature Journalvol. 4 no. 1 (2010)

Grammaticality of Children’s Codeswitches

Maurie Liza M. Nivales | Michelle Ting-Viña

Discipline: Literature, Languages



Through a formal testing procedure using toys as prompts and semi-formal interview aimed specifically at getting samples of children’s talk, this qualitative study answers the question whether bilingual children’s use of codeswitching is a communicative strategy to mask linguistic incompetence or is it on the contrary, a show of linguistic competence. The study concludes that the manner in which the sampled Filipino bilingual children embed English words into a predominantly Filipino language matrix illustrates their competence in codeswitching which suggests a certain level of linguistic competence in two languages.