Language Skills (PTH) Development語文（普通話）發展
Using data of Yi children in cohort 1 (obtained from wave 1 to wave 4, i.e., between the year 2007 and 2009), we find that their language skills (PTH), i.e., Putonghua proficiency, improve over time. The graph below shows the language skills (PTH) development of Yi children. Because Putonghua is the official language of China and the native language of Yi children is Yi dialect, Yi children have to be proficient in the second language of Putonghua for their future success.
Yi children’s Putonghua proficiency was evaluated by their teachers at each data wave. Indicators include their ability to understand instructions and meaning of words in Putonghua, as well as to communicate and use a wide range of Chinese adjectives and pronouns correctly. Higher score means higher level of Putonghua proficiency. For more information, please refer to the data access and instrument Section in the About the Project Page.
Improvement in Language skills (PTH) overtime and Contributing factors普通話語文能力的改善和相關的因素
Longitudinal analysis using multilevel modelling shows a statistically significant improvement in the Putonghua proficiency of Yi children from wave 1 to 4. We observe an average of 1.14 unit of increase in their proficiency scores across each time wave (b=1.14, t=23.83).
The following discusses the regression findings on the effect of each factor, measured at wave 1, on Yi children’s Putonghua proficiency:
Ethnic and Cultural Awareness. Yi children with higher levels of ethnic and cultural awareness show higher Putonghua scores (b=0.49, t=3.16). Findings support our assumption that ethnic and cultural awareness affects Yi children positive development.
Relationship Quality. Yi children who share a better relationship with their fathers show relatively higher levels of Putonghua proficiency (b=0.55, t=3.07), while relationships with other family members (i.e., adopter, mother/late mother, and siblings) do not have an impact. Results support our conceptualization that relationship with caregivers will affect the language skills development of Yi children. Further research is needed to understand why relationship with father has a specific impact on Yi children’s Putonghua proficiency.
Maternal and Paternal Status. Yi children with mothers who are remarried (b=0.71, t=1.97) show a higher level of Putonghua proficiency that those whom mothers have passed away; while the paternal status does not show any significant effect.
Number of Siblings. Number of siblings is not associated with the Putonghua Proficiency of Yi children.
Demographics. Male and female Yi children do not show any difference in their Putonghua proficiency. Yi children who are older at enrollment show a statistically significant higher score in their Putonghua proficiency than their younger parts (b=0.78, b=5.35).