Although Akan is one of the most widely spoken indigenous languages in Ghana, very little is known about children’s phonological development. This paper investigates the development of consonants in Akan among typically developing children aged 3-5 years. Preliminary results indicate that most consonants in Akan are mastered by age 4 or 5, similar to reports for other languages, although /w/ and /l/ showed late mastery, contrary to cross-linguistic observations. The rhotic /ɹ/ and consonants with secondary articulation were still developing at age 4 and showing a variety of mismatch patterns across children.
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I study phonology, language acquisition, constraint-based grammars, and other things. Photo credit: J. Craft.