Senin, 17 Desember 2007

Sampang Regency


Sampang is one of Madura’s regency that has many kinds tourism object. Sampang is a tropical area, so that it is comfortable for the tourist to enjoy the tourism objects. There are many kinds of tourism objects in Sampang, such as; mandangin island tourism spot, Camplong beach, Madengan tomb, recreation of Klampis reservouir, Toroan waterfall, the ruin Raden Segoro, ruins of Pababaran. Those tourism objects, is become the main icon of Sampang regency.

In sampang, there are many interesting places which can enjoy the panoramas of this city. Such as – Mandangin island, Camplong Beach,Madengan Tom, Klampis Reservoir,Toroal waterfall, and etc.

MANDANGIN ISLAND, the beauty of tourist

It is in Mandangin Island, Sampang Subdistrict. The kind of tourism in Mandangin Island is Marine Tourism. It is about 5 miles from the district Capital. It can be reached by using traditional motorboat or motor sail boat on the calm water surface of Madura Strait, giving additional scenes toward the beauty of the under-water world with naked eyes where many varieties of colored fish and live corals in various forms are scattered. Their beauty is incomparable and we can dive or do other activities on that beach.


Madengan Tomb is tomb for high-class authority of Sampang a long time ago. Now, it is highly respected by either most Sampang people or people around Sampang Regency. Many people from out-of Sampang visit this sacred place. The accommodation of the road to this place is very good and is completed with a wide parking lot. This tomb is located in Polagan Village Sampang City district. The distance from downtown is relatively close because its location is in the Capital Regency.

Camplong Tourist cottage and Beach are located in Dharma Camplong Village. Further east just 62 km from Bangkalan. Camplong beach is a good place to stop over on your journey in Madusa Island through south road. The Kind of tourism with many facilities given both children amusement places and accommodation in front of inn/cottage along the edge of the beach. Camplong fishing village with colorful sailing boat can be added into your tour. Camplong cottage in this area is recommended to stay at. The distance of the tourist cottage and Camplong Beach from the Regency Capital is about 8 km with roads in good condition. It is a very suitable place for transiting or resting because it is precisely located near the main street to Kamal-Sumenep. When you come to this resort you are able not only to rest but also to enjoy delicious Madurese ‘rujak’ easily found there. There are also provided with other facilities such as children amusement places and swimming pools.

Sabtu, 15 Desember 2007

Cultural of Madura

Cultural of madura ethnic

Cultural forms in Madura are generally speaking similar to those of Java and, looked at from a wider viewpoint, belong to the Java - Bali - Madura - Sunda family.

Madurese culture, however, has its own shades and tones, undoubtedly conditioned in part by the harsh landscape and climate. Immediately apparent are the differences in language and mental attitude between the Madurese and say, the Javanese. The people of Madura are well known for their straightforwardness and direct approach, particularly evident in their manner of speech. Often considered rough and un- refined by outsiders, a different picture emerges as soon as one goes a little deeper. It might be fairer to say that the Madurese are hot-blooded and quick to excite. This, too is perhaps partly a reflection of the sometimes dry, arid conditions and parched lanscape. The result is that the people of Madura have learned to be quick-witted, industrious, adaptable and, all in all, charming.

A Madurese can be the most loyal friend when approached with politeness; but cross him and watch out! Since Madura shares approximately the same cultural influences and general historical background as neighbouring Java, religion and general way of life are not so different.

In centuries past the Madurese have frequently allied themselves with the Javanese in order to ward off a common enemy. On occasions the two races have fought. In any event, there has always been a continuing communication across the narrow Straits of Madura, and today a large percentage mainland East Java's population, especially those living along the north east coast and other low-lying areas, claim Madurese descent.

The predominant religion is Islam, brought first to the island in the 15th and 16th centuries by disciples of the Wali Songo, or 'Nine Saints of Islam', and notably the followers of Sunan Giri from Gresik. The new religion affected cultural forms, particularly noticeable in the architectural styles.

As important anchorage points on the international trade route linking Europe with the Far East, the port of East Java, and hence Madura, were open to artistic traditions from every corner of the civilised world; from regions as part apart as Egypt, India, China, Persia and, later, Europe

Jumat, 14 Desember 2007

Maduranese Ethnic group

The Madurese are an ethnic group originally from the island of Madura but now found in many parts of Indonesia, where they are the third-largest ethnic group by population. Common features of most Madurese throughout the archipelago include Islamic religion and the use of the Madurese language.

The Madurese are a religious ethnic, mostly joint with Nahdlatul Ulama, a moderate Muslim organization in Indonesia. Pesantren has a pivotal role in Madurese life.

While the Madurese have roots on Madura, off the northeastern coast of Java, the majority of Madurese do not now live on that island. The Madurese people have migrated out of Madura over several hundred years, mostly driven by poor agricultural resources in their home island. The majority have settled on Java, where an estimated nine million Madurese live, especially in East Java where they form about half the population.

The Madurese were also major clients of the government transmigration programs of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, through which they settled in relatively sparsely populated areas of Indonesia's other islands, especially Kalimantan and Sumatra. As a result of this program, many regions of Indonesia have communities of former transmigrants and their descendants that maintain their Madurese identity. Some of these migrant groups have been the subject of conflict with indigenous communities. The best-publicicized conflict has been on Kalimantan, where thousands were killed in fighting between the Madurese and the indigenous Dayaks during the late 1990s.

Family is important to the Madurese and they commonly live in villages that function around an Islamic religious center. According to Islamic law, a man may have more than one wife. Marriage proposals are usually made by the groom's parents, preferably to a first or second cousin. If the proposal is accepted, the bride's parents are then presented with the "bride price", which is usually cattle. The groom's parents then set the date for the upcoming wedding. Newlywed couples often live with the bride's family.

Because the island of Madura has very poor soil, farming is not important in Madurese culture. As a result, the Madurese tend not to farm on other islands with very good soil, such as Java, and opt to herd cattle, fish, or sail instead. A common nickname for the Madurese is "cowboys" of Indonesia. Cattle are an important part of the culture, and bull-racing is one of their favorite sports.

Islam is an integral part of the social, political and economic life of the Madurese. Although the Madurese people are orthodox Sunni Muslims in many ways, there are many folk beliefs in seeking protection in life through the magic of either appeasing or controlling good and bad spirits. They have a strong belief in spirits, the use of amulets, black and white magic and the worship of ancestors.

Kamis, 13 Desember 2007

Bangkalan tourism of Madura

Bangkalan regency

Madura Island is part of East Java that needs a better access. Madura that consist of four regencies has a lot to offer. It has excellent quality of agriculture outputs and beautiful tourism objects and more. The presence of the bridge had expected to improve smoother flow of people, goods and service from and into this island. Mayor impacts had expected to emerge from this facility, be it socially and economically. The Suramadu Bridge that connects Surabaya and Madura Island has expected to complete in 2007, extending 5.43 km with 28.10 m width.

The sea crossing from East Java to the small island of Madura takes just half an hour. Measuring about 160 km in length and about 40 across at it s widest point, Madura support a population of close to 3 million inhabitants, most of whom are farmers or fisherman.

The most famous attraction of this island is the annual bull racing (kerapan sapi), which takes place during the dry season in August – September. These exiting and colourful tournaments consist of a race between two pairs of bulls, each team pulling a rider and sled. Then, the finals are held in Madura’s capital, Pamekasan on October.

The interesting part of this attraction is when a rider stands on the ‘Keleles’, yelling and slamming while his hands hold two sticks and slap the bull’s weight and attached to the bulls. A pair of male cow races each other in 200 m length or known with Kerapan Sapi. Madurese always hold this race yearly from sub district level, district, and finally to get a President Cup.

This tradition has done for so long and it is a symbol to thank to God by cow breeders in Madura. Brown cow, a Madurese cow which is always in the race, tourist also can notice Sapi Kereman, to enjoy how Madurese takes care of their cows. It is the interesting part, begins with how the Madurese graze the cows, take care of the cow’s health with traditional herbs and train the cow about running. In the middle of Kerapan Sapi, there is an additional attraction “Sapi Sono”. It is a female bull contest.

The town of Sumenep of the North Eastern and of the island has some interesting historical, as well as some good nearby. The city’s old palace and museum are worth visiting, as is the large Jami’ Mosque with its green-tiered roof, above the town is the royal mausoleums Asta Tinggi. The two main beaches near Sumenep are Slopeng beach and Lombang beach. The former, which lies on the north coast some 21 km from the town, is a beautiful location with tall palm trees shading the edge of the beach. At Lombang, on Madura’s northeastern point, a long and narrow stretch of white sand is back by dwarf Causarina trees.

A narrow road runs the whole along Madura’s attractive north coast, from Slopeng to Bangkalan. There are many small villages and quite beaches on the way, in particular the fishing communities of Pasongsongan and Pasean, where the estuaries have packed with colourful sailing boats. Near to Bangkalan there is Aermata tomb of Ratu Ibu, which dates back to the mind 17 century. The tomb set on a hill about 4 km inland the town of Arosbaya.

Madura has well known for its Batik Textile production and has its own unique style in the performing art; the island is famous for its Topeng Dalang, a mask dance / theatre, which at one time had only seen within the royal palace. Most popular Batik is at Tanjungbumi, Bangkalan.

Rongkang beach is located in Kwanyar, 35 km south of Bangkalan city. Like Maneron beach, this beach condition is still experiencing, and requires the investor presence. The tourism potency is rock coast area along the length of 1 km more than its extent of hill that having height of 20 to 25 meters dpl, and have crop habitat that is “Jambu keluthu'” ( guava).
The beauty of this beach also shown the boats grass in Madura strait. If dusk arrived, seems to be pride shimmer light of town and ship lamps.


Sambilangan beach is located about 7 km in south side of Bangkalan city, in Sambilangan village, Bangkalan district. This beach also still seems to be experiencing, besides that, there is a “Lamp" (mercusuar) made 1879, opened by ZW Willem III the height is 90 meters. The tower is diffraction taken a ride, so that the tourists can enjoy the grass of fisherman boat and merchantman in Madura strait.

The beautiful of "sunset" can enjoyed with very transparent ashore this beach. The extent of mangrove forest and hundreds of hectare rice area orbiting ecosystem Sambilangan beach seems beautiful.


The Geger hill tourism is located in Geger village, Geger district, and 30 km southeast of the city. Reside in 150 to 200 meters dpl height. This location is easy to reach by public transportation. This object tourism is prospective to be developing as forest object tourism, have camping ground arena, athletic climbed bank.

Besides its nature beauty, this tourism objects has a sanctified statue and ancient omission. Area forest Acacia, Mahogany and teak forest with 42 ha width more. Five (5) fruit of keramat cave is having historical tools nuance that is; Petapan Cave, Adipodai cave, that is the father of the Madura legendaries figure, Jokotole alias Panembahan Secodiningrat III at XIII century, Potre Cave, the ex Potre Koneng cave, the wife of Adipodai, Pelanangan Cave, have the stalactite that like man genitals. It has said if drink the water that drops from this unique stalactite can add the man sexuality energy. Pancong Pote Cave, have the unique form of subterranean river, and its stalactite content and stalagmite colorful. Snake Cave, have its unique of giant stone alike snakehead. Have bank side in its north side and south, so that, it is ideal to made an athletic object of climbed bank.

Pangelengan Hollow, is bank hollow in the hill wall of north side. It is nicely, this hollow is extent of granite rock / onyx, so that it is very fit for rest place, and enjoy the beautiful of natural lake and extent of wide rice field in foothills.

Pelanggiran statue has reef hillock form. This is highest top from Geger hill. It has said, at 8 century ago, this Pelanggiran historical tools is place of landing of first person in Madura, namely Patih Pranggulang (Ki Poleng) and Dewi Ratna Roro Gung (Kuning Princess). In this historical area, the first Madura R Segara boy, was born from Dewi Ratna Roro Gung womb.

KH. Moh. Cholil grave is located in Martajasah village, Bangkalan district. The grave of great moslem in Wali Songo era is located 2 km from the downtown and adjacent with Sambilangan beach. The Kh. Moh. Cholil grave has visited by many pilgrimages from various regions. KH. Moh. Cholil has known as Waliullah and as the teacher of big saint in the nation, as the idea concept or forming of ‘Nahdatul Ulama’ and use his two pupils they are; KH. Hasyim Asyari (late), the grandfather of the fourth President of Indonesia namely KH. Abdurahman Wahid, and Kh. As'ad Syamsul Arifin (late), the founder of ‘Pondok Asem Bagus

he Aermata grave is located in Buduran village, Arosbaya district; it is the Bangkalan king’s grave at dynasty Cakraningrat I-VII (16 to 18 century). The grave complex is located on the Buduran hill. Kanjeng Ratu Syarifah Ambami, the princess from the first Bangkalan king, namely Raden Praseno or Cakraningrat I had buried there. The king historical has assumed to be a holly. Hence, the grave complex of kanjeng Ratu, which also grandchild Sunan Giri, is always inundated of pilgrimage from various areas, even from outside country.

The potency, which able to be enjoyed by the tourists in Aer Mata grave is the unique of the carved at the wall side in each dome, and grave warangka that so exquisite, and artistic. In 1975 the carve arts in grave complex of Aer Mata get the artistic champion title carved omission of ancient Asian selenium. It give in the artistic of carved Angkor World in Cambodia which known as one of 7 omission miracles (ancient) world. Carve dome wall and warangka made from alabaster to symbolize the association phonetic symbol and reconciliation between the believers in Madura at 16 to 18 century ago. The configuration of building architecture art was started from consecutive admission doorstep, fence circled, and 3 domes grave of king. It is the ancient vision culture pledge. Building physical of this grave has done without using cement gluten, except brick heap with natural technique insulator.


Ancient Museum is king Cakraningrat omission located in downtown precisely in Kraton sub-district, Bangkalan district. Museum, which saves the history objects and historical tools, is located in house complex on duty Father Bangkalan gouvernor. This Museum collects various valuable antique objects history such as; ancient canon, Gamelan, customhouse Madura’s miniature and others.

Traditional artistry miscellaneous and custom ceremony as tourism potency, which have tilled and it is good to sell, such as:

  • Moang Deny Dance

  • Angklung Mask Dance

  • Rokat Dance

  • Rokat Dance

  • Keraban Dance

  • Fisherman Dance

  • Buggy Dance

  • Blandaran Dance

  • Calibrated ' Month Dance

  • Fisherman Dance

  • Sholawat Prophet Dance

  • Nyello ' Aeng Dance

  • Reng Majangan Dance

  • Hadrah Jidor Artistry

  • Salaban ( Sandur Madura) Artistry in all (18) districts.

The traditional Artistry is still existed with new creation of local choreographers, which is active in

dance galleries such as; Tarara dance gallery Bangkalan district and Larasati dance gallery in Burneh district.

Beside its dance traditional artistry, Bangkalan is rich with its custom that local member like still execute this ceremony in routine:

  • a. Traditional Ceremony Rokat Tase' in Sepulu district and Arosbaya district, that is ceremony ritual to request safety and benediction of sea from God.

  • b. Custom ceremony Jaran Kenca' in Socah district, that is expectation ceremony of guest at event of reception sunatan (circumcision) and marrying.

  • c. Custom ceremony Hong Bahhong in Geger district, that is ritual ceremony to refuse the danger or disaster / disease and other ugly influence.

  • d. Custom ceremony Topeng Patenteng in Modung district, that is ceremony ritual to request lowering of rain when length drought reach it fierceness.

  • e. Marrying custom ceremony Moang Sangkal in all (18) districts. This ritual ceremony implies application of divorce equipment in order not to have sin because the happening of nuptials a woman that preceding the woman sister which has not married.
    f. Marrying custom ceremony, Ka' Okke in all districts.

Pamekasan tourism

Bull racing of madura

Tameka's is rich with its art and culture. Bull race is a reliable tourism, which brings many foreign and domestic tourists. It’s held in September until the beginning of November, finally at Madura Governor assistant level fighting for President Cup. Also it’s interspersed with cow race “Sonok”, which is preceded by Pecot Dance.

Talang Siring beach is located in Montok village, Larangan district, approximately 15 km from the regency capital. This tourism object is a place for a rest temporarily while enjoying waves and the waving coconut trees. It also has beautiful white sand and its waves are not too big, so it is safely to swim or surfing in this beach.
The activities that we can do at this beach are, sailing, fishing and swimming. In the south side of this beach there is a Buddha temple, about 750 m.

With its typical landscape, waves dashing against the cliffs add to the beauty of the scene especially at morning. It’s located in Pademawu district, about 12 km south east of Pamekasan. This beach has a beautiful beach with sand and else where it has a high coral cliff on which shady trees grow. It is a nice place to rest and enjoy the scenery. This beach also closes to fisherman village and also as fishing area, because the waves not too big and the wind blows continually.

This tourism object is located at Larangan Tokol village, Tlanakan district, about 4 km of Pamekasan city. It’s very beautiful especially during the night. This place has a big sulphur spring and has many natural flame sources that often are beneficial for national sport events. It is a hilly area with beautiful scenery and surrounded by a fertile fruit producing area.

This tourism object is ever used to flame the fire of PON that held in 10 November Surabaya stadiums. The west side of this place is a hot water pool, about 100 m by foot. The western of this place there is Ki Muko grave. It was said that his stick can make the beautiful fire by stuck to the ground.

This tourism object is a pilgrimage object visited by many tourists out of Madura Island. It’s part of a series of Walisongo tour as form of vow of the poor farmers who have been successful. It’s located at Badung village, Proppo district, about 12 km from Pamekasan city.


    It’s a reflection of King Baladewa’s movement with strong character, stiff, open minded and straight in revealing every problem is identical Madurese character.


    A unify of drama, movement, music art and a piece of joke illustrates a story of a man who pretending to be an obedient Dutch soldier but as a matter of fact opposing the Dutch government.



The farmers are very familiar with this kind of plants. It has economic value because almost all farmers want to plant tobacco during the dry season. This main plantation can increase the living standard of the farmers. In 2000, the development of tobacco production reached 111,63 ton with 30,488 Ha area.


    This plant is one of the plantation yields that grow in Pamekasan. It has restorative power particularly for beauty and health need by herb and medicine factories. The price is reasonable enough. The production capacity is very highest especially when the yell ripe. In Pamekasan the herb-chili production development in 2000 reached 217,90 ton.


Orange is an excellent commodity for most farmers in pamekasan because the planting is done on a large scale. Orange fruit from Pamekasan is well known for its sweet flavor, therefore the yirld of production is marketed is supermarkets of big cities like

Jakarta and Surabaya and other cities.


One of the distinctive features in Madura Island is the specific race of Madurese cow. Raising cow has been performed with the effort of fattening up cow, the brooding system. This system makes high sell price. The cow raising effort has good prospect considering the increasing demand of beef cattle. Apart from meeting the local need, the cow marketing is also under-gone out of Madura e.g Surabaya, Jakarta and other cities. The cattle population development in 2000 reached 113,704 cattle.



Madura strait contains a good level of salinity, thus can produce enough salt for Pamekasan regency. The production capacity can be counted in every salt field cultivated by farmers. Each field extends to 2000 m, farmers can produce salt 7 ton every harvest. Until ap present there are many industry centers / factories, which manufacture iodized circulating in all of Indonesian regions.

The water in Madura, mainly Pamekasan is a priceless gift for us because it’s great biological resources such as seaweed. It proves from the production, every 1-quintal seed is equal with 1-ton fresh seaweed. Seaweed production in Pamekasan reaches 500-ton wet or 75-ton dry seaweed every year. This commodity is very suitable for cosmetic, which up to now has been, go public to several foreign countries.


Recently, the fishing of small sea fish has been intensified because of the high economic potential. It has been proved by met the export demand particularly to Japan. These small sea fish business areas are located at Pademawu, Larangan and Waru regency, which absorb hundreds of Laborforces.



The writing Batik is one of the Madurese handicrafts, in Pamekasan particularly. This handicraft always makes a good progress from year to year. The marketing can event meets the demand in and about out of the counry. In 2000, batik business units reached 931 units and were supported by 1771 labor forces and investment value amounting to Rp. 66.547.000. In batik centers the craftsmen can produce batik in various kinds, from bed cover, long cloth, sarong, dress, shirt, etc. As well as unbleached plain cloth material varies in accordance with the demand and need of the society from first-rate material, polisma, primissima to silk. The Madurese writing batik has superiority for having typical character unique.


    Beside the writing batik, minor industry sector having good prospect is Madurese herb. The presence of this product is inspired by Madurese skill in compounding herb consist of various kinds of herb plants grown in yards. This is done from generation to generation. They say most people truly believe and trust the extraordinary herb. Until now on, the orders for the herb always have been making significant progress.


    One of the other significant nature potentials in Pamekasan is Phosphate stone content. It’s very suitable for fertilizer raw material Triple Super Phosphaten (TSP) and Double Super Phosphate and acid industry. In Pamekasan this mineral has spreading area 100m2 – 150m2 with backup volume 15m2 – 30m2 and 2m depth. This mineral can be found in the north region of Pamekasan regency.

Bull Racing in Madura

The sea crossing from East Java's mainland to the small island of Madura takes just half an hour. A regular ferry service transports cars and passengers across the narrow strait between Surabaya's harbour of Tanjung Perak and Kamal on Madura's south west coast. Measuring some 160 km in length and about 40 across at its widest point, Madura supports a population of close to 2.3 million inhabitants, most of whom are farmers or fishermen.

Although the island is a part of the province of East Java, it is home to a completely separate ethnic group, which has its own language and customs. Renowned over the centuries for their sailing prowess, the Madurese are a tough, high spirited people, whose character appears well suited to the harsh climate and dry landscape.

Madura's most famous attraction is the annual bull racing (kerapan sapi), which takes place during the dry season in August and September. These exciting and colourful tournaments consist of a race between two pairs of bulls, each team pulling a rider and sled. Following a series of heats, which take place in different parts of the island for some weeks, the highlight of the season occurs when the finals are held in Pamekasan, Madura's capital. Recently a new bull racing stadium has been built in Bangkalan with the object of attracting more tourists to the island.

Madura is not so large and it is possible to travel the whole way round it in a couple of days. However, there is quite alot to see and more time is needed to explore even the major places of interest.

Starting at Kamal and moving along the southern coast, the first stop is the town of Sampang, near to which lies Camplong Beach. The best time to be here is shortly after sunrise or at dusk, when the blue sailed Madurese fishing boats (prahu) are either arriving or setting off. The air is clearer at these times and from the beach there is a good view of the mountain ranges on the mainland to the south.

Just over 30 km beyond Sampang is the capital city of Pamekasan. There is not much for the visitor to see here unless it is bull racing season. The town of Sumenep on the north eastern end of the island, while smaller than Pamekasan, is more vibrant and has some interesting historical sites as well as some good beaches nearby. The city's old palace (kraton) and museum are worth visiting, as is the large Jamiq mosque with its green tiered roof. Above the town is the royal mausoleum called Asta Tinggi, from where there are good views of the town and coast beyond.

The two main beaches near Sumenep are Slopeng and Lombang. The former, which lies on the north coast some 21 km from the town, is a beautiful location with tall palm trees shading the edge of the beach. At weekends and on holidays Slopeng is popular with families from Sumenep, but otherwise it is quite deserted. A few of the local village people have set up stalls and offer fresh young coconuts and Siwalan fruit, taken directly from the surrounding trees, to passing travellers.

At Lombang, on Madura's north eastern point, a long and narrow stretch of white sand is backed by short cemara trees. Aside from the occasional fisherman the beach is deserted, making it the perfect place for 'getting away from it all'.

A narrow but good road runs the whole way down Madura's attractive north coast, from Slopeng to Bangkalan. There are many small villages and quiet beaches to stop at on the way, in particular the fishing communities of Pasongsongan and Pasean, where narrow estuaries are packed solid with colourful sailing boats.

Before arriving at Bangkalan, which is the last major town before Kamal, it is well worth visiting the Aermata tomb of Ratu Ibu, who was the consort of Prince Cakraningrat I of Madura and a descendant of Sunan Giri, one of the famed Wali Songo, or 'nine saints', who originally propagated the Muslim religion in Java. The tomb, which is set on a hill about 4 km inland from the town of Arosbaya and approached by a long flight of steps, dates back to the mid 17th century.

Madura is also a well known center for batik production and has its own unique style. In the performing arts, the island is famous for its topeng dalang, a mask dance/theatre, which at one time was only seen within the royal palace.

Rabu, 12 Desember 2007

oral communication development through aquisition activities

Young Children's Oral Language Development

By Celia Genishi

The development of oral language is one of the child's most natural--and impressive--accomplishments. This [Eric] digest presents an overview of the process and mechanics of language development, along with implications for practice.

When and How Language is Learned

Almost all children learn the rules of their language at an early age through use, and over time, without formal instruction. Thus one source for learning must be genetic. Humans beings are born to speak; they have an innate gift for figuring out the rules of the language used in their environment. The environment itself is also a significant factor. Children learn the specific variety of language (dialect) that the important people around them speak.

Children do not, however, learn only by imitating those around them. We know that children work through linguistic rules on their own because they use forms that adults never use, such as "I goed there before" or "I see your feets." Children eventually learn the conventional forms, "went" and "feet", as they sort out for themselves the exceptions to the rules of English syntax. As with learning to walk, learning to talk requires time for development and practice in everyday situations. Constant correction of a child's speech is usually unproductive.

Children seem born not just to speak, but also to interact socially. Even before they use words, they use cries and gestures to convey meaning; they often understand the meanings that others convey. The point of learning language and interacting socially, then, is not to master rules, but to make connections with other people and to make sense of experiences (Wells, 1986). In summary, language occurs through an interaction among genes (which hold innate tendencies to communicate and be sociable), environment, and the child's own thinking abilities.

When children develop abilities is always a difficult question to answer. In general, children say their first words between 12 and 18 months of age. They begin to use complex sentences by the age of 4 to 4 1/2 years. By the time they start kindergarten, children know most of the fundamentals of their language, so that they are able to converse easily with someone who speaks as they do (that is, in their dialect). As with other aspects of development, language acquisition is not predictable. One child may say her first word at 10 months, another at 20 months. One child may use complex sentences at 5 1/2 years, another at 3 years.

Oral Language Components

Oral language, the complex system that relates sounds to meanings, is made up of three components: the phonological, semantic, and syntactic (Lindfors, 1987). The phonological component involves the rules for combining sounds. Speakers of English, for example, know that an English word can end, but not begin, with an "-ng" sound. We are not aware of our knowledge of these rules, but our ability to understand and pronounce English words demonstrates that we do know a vast number of rules.

The semantic component is made up of morphemes, the smallest units of meaning that may be combined with each other to make up words (for example, "paper" + "s" are the two morphemes that make up "papers"), and sentences (Brown, 1973). A dictionary contains the semantic component of a language, and reflects not just what words make up that language, but also what words (and meanings) are important to the speakers of the language.

The syntactic component consists of the rules that enable us to combine morphemes into sentences. As soon as a child uses two morphemes together, as in "more cracker," she is using a syntactic rule about how morphemes are combined to convey meaning. Like the rules making up the other components, syntactic rules become increasingly complex as the child develops. From combining two morphemes, the child goes on to combine words with suffixes or inflections ("-s" or "-ing", as in "papers" and "eating") and eventually creates questions, statements, commands, etc. She also learns to combine two ideas into one complex sentence, as in "I'll share my crackers if you share your juice." Of course speakers of a language constantly use these three components of language together, usually in social situations.

Some language experts would add a fourth component: pragmatics, which deals with rules of language use. Pragmatic rules are part of our communicative competence, our ability to speak appropriately in different situations, for example, in a conversational way at home and in a more formal way at a job interview. Young children need to learn the ways of speaking in the day care center or school where, for example, teachers often ask rhetorical questions. Learning pragmatic rules is as important as learning the rules of the other components of language since people are perceived and judged based on both what they say and how and when they say it.

Nurturing Language Development

Parents and caregivers need to remember that language in the great majority of individuals develops very efficiently. Adults should try not to focus on "problems," such as the inability to pronounce words as adults do (for example, when children pronounce r's like w's). Most children naturally outgrow such things, which are a tiny segment of the child's total repertoire of language. However, if a child appears not to hear what others say to her; if family members and those closest to her find her difficult to understand; or if she is noticeably different in her communicative abilities from those in her age range, adults may want to seek advice from specialists in children's speech, language and hearing.

Teachers can help sustain natural language development by providing environments full of language development opportunities. Here are some general guidelines for teachers, parents, and other caregivers:

Understand that every child's language or dialect is worthy of respect as a valid system for communication. It reflects the identities, values, and experiences of the child's family and community.

Treat children as if they are conversationalists, even if they are not yet talking. Children learn very early about how conversations work (taking turns, looking attentively, using facial expressions, etc.) as long as they have experiences with conversing adults.

Encourage interaction among children. Peer learning is an important part of language development, especially in mixed-age groups. Activities involving a wide range of materials should promote talk. There should be a balance between individual activities and those that nurture collaboration and discussion, such as dramatic play, block-building, book-sharing, or carpentry.

Remember that parents, caregivers, teachers, and guardians are the chief resources in language development. Children learn much from each other, but adults are the main conversationalists, questioners, listeners, responders, and sustainers of language development and growth in the child-care center or classroom. Continue to encourage interaction as children come to understand written language. Children in the primary grades can keep developing oral abilities and skills by consulting with each other, raising questions, and providing information in varied situations. Every area of the curriculum is enhanced through language, so that classrooms full of active learners are hardly ever silent.