Rhythm and Expression in The Cat in the Hat

Mara Breen, Sarah Weidman, Katharine Guarino


In recent years, there has been increasing interest in whether rhythmic interventions support young children’s literacy development [1]. To begin to explore this connection, we assessed several aspects of rhythmicity and expressivity of productions of the notably rhythmic and rhyming children’s book, The Cat in The Hat by Dr. Seuss. Participants subjectively rated either the rhythmicity or expressivity of speech taken from recordings of the book read aloud. These perceptual ratings were correlated with acoustic measures of rhythmicity and expressivity. Moreover, we observed a surprising lack of consistency between perceptual ratings of rhythmicity and expressivity. However, we observed a consistent relationship between the perceptual ratings of the first couplet of verses and the second. These findings can inform our investigation of the role of rhythm in literacy development.


 DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2014-81

Cite as: Breen, M., Weidman, S., Guarino, K. (2014) Rhythm and Expression in The Cat in the Hat. Proc. 7th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2014, 472-476, DOI: 10.21437/SpeechProsody.2014-81.


@inproceedings{Breen2014,
  author={Mara Breen and Sarah Weidman and Katharine Guarino},
  title={{Rhythm and Expression in The Cat in the Hat}},
  year=2014,
  booktitle={Proc. 7th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2014},
  pages={472--476},
  doi={10.21437/SpeechProsody.2014-81},
  url={http://dx.doi.org/10.21437/SpeechProsody.2014-81}
}