language, parenting, Uncategorized, Uncategorized

Talk to Your Children!

Did you know that your children’s
language growth is strongly influenced by how much you talk to them? Your
children learn by listening to you and imitating you. The more you talk to
them, the better. You can use daily activities as opportunities to teach
language and make language learning fun. You can pick a few words to target
during each daily activity.  These are
some simple words (see table) that can be taught during routine activities.  Repetition is the key! Repeat these words or
short phrases every time you get a chance. These will help build your children’s
receptive and expressive vocabulary and language. Try this with babies and
toddlers who are just learning language as well as older children who are
language delayed. 

Mealtime
Yummy
More [food]
Cup
Juice
All done
Bathtime
Wash
Bubble
Head
Tummy
Toes
Playtime
Me
Give me
Got ya
Ball
Yay
Storytime
Book
Open
Turn [page]
Point
Look
Bedtime
Change
Sleep
Kiss
Hug
Night
Playgound
Slide
Swing
Up
Down
Go

Talk to them when you are doing
routine tasks around the house: “I turned on the water. I am washing the
dishes. I am putting the dishes away.” Try the 3 As: allow, adapt, and add
(Manolson, Ward, Dodington, 1995).  Allow
your children to process what you are saying by waiting and listening to them,
adapt to share the moment with them by showing interest, then add to their
experience by adding to their words and actions. I recommend this book: You Make The Difference in Helping Your Child Learn, to parents of children who are language delayed. 
                                
Let’s see what research says about talking to your children –> Hart and Risley (1995) studied
language acquisition in young children. They followed 42 families from the time
their children said words at about 1 year until they were about 3 years old. Their
study showed that children from families who were on welfare heard about 600
words per hour, children from working class families heard 1,200 words per
hour, and children from professional families heard 2,100 words. Listening to
more words led to better vocabulary and language knowledge. This longitudinal
study examined the children’s performance in school when they were 9 years
old as well, and the researchers concluded that the more words the children
heard from their parents or caregivers, the higher their IQ and the better they
performed in school. So put those smartphones away and start talking to your little pumpkins when you can. 
Have a wonderful weekend!
Sanaz

References:

Hart, B., & Risley, T. (1995). Meaningful differences in the everyday experience of young american children. (4th printing ed.). Brookes Publishing.

Manolson, A., Ward, B., & Dodington, N. (1995). You make the difference: In helping yourh child learn. Hanen Centre.

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3 Comment

  1. Reply
    Ryan Edwards
    June 11, 2013 at 5:53 am

    Good post. It's amazing how simple it is and how many parents I tell everyday about how they need to just talk more to their kids. Unfortunately, I don't think a lot of them do it!

  2. Reply
    lovedelara
    June 11, 2013 at 7:31 am

    Great read, thanks!

  3. Reply
    abuzar
    June 25, 2013 at 12:27 am

    @Ryan, yes! We have to keep reminding them. @lovedelara, glad you enjoyed the post 🙂

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