Little babies enjoy hearing the recognizable voices of their parents. What fun it is to see how your baby reacts to you as you talk or sing to him or her with their charming babbling or cooing! It can develop into a real “conversation” as you talk and your baby responds with a coo or babble or smile. It is an amazing part of language development to be able to observe.
Here are a few suggestions to keep that language development with your child going and growing.
• Enlarge on what your child says. If your toddler says “Doggie,” you might say “Where did your doggie go?”
• Keep talking to your as you do even simple everyday tasks, like when you are doing the dishes, bathing your child, buying groceries. The more language your child hears, the more words he or she is exposed to.
• Don’t forget about reciting nursery rhymes, doing finger plays, games, and the classic action songs like “this little piggie went to market” or “patty cake.”
• When your child does an activity explain what he or she is doing—“I see you are brushing your dolly’s hair,” or “you are building with your blocks,” or “you are playing with your blue ball.”
• Read, read, read to your child everyday.
• Don’t forget to point out things in nature—as you take a walk in the lovely woods of northern Michigan, point out the trees, flowers and birds to add to your child’s vocabulary
The more language your child hears, the more words he or she is exposed to, the more capable your child will be as a learner of language. And there is a direct correlation between a good vocabulary and the ability to be a good reader.
Some great sources to build your library at home are thrift stores, bargain bins, gifts, book exchanges with other parents and your local library. In Manistee County the library is located at 95 Maple Street. They have a terrific children’s room and a weekly story hour. Reading to children is not only one of the great joys of parenthood, it also really aids in language development.
So enjoy talking, reading, singing and conversing with your little one!!