Parents and early school teachers have a crucial role to play in children’s language development. As per studies, children, who are read to and spoken with, have a bigger vocabulary and an enhanced grammatical awarenesscompared to those who aren’t.
Following are some tips to help in your child’s language development recommended by the best schools in Beirut:
Talk to Them
Teachers and parents can help by constantly talking to the child. Narrate the events of the day as they emerge. “Today, we will learn nursery rhymes. After that, we will have lunch. Then, we will go for a short walk in the playground. You can play there for one hour. After this, you can travel back to your home in the school bus…” and so on and on.
Read to Them
One can never be too early to start reading to children. A good predictor of kids’ reading habits is how much parents and early school teachers read to them. You can begin with simple books and advance to picture books and long stories, as the child grows older. You can even organize story time at school libraries or bookstores. Story times will help pre-schoolers develop a taste for language and reading.
Reading to your child exposes him/her to a whole range of activities andtriggers their thought processes, including those of imagination and literacy.
Create Print-Rich Atmosphere
You can create a reading ready atmosphere at home and school by filling it with various printed material, such as brochures, magazines, newspapers, and books. Children can be encouraged to explore those avenues. Make the process of reading a part of recreation and daily activities.
Use Picture Books
Reading picture books to children provides them with great opportunities for developing richness and volume of words. It is tough to engage in meaningful conversation the whole day. But picture books offer the right opportunity. There is a specific theme and storyline to discuss after the storybook is explored. This helps spark meaningful conversation with children.
Enjoy Music Jointly
Small children love music and dance. When they listen to lively songs, like ‘TwinkleTwinkle Little Star” or “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” they get hooked on the music and develop an understanding of words, music, and rhythm.
Find stories filled with adventure, conflict, characters, and a happy ending. Make sure stories are at the level of the children, so they can understand the plot and not feel frustrated by the story’s complexity.
Follow the Child’s Lead
When the child is intrigued by a particular picture or story, continue talking about it. Repeat his/her babble, ask questions, and interact with him/her. You can even tape the baby talk and play it back.
Avoid criticizing the child’s speech patterns or articulation style. Instead, repeat the child’s statements back to him/her with correct word usage and pronunciation. Praise the child for his/her efforts.
Reduce TV and Computer Time
As per the American Academy of Paediatrics, kids younger than 2 should not watch any television, and kids of over 2 years should watch only 2 hours of quality programs per day. Though some educational programs may be useful, the TV, in general, cannot interact with children.This iscounterproductive tochildren’s language development.
These are some tips to help developchildren’s language skills.