What Are Some Useful Tools For Language Development?
Speech therapists can play a vital role in a child’s language development, but it is also important for children to be active participants in this process as well. Several studies have shown that children who are read to and spoken to frequently in early childhood will have larger vocabularies and better grammar than those who are not.
Here are some useful tips to help nurture language development in your child:
- Narrating the day as it unfolds is extremely beneficial for your child. As you give him or her a bath, talk about the warmth of the water, or the soap and shampoo, and the process of getting dry. It might not seem important, but this early exposure to language will have a positive impact.
- Expand your child’s vocabulary by naming body parts and asking them to identify what each one does. For example, when identifying the nose, your child can explain that it is used to smell flowers, brownies, or soap.
- Always use speech that is clear and simple for your child to model.
- When asking your child questions, pose them in a way that offers a choice. For example, ask, “Do you want to wear a blue or a green shirt?”
- As a fun learning activity, sing simple songs and nursery rhymes with your child. This will help demonstrate rhythm and speech patterns.
- Add another facet to storytelling and use photographs of familiar people and places to retell events that have either already happened, or be creative and make up a new story.
- Before speaking, always make sure you have your child’s attention.
- When your child speaks, acknowledge and encourage their efforts. Indicate that you understand what was said by either responding or fulfilling the request, if applicable or appropriate.
- Pause after speaking to give your child a chance to contribute and start a dialogue. This will help him or her build vocabulary. Try introducing new words into the conversation and provide its definition, or use it in a context in which it is easy to understand.
- Take your child out while shopping for groceries and discuss what you will purchase, how many items you need, and what you plan on making with them.
- A television is not just a form of entertainment. You can use it as a learning tool. Talk about what your child is watching, or have him or her take a guess at what might happen next. Discuss the characters and describe how they are feeling. Ask your child to explain what happened in the story. You can also have fun acting out a scene, or make it your own by reimagining the course of events.
- Encourage your child to provide directions and follow them. For example, if you are building a tower of blocks, let your child explain where to place them and follow the instructions. This will also be a good opportunity to talk about spatial relationships, such as first, middle, and last, or left and right.
Pediatric Speech Therapy
Speech and language therapy can provide life-changing treatment, support, and care for children who have difficulties with communication. At Home Healthcare has highly experienced speech therapists who work closely with your child’s physician to develop an individualized care plan that is tailored for his or her specific needs. Speech therapy can be incredibly beneficial for children with a number of diagnoses, including autism, cerebral palsy, speech delay, developmental delay, cleft palate, traumatic brain injuries (TBI), Asperger’s syndrome, language learning disabilities, and more.
Call us today at (877) 959-9093 to learn more about the services we offer.