TOP 4 WAYS PARENTS CAN HELP DEVELOP THEIR CHILD’S LANGUAGE SKILLS
From the moment your little one is born, they are absorbing the world around them. That’s why it’s such a great idea to connect with your children through language – even when they can’t talk back. What’s even more important is recognising that brain development is critical between the ages of two and seven. It can mould your child’s personality, build strong relationships and shape their speaking and listening skills.
To help your child’s language development, here are four activities that are fun and brain-stimulating.
1. READ TOGETHER EVERY DAY
Reading and storytelling is one of the best ways to help your little one develop their reading, talking and listening skills. And it really is as simple as sitting down with them and reading through a fun book at least once every day. After all, reading and sharing stories together can:
Help children learn how to focus, concentrate, communicate and build social skills.
Spark creativity and make them more curious about the world around them.
Separate reality from ‘make-believe’.
Support your child’s ability to learn new sounds, words and the early stages of a fully formed language.
2. MAKE MUSIC PART OF YOUR ROUTINE
Not only do children love listening to music and singing along themselves, but it’s a terrific way to support brain development and language skills. Studies show that children who grow up listening to music actually have stronger language skills because their brains have developed music-related connections.
How does it work? Well, listening to music helps us subconsciously retain words and expressions. Moreover, if the music is catchy and repetitive, it helps our brains create ‘patterns’ that makes it easier to remember new words.
3. TAKE A WALK AROUND THE NEIGHBOURHOOD
If it’s a beautiful day outside, why not take advantage of the good weather and go for a walk around your neighbourhood? Not only does it get your little one out of the house, but it can be a great time to develop their language skills.
While you’re walking around the streets and parks, point out things that they recognise and have them say the words aloud – “sky”, “trees”, “birds”, “grass”. If they aren’t sure what the name is for something, tell them what it is and have them repeat it. Then on the way home, ask them again and see if they remember!
4. USE DEVICES TO SUPPORT LANGUAGE LEARNING
Despite the stigma around screen time, as long as you set appropriate limits and monitor your child’s usage, having them learn on devices can be hugely beneficial to their language development.
There are lots of games and apps on the market – many of them for free – that can help your child read, write and learn new words. Here are just a few to get you started:
Sock Puppets – for oral language skills.
Sunshine Online – for reading skills.
Mazaam – for musical language learning.
HERITAGE HOUSE IS THE PERFECT PLACE FOR CHILDREN TO LEARN
At Heritage House, we take a holistic approach to childhood education and learning. That means recognising that all children need to be supported in their emotional, intellectual, physical and social wellbeing journeys.
We encourage children to explore their language learning through ongoing communication, and we love storytelling to help them learn about different cultures, new experiences and ways to build their imagination.