small change goes to---> BIG IMPROVEMENTS
Often the easiest way to improve your child's language skills
is by making a few small changes , which can lead to big improvements. The
first step is to choose a few daily routines , such as meal time , bath time,
and bed time , when you talk with your child using special techniques.
these times, pay special attention to the way you are talking . Here area
few tips :
talk about what you are doing NOW, not about things that happened
earlier in the day or that will be happening later.
Use short sentences and
basic vocabulary , but use correct grammar instead of "baby talk"
Speech and Language is best learned under natural conditions of
playing and growing up.Language is learned but is not taught. The best
environment for language development is natural and spontaneous. As a
parent you play a unique role in your child's speech and language
development .Your pre-school child spends the majority of the day with his
family.You are his world.You share many life experiences which require the use
of language. Your child does not learn the complicate use of language and
the complex processes of speech in formalized instruction . He learns language
best in the give and take of everyday life.
By paying special attention to
the language you use with your child , you create a communication situation that
is better for language learning.
WHAT ELSE CAN I DO ?
Once you become comfortable with these
special talking times, there are additional techniques that you want to use
during these interactions.
SELF-TALK : Describe what you are doing as you do it. Name
the actions as you perform them in your daily routines.Use sentences only
slightly longer or more complex than the speech pattern your child is
PARALLEL TALK : Describe what your child is doing as he does
it.Again , use sentence patterns only slightly longer than what your child is
EXPANDING : Add sentence structure to what your child says
.Respond with a slightly longer or more complex sentence.
Adult " Big Ball . This is ball . It is Joey's ball ."
EXTENDING : Add meaning to what your child says.Respond by telling
your child additional information.
Adult. " Ball is round .
Roll the ball.We can catch the ball.The ball is red."
TIPS FOR SPECIAL SITUATIONS
When you don't understand what your
child is trying to tell you .
Be responsive to your child's attempts to
communicate.If you don't understand , be honest and tell him.This will
help reduce frustrations and tantrums.The following steps may prove
A. First tell your child you didn't hear him and ask him to tell you
B. If you still do not understand him , ask him to show you what he
means or wants.
C. If communication is still unsuccessful , tell your child
you would like to help but don't understand.Let him know you will try again
WHEN YOUR CHILD IS MAKING SPEECH SOUNDS CORRECTLY
Avoid correction of your child's speech pattern.Your child may
often say words that do not sound like real words to you ( e.g. tani for candy).
Show your approval for his attempt to communicate.Repeat the word he said in the
correct adult term.Avoid telling your child that what he said was
incorrect.Negative feedback may decrease his attempts to speak.
Adult "Candy , Her is candy. Candy is sweet . Candy ."
CREATING A LANGUAGE RICH ENVIRONMENT
A child learns to talk by listening to those around him.This makes
you an important model and a valuable source of language input. You show your
child that things have names , words have meaning and language will get him what
HOW DO I PROVIDE THIS LANGUAGE RICH ENVIRONMENT ?
( the section on self talk and parallel talk is mentioned here
For the activity "talking a bath " you might say : "Joey taking a
bath" . Mommy turn on water . Water feels warm . Space . Slash. Splash the water
. Joey has duck . Duck is yellow . Duck swims . Here's the soap .Soap makes
bubbles .Mommy wash Joey . Mommy wash Joey's ear .Mommy wash Joey's nose.Joey
laughs.Joey is all washed.All done.
SPECIAL RECOMMENDATIONS FOR YOUR LANGUAGE STYLE
1. Speak in a slow but natural pattern. Use short phrases with
short but correct grammar. Your speech pattern should be only slightly more
complex that your child's .
2. Comment on what is happening .( e.g. self talk , parallel
3. Talk about what you and your childare doing now.Describe what
you are doing as you do it.
4.Let your child determine the direction of activity. You follow
his lead.He will be more apt to attend longer to an activity he finds
5. Avoid excessive use of wh and yes/no question patterns . ( e.g.
what is it ? , What's the doggie's name ? . Comment instead of
6. Be responsive to your child's attempts to communicate.If you
don't understand , be honest and tell him.This will help reduce frustrations and
tantrums .remember the ABC's
A. First tell him you didn't hear him and ask
him to tell you again.
B. If you still do not understand him , ask him to
show you what he means or wants.
C. If communication is still unsuccessful ,
tell your child you would like to help but don't understand.Let him know you
will try again later.
7. Avoid correction of your child's speech patterns. Your child may
often say words that do not sound like real words to you ( e.g. tani for
candy)Show your approval of his attempt to communicate.Repeat the word he said
in the correct adult form.Avoid telling your child that what he said was
incorrect. Negative feedback may further decrease his attempts to
Child : "tandi"
Adult : "Candy . Here is Candy . Candy is sweet .
Candy . "
8. Encourage requesting behavior.Your child will not develop
language skills for which he has no use.Encourage him to express his wants and
needs with words instead of gestures.(i.e. pointing)
Situation : A
child is reaching for a toy which has been placed out of reach.He is gesturing
and vocalizing that he needs help.
Response to behavior : "Ball. You want Ball. Ball. I'll give it to
you "Pause and provide your child time to ask. If he doesn't ask , provide an
opportunity to learn .Pick up an object . Say , "ball" . "tell me . "
"Ball".Pause and give him time to approximate the target word .If unsuccessful
repeat again .If he still does no respond , give the child the desired object.As
you give it to him , state the name and tell him about the object. For example ,
"Ball. Joey's Ball .Play Ball. Ball. "