In honor of Memorial Day, we will be doing a Flashback Friday
to our most popular blog post.
Check out our fantastic top four activities that get your toddler on their "Way to Words!"
Top 4 Activities to Improve Your Toddler's
Speech and Language
With other children: Little ones will learn about a whole new world from others who are learning and exploring too. By watching and interacting with their peers, children learn new actions, new vocabulary, and concepts. Through exploration, children learn that they are active members in their environment and that they can have an effect on people and things around them.
With parents: Children learn how to use and manipulate toys, how to make requests, and communication rules, such as turn taking.
Pauses: Give your little one a chance to chime in during play. You can ask a simple question or give a simple direction, then wait 3-4 seconds for him or her to respond. For example, you can put down a red block and a blue block and say, "I need the blue block. Give me the blue block, please."
For more about play, click here
A routine is a short series of sequential events that is repeated often (ex.: getting dressed, bathing, brushing your teeth, getting ready for school or the beach).
Narrating: Talking about your routine as you perform it, teaches children new words and helps them make associations between words and objects or actions. For example, if you talk about the steps while brushing your child's teeth, your little one will learn that a toothbrush is the small brush that helps clean his or her teeth.
Less is more: Keep steps short and direct so you don't overwhelm your child with too much information at one time.
Rhyming Routines: For example, "This Little Piggy" is a great rhyming routine. Pause at the end to let your child chime in "weee weee weee." See if your child will request the rhyme again. If your little one points to his or her foot, you can say, "Again??" and then perform the routine again.
Pauses: Don't forget to pause occasionally to let your child respond. For example, "Now it's time to brush our ... (pause for a few seconds)... teeth!" Your child may or may not chime in, but it's important to give them an opportunity to do so.
For more about routines, click here
Vocabulary: Children are better able to retrieve and recall new words when they are learned along with other, categorically related words. New categories such as transportation fruits, vegetables, and tools can be taught through reading aloud to your little one.
Expanding: If your child points to a picture and says, "dog," you can say, "Yes, it is a dog. A dog says, 'woof'."
Asking questions: If it's a familiar book, you may want to pause and point to a picture while asking, "What is that?" or "What sound does the dog make?" If your little one doesn't respond, you can say, "That is a ...." in a fun, cheerful tone.
Less is more: Using less language provides more opportunity for children to understand and process more information. Try not to overwhelm your child with too many questions at a time. Children's brains are still growing and processing a ton of new information at one time (sounds, shapes, colors, smells, textures, and emotions). Give them a chance to take it all in.
For more about reading, click here
Vocabulary: Singing songs teaches children new vocabulary such as animal sounds, shapes, and the alphabet.
Engagement: Singing also engages children in enjoyable social interactions.
Less is more: Choosing one or two songs to sing per week and repeating them slowly, allows your child to learn the patterns and words of the song. Pause as though you forgot the last word in a line to see if your child can fill it in for you. For example, when singing "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star," you could sing, "Up above the world so...... (pause for 3 seconds).... high."
For more on singing, click here