Part of an ongoing series highlighting the easy, no-cost ways that you can prepare your child for learning to read, today Christina will be discussing the benefits of talking with your child.
Talking with your child is one of the best ways to help develop your child’s language skills. Children learn a language by hearing it spoken. They learn about the world around them, how to communicate with others, how to express feelings, as well as learn vocabulary and language skills that will help them when learning to read.
You can speak with your child anywhere. Speak with them about morning routines or chores around the house. Listen to what your child says in return. Answer their questions and expand on their statements. “Yes, that is a big dog. It is a St Bernard.” “What color is his coat?”
When you are in the car, point out things of interest, talk about signs you see. Can they guess what the signs mean? Even if your child is not talking yet, go ahead and carry on conversations. It may feel silly at first, but remember that their minds are like sponges and are soaking up every word they hear. You are teaching them needed vocabulary and word structure, as well as stimulating brain development and creating a stronger bond with your child.
Some other great opportunities to chat during the day include at the store, waiting in line, during bath time, before bedtime, out for a walk, during meals, at a playground, the library and reading books.