As adults, it is often difficult for us to perceive of a time when we had little or no language and speech development, but there was a time! Speech and language can be very difficult skills for some children to develop. Often a delay in language development is associated with learning disabilities such as autism dyspraxia or an hearing impairment. Almost ten percent of children aged seven have some form of language under development. A child needs early intellectual stimulation in order to gain vital language and speech skills. Some children need more help than others, but all children can make significant improvements given a little extra time and attention at home as well as early intervention by experienced practioners, if need be.
A child is ready from birth:
Did you know that a baby has all the vital brain nerve cells at birth in order to learn speech and language? We are talking about 100 billion. These nerves cells have just not been wired together, so to speak. During the first few years of a baby’s life these cells start forming connections that will influence their language and speech skills. During this time the baby is learning from its environment and the physical, emotional and psychological connections it has with its immediate family network. Thus, those first three years are vital.
Let’s do baby talk? No.
1: Spending time with your baby, talking and listening to them is a great way to develop speech and language skills. Listening to them? Yes, take turns to have a conversation, you may not understand them , but they will be learning the skill of listening and taking turns. Babies love to hear the sound of your voice and watch your mouth and expressions as you talk to them. Talk about things you are doing and explain what you are doing .
2: Use short simple sentences and repeat what you say. Such as , ‘Lovely baby’, ‘You are a lovely baby’,’ How is Mel today?’ ‘You look happy today’, ‘Mel is happy today’
3: Use a higher pitch when you are talking to babies, why do we all have that monotone baby voice?
4: Extend the sounds of words so that babies can hear the vowels – like meeeet.
5: Babies love to look at lips and facial expressions. They cannot do this if you are too far away, so stay close when you are talking to a baby.
6: Read books to your baby and listen to audio books such as nursery rhymes and songs. Sing songs and dance with your baby as babies love to dance!
Babies just ‘wanna’ have fun!
Have a lovely day and do leave any tips that you have, I love to hear from you all.