Activities to promote child speech and language development
Welcome to the Child Speech and Language Development Resources page. Here you will find lots of useful downloads and PDF’s with information and ideas to help with your child’s speech and language development. Watching your child’s communication development is an exciting time for most parents. Most children develop speech, language and social skills naturally during the first few years of life. As parents it is important to remember that these first few years are vital and there is a lot you can do to help develop these skills and put in place many crucial building blocks for the future. This section contains lots of ideas and activities to help you develop your child’s speech, language and communication development.
Using Role play and pretend play to enhance speech and language
Dressing up is great fun and playing different roles will expand your child’s imagination. In fact you do not even have to dress up to do role play. Games involving different characters will allow you to introduce lots of new related language and stretch your child’s creative play skills. Most types of interaction through play will have a positive effect on speech and language acquisition.
Speech chart for children reaching regular milestones
This document gives you a quick reference guide to your child’s speech and language development up to 6 years of age.
Promoting speech and language development while taking apart in everyday activities
Using everyday activities can be a great way to practice speech, language and literacy skills. These activities can also change a mundane event into a pleasurable one. The child may also not realise that you are practicing speech and language skills because the activity will be fun.
Play and Games and Speech and Language Development
Play is absolutely vital to a child’s healthy development. A child’s exposure to play provides physical, intellectual, emotional and social development. Some research shows that up to 75% of brain development happens after birth, and the early years of a child’s life are the foundation for healthy growth and development.
One way to judge your child’s progress is to keep a record of their development. Keep a log of new words that they use and try to use those words yourself to reinforce them.
Listening, attending and observing
Listening and attention skills are the building blocks of speech and language development. The acquisition of these skills is vital in the early years if you want your child to be successful at school. The development of these skills is facilitated by interaction with others, with having a shared focus with others, and playing in an environment that is free of distractions.
Good modelling for speech and language
An important aspect of learning speech is listening. A child learns new sounds and words by listening to those around him. This is why it is important to provide good, clear speech for the child to listen to.
Fun activities for the baby or child that is not talking
Some children are late to start talking, or use very little speech. If this describes your child the first priority is probably to have their hearing checked by an Audiologist and/or see a qualified speech and language therapist/pathologist. There are also many fun activities that you can carry out to help encourage your child to make some sounds.
Communicating with your baby
Young babies may not be talking but they are communicating in lots of ways through cries, sounds, facial expressions, looking at things and body movements. We must be aware of these things and try and interpret them because by responding to them we encourage the baby to communicate more.
Building a language rich environment
Building a language rich environment is, on the face of it, is an easy thing to do. Unfortunately, in today’s busy households and with the busy lifestyles of parents who have to work full-time, it is harder to find the time to spend with your children than many of us realize. However, there are many opportunities to use and teach language in everyday situations and create a good environment for learning.
Activities to develop early Social Skills
Day to day interaction and play will develop children’s social skills naturally. Children will take time to learn the rules of interaction such as turn taking and eye contact, but there are activities you can incorporate into your play which will help children understand these rules.
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