All children, no matter how young, listen to people talk. It is how they learn new words and begin to understand the world around them.
EARLY LEARNING TIPS
- Talk with your child as you go about your day: making food, walking around the neighborhood, getting ready for bed, any time.
You can add to their vocabulary when you respond to what your child says. If your toddler says “truck,” you can say, “We saw a big green truck today.”
You can respond to babbling or even silence.
Use new words. If your child says “banana,” you can say, “Do you want a banana? That’s very healthy food.”
Talk in the language most comfortable for you. Babies’ growing brains can easily learn more than one language.
- Observe this Father-Son Conversation:
EARLY LITERACY ACTIVITIES
- Ask “what if” questions as you walk outside. What if it never got dark? What if there were no birds?
- Go for a walk with your child and point to all of the circles that you see.
- Point to an object and ask your child to say the name for it and a word that rhymes with it.
- Cut out pictures from magazines and have your child practice matching the pictures to the letter sound you say. “B, b-b-b-b-b.”
- Ask your child to compare objects around the house. Which is smaller? Which is longer?
- Tell your child a story about something funny that happened to you when you were young.
- Emphasize the beginning sounds in words. “Let’s eat a p-pp-peach!”
- After your child tells a story, ask questions to get more details.
The National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has prepared resources to track developmental milestones.
The most important time for a child’s development is the first 5 years of life. If you have questions or concerns about your child’s development, learning, or behavior, reach out to Help Me Grow. Getting support is crucial to ensure your child reaches their optimal development.