Encourage Language Development in Your Preschooler
Children's language development is likely to progress more
rapidly when they are given frequent opportunities to interact with both
children and adults.
Talking with adults
Children develop and improve
their speech and language skills by talking with their parents and other
adults. These discussions also help children form mental images of people,
events, and places, which are important milestones in thinking and learning.
Talking with adults introduces proper grammar and complex sentences to
children. But your child can pick up poor grammar too. Your child learns from even very simple conversations. During ages 4 to 5, your child is likely to learn many swear words. Your child will hear adults swear when they are angry or stressed. And your child will find that people react strongly whenever he or she uses swear words. Try to be a good role model and not use swear words. Also, try to get your child to not use swear words.
Reading to your child daily helps him or her to develop speech and
language skills. Reading together also offers a time of quiet comfort and
Parents often gain more insight into their children's
feelings and thoughts as language skills increase. Sometimes conversations with
young children turn up important fears or
anxieties that parents can help manage. Keep calm when
your child tells you something disturbing. Children do not always express
themselves using the same language as adults. For example, a child may say
"Johnny wants me to jump off the building at school" and really mean that he is
afraid of using certain equipment on the playground.
Talking with other children
Children who frequently
play with others who are about the same age usually develop expressive language
skills more quickly than those who have contact only with adults. Young
children speak very directly and simply, which helps other children learn
Limit TV time to 2 hours a day or less. TV does
not seem to encourage or support children's development of speech or language
skills. In general, spoken words make little impression unless they are in the
context of a conversation with someone the child knows and cares about.
Primary Medical Reviewer
John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
Specialist Medical Reviewer
Louis Pellegrino, MD - Developmental Pediatrics
February 23, 2011
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
February 23, 2011
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
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