Last week was baby communication week, with a focus this year on listening to newborn babies.
When we think about child language acquisition, we are thinking about how language is gained and how it is developed. As soon as babies are born, they interact with the people around them, and their journey towards learning and using language begins.
Creating a language-rich environment may sound complicated. Thankfully, it’s not. It simply means ‘a place to talk’. It's the way you use your space to talk to your child, as well as the toys, books and activities you choose, to create a ‘language-rich environment’. Every response that is given to your child, whether that be a comment, a repetition of what they have said, or a new conversation with lovely words your child may not have heard before, can be defined as language rich.
As a parent, it can feel like there is constant pressure to spend money on toys for children. The choices when it comes to what toys are best for your child are impossibly endless, too. Is it better to opt for only wooden toys, or is plastic actually pretty fantastic?
When you think of grammar, your first thought might be punctuating sentences in an English lesson or some discussion about why children at primary school need to know about fronted adverbials. (Whatever that means!) However, our understanding of grammar begins a long time before we start school, with even babies noticing and learning about the grammar used in the languages spoken around them.
Here at My First Five Years, we know how important it is to empower parents with knowledge about speech development. We consider speech to be one of the most important parts of a child’s development journey. It’s a process that begins before birth as your baby listens to the sounds around them in the womb! As your baby is born and grows, this development continues supports them to communicate as they use words to represent objects and experiences. Let’s not forget also that your baby’s language development is a source of great excitement for you, the parent; as they move from making sounds to the amazing moment when they utter their first word!
Whether you have a big garden, a small garden or no garden at all, doing some planting and digging together can be a great way to support your child’s language development. In this blog, we will explore a little more about how getting outside and gardening can give you opportunities to chat and support your child’s language development.
At My First Five Years, we know that babies, toddlers and children learn through play, but what does learning through play look like for your baby? In this blog, we will explore play and young babies, thinking about how you can play with your baby and how this play supports their development.
For the first few weeks of your baby's life, crying is an important way for them to communicate their needs. They will, in the next few weeks, start to smile, look and move as a means of communicating but crying will remain an important part of their communication. In this blog, we will look at what is known about crying and young babies and some of the things that might soothe your newborn baby.
Nursery rhymes are fun, joyful and often silly. They offer children a chance of learning at their own pace. The very nature of this can assist young children in becoming proficient readers. When hearing, learning, and reciting them children, not only enjoy the pleasure of words, but they also learn early reading skills. Phonemic skill development gained from nursery rhymes has even been scientifically shown to significantly improve reading, spelling, and other literacy skills.