Communiction: Its Importance In Literacy Development

Bonding and interacting with your baby or child helps create a sense of security in him, and a desire for him to interact with you in return.

 

You might notice your baby responds to your smiles and baby talk. She might try to imitate your sounds and facial expressions.

 

When you repeat your toddler’s babble, it lets her know she’s communicating. Singing to her teaches her about the rise and fall of sounds. It also introduces her to the music and stories of her culture.

 

All of these back-and-forth interactions are getting your child ready for talking and socialising.

 

What you can do

  • Copy the sounds your baby makes and don’t be afraid to use baby talk – it helps babies understand how language is put together.

 

  • Sing with your child..

 

  • Talk to your child about the everyday things you’re doing and seeing together. For example, ‘Let’s get the washing now’, ‘Look at the red bird’ or ‘Yum, what a nice lunch we’re having’.

 

  • Name people, items at the supermarket and special features on different objects – for example, the velcro on shoes or buttons on a shirt.

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  • Talk about feelings and chat about whether your child is happy or sad. You can help out by giving him the words to describe his emotions. This can help him understand how others feel too.

 

  • Listen to your child. Follow her lead and talk about things she brings up. If she asks a question, give her the chance to come up with answers before you step in. For example, you can respond by saying, ‘What do you think that is?’, ‘What do you think it’s used for?’

 

  • Share stories with your child. You could share funny or interesting stories from your childhood or tell him about your family’s past. You could take turns creating a story together.

 

  • As your child gets older, teach her that words can be broken down into segments. For example, ‘man’ is made up of m-a-n. Also show how parts of spoken words can be blended to produce whole words. For example, r-u-n or r-un or ru-n makes ‘run’.

 

  • You can also play a game that gets your child thinking about the different sounds in words. For example, ‘Say the word butter. Say it again but don’t say “but” ’. Your child might say ‘er’ or ‘ter’. This helps your child understand that words are made up of sounds.

© 2011 Barbados Children Directory

 

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