Musical activities are linked with improvement in children’s communication skills.
Songs and musical activities have been shown to increase children’s vocabulary.
Children with stronger musical skills are more likely to have greater phonological awareness skills.
Song and infant-directed speech facilitate word learning.
Even before language emerges, responding to children’s vocalizations or actions soon after they are produced builds a communication foundation that lays the groundwork for language.
When an infant or young child babbles, gestures, or cries, and an adult responds with eye contact, words, or a hug, connections are made and strengthened in the child’s brain that support the development of communication and social skills. The back and forth interaction is critical. It’s called “serve and return”.
Children who experience more conversational turns show greater activation in left inferior frontal regions (Broca’s area) during language processing, which explained nearly half the relationship between children’s language exposure and verbal abilities.
The researchers found that the number of conversational turns correlated strongly with the children’s scores on standardized tests of language skill, including vocabulary, grammar, and verbal reasoning.
The quality of the interactions between parents and their children, measured with gesture and speech, is associated with advanced language development
The more words that adults speak to children, the better language skills children develop.
One encounter with a new word is not enough to support word learning. Children often need to hear words many times before learning them.
Repeated and varied exposure to unfamiliar words, along with the meaningful contexts, helps children learn new words.
Language directed to a child, as opposed to language overheard by a child, predicts to later vocabulary.
High quality early language experiences are characterized by adults and children engaging in “conversational duets”.
Children whose parents talk about what the child is focused on have more advanced vocabularies than children whose parents try to redirect children’s attention.
Gesturing toward or looking at an object while saying the objects name helps children learn the name of the object.
When an adult and child are engaged in joint attention, or focused together on one object, and the adults says the name of the object, children are more likely to learn the word for that object.
When an adult labels or comments on an object upon which a child is focused, the child is more likely to develop a larger vocabulary.
The more gestures toddlers know and use, the more vocabulary they know as preschoolers.
Following a child’s gaze has been shown to be a particularly powerful cue that promotes word learning in toddlers.
The more children use an object to represent another object the stronger their language skills are.
Dramatic play activities are often when the most complex language interactions occur between teachers and children.
Guided play advances cognitive skills like language.