Is your toddler’s speech not getting any better? It could be because you’re not talking to him like a grown-up…
While you probably don’t want to speak to your toddler like he’s an adult (he’s really not ready to talk about the latest episode of Homeland), it might be time to quit the baby talk and instead move on to some more grown-up conversation.
Talking directly to your tot, as you would another adult (minus the swearing, obvs), is thought to improve his language skills hugely, Stanford psychologists have found. Chatting to your little one as you would a friend will help your toddler learn to process language more quickly, boosting his vocabulary range.
The researchers asked the parents of 29 tots aged 19 months to record their children at home. Each child was given a special shirt to wear containing a small audio recorder that captured all the sounds he heard during the day. These recordings were then analysed, looking at the amount of direct conversation the toddler had with his mum, rather than the speech he heard from his mum chatting on the phone or from the television.
Talking directly to your tot is thought to improve his language skills hugely
The results found that there was a huge difference in the amount of child-directed speech each toddler heard. One tot heard more than 12,000 words of child-directed speech, while another heard only 670 words during the entire day.
Follow-up tests showed that the kids who had experienced more direct conversation from their parents had much larger vocabularies at the age of two then the rest of the toddlers studied.
What are your tactics for improving your toddler’s speech? Let us know below.