It takes two to tango
It takes two to tango
You might have heard of the famous saying – it takes two to tango. A child’s speech and language development depends a lot on how natural and exhaustive the interaction of the adult (communication partner) and the child is. The more the adult communicates with the child, the easier it is for ‘her’ to pick up speech and language.
I have seen, that many kids who present with a delay in speech & language skills have a history of ‘less talking’ parents who fail to realise the importance of a stimulatory environment in the child’s development. Mothers come and tell me that they didn’t know that they have to talk to their babies to get them speaking. Merely switching on the TV and letting your child enjoy bollywood songs or cartoons isn’t enough. You as a parent should make the child’s environment very stimulating and richer by new experiences everyday.
- Speak to your baby even though she is tiny and you think she wont understand you. You will be surprised how in no time your child will start responding to your simple questions,gestures and facial expressions.
- Be it the time to feed, bathe, sleep, or play, you can talk about the relevant details of all these routines. e.g. while bathing your child, talk about how hot/cold the water is, how slippery the soap is, how tiny the baby’s body is, how cosy the towel is.. so on..
- Play with your child. You can use colourful, squeaky toys and rattlers or music games to engage your little one. Click on the link below to find out more about the different toys for babies and toddlers.
- Give opportunities. Let your child assimilate what you speak and mean. Provide opportunities and chances for her to respond. She may start with just a smile initially, and soon babbling or word attempts will follow.
- Maintain Eye Contact. This is very essential. Even in my previous articles I have mentioned the importance of a good sustained eye contact while communicating/playing with your child.
It’s always a give and take relationship..and communication especially is a two way process. Adult child interaction is essential throughout the child’s development. Have a peep at the language pyramid beneath. Note that the skills of listening and attention are the basis of developing speech and language while issues of pronunciation and clarity follow much later.
Take home tip : If you want your child to speak nd communicate, you need to be an exceptional communication partner yourself. It always takes two to tango! – famous saying