Speech and Language Strategies for Home
Here are some easy ways to help develop your child’s language skills at home:
- Slow down when presenting new information or instructions
- Ask “WH” questions, like who, what, where, and why so to encourage kids to use more complex sentences.
- Support conversation by enthusiastic & active listening
- Provide examples when introducing new concepts or vocabulary
- Employ context clues – using surrounding words and information to derive meaning when a word is new or unknown
- Reduce distractions
- Use pictures and hand-held toys to support learning of new words or concepts
- Encourage kids to take turns during conversations and respond appropriately when others speak
- Provide real-life experiences to practice language skills (ex. Have child order their own meal in a restaurant)
- Establish a routine and repeat it, so kids know what to expect and how to respond
- Give advance notice for changes in activity or schedule, so that kids are prepared and fear/frustration is reduced.
- Start off with more basic sentences when kids are first learning to put words together
- Model- tell them exactly what you want them to say or the expected result. For ex. “Please can I be excused.”
- Use a more “excited” or emotion-packed voice to when there is feeling attached to specific words.
- Match your verbal interactions with your child with what they are able to comprehend.
- Check for understanding by asking the child explain or give a response.