Helping Children Develop Early Language Skills

Strong language skills make up the foundation of a child’s learning. Encouraging the development of these skills at an early age will help your child to develop skills to understand emotions and social communication, learn about new ideas and develop early literacy. While this may seem like a daunting task, there are some simple strategies that you can implement every day to make the most of your communication with your child.

Talking

Talking with children of all ages is one of the easiest ways to help them develop their language skills, and it’s never too early to start.

Self-talk can be done with children from infancy and is a great way to model language in many different situations. Talk with your child as though they are already a talker by explaining what you are doing or describing the world around them using adult language.

You could talk through the steps of bath time, discuss the foods that they are eating at dinner or describe the things that you see while on a walk.

After each comment you make or question you ask, allow your child time to respond. Whether they attempt to communicate by pointing, babbling or using a short sentence, acknowledge this and respond the same way (e.g. point or babble back). Then you can repeat and expand their communication by adding words or using a more complex sentence.

If your baby reaches for a toy, you could respond by saying, “Would you like to play with the truck?” Or, if your child points at a dog walking by and said, “Dog!”, you could respond by saying “Yes, the big dog is going for a walk”.

Expanding sentences is a great way to expose children to new words and grammatical structures in the situations that we use them every day.

 

Reading

Reading books is another great way to introduce children to new words and situations that they may not experience day to day. You can make the most of your reading time by going beyond the words on the page.

Ask children questions about what’s happening in the pictures and try to relate what is happening in the book to things that they have experienced in real life. For example, you could ask questions such as “Do you remember what we saw when we went to the beach?” or “What do you think will happen next?”  This gives your child opportunities to practice talking about different topics and using abstract thinking.

You can also point to each word of the story as you read it to help your child recognise the relationship between written letters and the words and meaning that they convey. These early literacy skills form the basics of reading and writing once your child reaches school age.

Using these simple strategies, you can assist your child in developing their early language skills. If you have any concerns for feel that your child may not meeting their communication milestones, feel free to contact us at The Physiotherapy Centre to book a session with one of our Speech Pathologists

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Are Your Headaches a Pain in the Neck?

Did you know that 3 out of 5 people reading this article are likely to have a headache?
And there now seems to be a never-ending list of different pills and tablets available that supposedly get rid of these headaches. Well, here at The Physiotherapy Centre, we know that there is a better way to stop the problem and make the headaches stay away. 

Many headaches involve the nerves, blood vessels and muscles that cover a person’s head and neck. Sometimes the muscles or blood vessels swell or tighten placing pressure on the surrounding nerve tissue. This can result in pain developing in the neck and head and lead to other symptoms such as dizziness and nausea.


Physiotherapy can effectively manage these symptoms by addressing the muscles and joints of the neck, allowing for more appropriate posture and spinal alignment. 

So if you are struggling with re-occurring headaches – come in to The Physiotherapy Centre and see what our highly qualified Physiotherapists and Massage Therapist can do for you! 
To make an appointment please call our office at 4661 5577

Image by Jesper Aggergaard

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