Why Vocabulary is Important and How to Build It

Why is lexicon important? Research has indicated that children with larger vocabularies have higher school achievement in general (Smith, 1941, cited in Beck, McKeown, and Kucan, 2002) and higher reading achievement in particular (Anderson and Freebody,1981; Graves, 1986; Stahl, 1998). Additionally, people with larger vocabularies have been shown to have higher IQs (Bell, Lassiter, Matthews, and Hutchinson, 2001; Hodapp, and Gerken, 1999)! The amount of different words a child uses is important because it determines how, and how effectively, a child communicates. If your child only uses a few true words, then they are likely using gestures (pointing or reaching) to chiefly communicate. In regards to an older child, they may become frustrated if they are not able to communicate a message in the way that they prefer. By increasing a child’s vernacular, you are enabling them to communicate more effectively.

Did you notice how many different words you can use to talk about vocabulary? The same is true for just about anything you can dream up to yak, converse, or chat about!

Read below for tips on how to build and broaden your child’s vocabulary:

For younger children

  • Label: When playing or interacting with objects during the day, provide a label for your child. If they reach forhow to build your child's vocabulary an object, give them a word for it! “Milk. Oh, you want milk?!”
  • Vary the input: Rather than saying “ball” every time, add in an adjective with it. Say “my ball”, “blue ball”, or “Daddy’s ball” to encourage a growth of vocabulary.
  • Puzzles and books: Puzzles and books are great tools for learning new words, especially for vocabulary that your child does not come in contact with every day. Do you remember how you learned about exotic animals? Unless you grew up outside of the US, I’ll bet it was through pictures and books!

For older children

  • Describe: Practice learning words by describing items. How does it feel? What does it look like? What does it do? By answering these questions, your child will learn new words and new ways to talk about things.
  • Label: Provide the word for new and unfamiliar objects. Discuss what it’s used for, where you might find it, and who might use it. Tell your child a sentence that uses the word appropriately and/or gives your child more information about it. Then see if they can expand it, and make a sentence of their own.
  • Encourage reading: Nothing builds a child’s vocabulary like increased exposure! Being exposed to words during reading not only introduces new words but also gives contexts and clues for the child to decipher the word meaning on their own.

Have a little one? Here are 5 ways to build your baby’s language throughout the day.


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NSPT offers services in BucktownEvanstonHighland ParkLincolnwoodGlenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today!

References: Duke, Nell K., & Moses, Annie M. (Date of publication). 10 Research-tested ways to build children’s vocabulary. Retreived from http://teacher.scholastic.com/products/readingline/pdfs/ProfessionalPaper.pdf

 

Understanding Sensory Processing Disorder: Vestibular System

The vestibular system might not be one of the five basic senses we were taught as children, but it is arguably the most fundamental sense. It is the first sensation a fetus experiences prior to birth and as our other senses develop, they in many ways depend on the vestibular system to integrate properly. Along with the cochlea of the auditory system, it comprises the labyrinth of the inner ear. Movement of the fluids in these semicircular canals inform us of changes in our head position, gravitational pull, and direction and speed of movement. The vestibular system signals to our other senses when it’s necessary to make adjustments so that we can maintain balance, clear vision, adequate muscle tone, and coordination.

Difficulties with vestibular processing can make many aspects of everyday life challenging. These children may appear lazy, hyperactive, clumsy, inattentive, impulsive, or anxious. Dysfunction can present as hypo or hyper responsive and, much like the other sensory systems, a child may exhibit behaviors of both.

Signs of difficulty with vestibular processing include:

  • Dislike/fear or craving/seeking out activities requiring feet to leave the ground such as swings, slides, riding aSensory Processing Disorder the vestibular system bike, jumping or climbing.
  • Clumsiness or frequent falling
  • Often moving slowly/cautiously
  • Frequent motion sickness/dizziness
  • Appearing to never become dizzy with excessive spinning
  • Seemingly unaware of danger/risks or impulsively jumping, running, and/or climbing
  • Appearing frequently “lost” in their environment or having difficulty locating objects
  • Dislike of being moved to stomach or back as a baby or having their head tilted back
  • Rocking, spinning, twirling, or frequent head tilting. May also intently watch moving objects
  • Often prefers sedentary activities
  • Difficulty sitting still or unable to sustain attention without moving
  • Difficulty with reading, writing, and/or math
  • Often slouches, holds head up with hands, or prefers lying down

If you notice these red flags in your child, it is important to provide as many child-directed movement opportunities as possible. Be careful not to swing or spin your child excessively, as this can cause adverse reactions such as nausea or changes in breathing and heart rate. Consultation with an occupational therapist can help you identify activities that incorporate additional sensory systems while keeping in mind your child’s current level of security.

Below are just a few suggestions for important movement experiences to incorporate throughout your child’s weekly schedule:

  • Somersaults and cartwheels
  • Log rolling
  • Jumping rope
  • Bike riding
  • Swimming
  • Gymnastics
  • Lying on the stomach to complete activities
  • Climbing across or hanging upside down from monkey bars

More on the Subtypes of SPD:

  1. Sensory Processing Disorder: The Subtypes
  2. Understanding Sensory Processing Disorder: The Tactile System
  3. Understanding Sensory Processing Disorder: The Auditory System

NSPT offers services in BucktownEvanstonHighland ParkLincolnwoodGlenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today!

signs a child may need PT at school

Signs at School a Child May Need Physical Therapy

Teachers can be wonderful allies to the healthcare field. They spend up to 8 hours a day observing and helping children. Often times, they are the first to notice concerning signs, and when given the right tools, can direct parents where to go to get their children the help they need. Here a few signs teachers can look out for that would warrant a physical therapy screen.

5 Signs at School a Child May Need Physical Therapy:

  1. Unable to keep up with peers during recess or P.E – This may present as a child whosigns a child may need PT at school doesn’t follow friends onto the jungle gym or pulls themselves out of games of tag. A child would benefit from a physical therapy screen if they are unable to perform a jumping jack or skip forward.
  2. “W”-sits or props onto arm when sitting criss-cross – A child who sits in a “w” position or props onto their arm when sitting on the floor may present with weak core muscles. Weak core muscles result in a poor foundation for other fine motor skills, and may present in sloppy or slow handwriting, poor cutting skills, or decreased independence in self care tasks.
  3. Places both feet onto step when going up and down stairs – A child should be able to go up and down a set of stairs, without holding onto a handrail, by the age of 4. A child who presents difficulty, or immature form, during a stair task, may have lower extremity weakness, impaired balance, or developmental coordination disorder.
  4. Toe-Walking Toe-walking or early heel rise during gait (which may looking like bouncing while walking) can arise from a multitude of impairments including muscle tightness, core weakness, impaired balance, etc. Prolonged toe-walking may also result in any of the above, excessive falls, or muscle contractures.
  5. Poor sitting posture at desk – Poor posture may be a sign of decreased endurance of trunk muscles. Trunk weakness may also result in a poor foundation for fine motor skills, resulting in poor handwriting, decreased grasping ability, or decreased independence in self care tasks.

Click here to view our gross motor milestones infographic!

NSPT offers services in BucktownEvanstonHighland ParkLincolnwoodGlenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today!

spring break

Spring Break: Tips for the “Staycationing” Family

,Spring break is here. You decided to take the week off work and have a “Staycation” with your family. Now what? Use this time to enjoy with your family…but don’t derail a schedule and development the school year brings.

Spring Break Staycation Do’s:Spring Break

  • Do start the day off writing a schedule of “Fun” things to do with your child.
  • Do give each child a chance to pick something they want to add to the schedule so they each feel like they have a say in the day and are excited for their choice!
  • Do play a board game.
  • Do go outside and ride bikes, go for a walk, go to the park, etc.
  • Do bake some cookies that the kids can decorate!
  • Do an arts and crafts project using things around the house.
  • Do have a dance party or play Dance Revolution on your Wii.
  • Do for children ages 3-10, make a book: staple paper together and have your child dictate the story to you (or write it themselves depending on age). Then let them illustrate it!
  • Do make a picnic instead of your typical lunch. Set up a blanket in the yard and enjoy!
  • Do write a social story so kids know what to expect during this off time
  • Do use a visual schedule each day during break
  • Do keep your child on a proper sleep schedule or your tired child will not make vacation fun
  • Do use these days to have quality time with your children!

Spring Break Staycation Don’ts:

  • Don’t plop yourself or your kids in front of the TV all day.
  • Don’t allow any nagging! Only smiles and fun suggestions!
  • Don’t try to work on your day off.
  • Don’t waste the day eating junk food and supplying it to your children.

NSPT offers services in BucktownEvanstonHighland ParkLincolnwoodGlenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today!

 

language development throughout the day

5 Easy Ways to Encourage Your Baby’s Language Throughout the Day

Language is used everywhere around us, in multiple ways and in all facets of life. How does your little one learn language when she is so bright-eyed and bushy-tailed? When you think about talking to your baby, it may seem a bit silly since she isn’t talking back. However, she is communicating with you in other ways, such as with eye gaze, coos, and smiles. Interacting and speaking to your baby throughout the day is thought to facilitate language acquisition. It has been found that the amount of words addressed to 1- to- 2-year olds by their mothers is predictive of their vocabulary growth rate (Huttenlocher, Haight, Bryk, Seltzer, & Lyons, 1991).

Here are 5 easy ways to encourage your baby’s language development throughout the day:

  1. Use infant-directed speech: Also known as motherese, this is speech that is directed specifically at your baby5 easy ways to encourage your babies language throughout the day in a prosodic and deliberate manner. Research has shown that babies actually prefer motherese to its counterpart, adult-directed speech.
  1. Read books: Interacting and exposing your baby to books and the act of reading is a great way to encourage language. At this age, picture books are ideal and facilitate early learning of concepts such as colors, numbers, and animals. It also helps teach book orientation and direction of reading.
  1. Label: Give your child the names for common objects and objects that they are consistently exposed to. This input increases receptive language which will in turn increase expressive language. Thanks to fast-mapping (the ability to learn words with minimal exposure), typically-developing toddlers require minimal exposure to new words in order to learn their meaning and use them appropriately.
  1. Sing songs: Singing songs to your child such as ‘Rock a Bye Baby’ and ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’ not only provides comfort but also includes exposure to repetitive language models.
  1. Use simple language: When speaking to your baby, use simple language by communicating in words and/or short phrases. This limits the amount of language that the child has to process and allows them to focus on the important parts of the message.

Before you know it (and before you may be ready for it), your baby will be talking, walking, and going to school. Facilitate their language learning by utilizing the tips mentioned above. If you become concerned (lack of interest, eye contact, gestures, and/or speech sounds, among others) with your baby’s language and speech skills, seek an evaluation with a certified speech and language pathologist.


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Click here to view our speech and language milestone infographic!

NSPT offers services in BucktownEvanstonHighland ParkLincolnwoodGlenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today!

Reference: Huttenlocher, J., Haight, W., Bryk, A., Seltzer, M., & Lyons, T. (1991). Early vocabulary growth: Relation to language input and gender. Developmental Psychology, 27, 236-248.

interpreting neuropsychological testing

A Guide To Understanding Neuropsychological Test Results

When a child comes in for a neuropsychological evaluation, it can provide an opportunity to gain a larger picture of how he learns and if support is needed in and outside of the classroom. The results from the evaluation can then help parents and teachers alike to better support the child’s learning. After a day of testing, there are a lot of numbers and verbiage that may seem overwhelming and difficult to understand… what does it all mean?! Here is a guide to understanding these sometimes complex neuropsychological test results.

Most psychological tests are reported with standard scores and percentiles. This number is representative of how the child scored in comparison to a representative sample of same-age peers. This group is the “norm” group.

Standard Scores

Standard Score: Based on scale with the average score of 100.interpreting neuropsychological tests

“Typical” limits of functioning:

  • Above Average: 110-119
  • Average is considered: 90-109
  • Low Average: 80-89

68% of the general population will perform within these limits

There are generally many small tests (subtests) that make up a larger area of functioning like Working Memory (aka short-term memory), for example. When the scores of all the subtests are combined you get a composite score, which is reported as a Standard Score. These composite scores tend to be a little more reliable than the individual scores on their own…

Why may you ask?  Attention, fine motor skills, alertness, distractibility, anxiety, etc.  can all play a role in a child’s performance.

All of these observations are taken into account when interpreting the child’s results.

 Percentiles

Percentiles: These often go hand in hand with the standard scores. If a child earned a standard score of 100, then they performed at the 50th percentile. If you took stats, this may ring a bell, if not, here’s another way to think about it..

-“Danny did as well or better than 50% of the his same-age peers”

Typical areas looked at during an evaluation:

Your child’s cognitive functioning =

  • Memory
  • Verbal Comprehension
  • Fluid Reasoning: ability to think logically & problem solve in new situations
  • Visual Spatial skills: ability to visualize things in your head
  • Processing Speed: how quickly a child can perform on an “easy” or over-learned activity

Your child’s academic functioning =

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Math

If the child has attention, language, social or emotional concerns, different types of tests are administered to supplement the evaluation and is tailored to the parents’ concerns and child’s needs.


Neuropsychology testing IL
NSPT offers services in BucktownEvanstonHighland ParkLincolnwoodGlenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today!

age appropriate requesting

I Want It Now! A Guide to Age-Appropriate Requesting

As children learn and grow, what counts as “appropriate” requesting also changes. Parents may notice that what once was acceptable (like grunting and pointing) is no longer as children’s language expands. See below for an overview of appropriate requesting for each age range. It should be noted however, that each age group represents a range of skills and some children may develop faster or slower than others.

 A Month-By-Month Guide to Age-Appropriate Requesting:

  • Birth-9 Months: These babies will express their wants and needs through vocalizing, shouting,age appropriate requesting and crying. Oftentimes, parents report that they can tell the meaning behind different cries however, unfamiliar adults may have difficulty. Babies may be requesting a diaper change, milk, or to be picked up/rocked.
  • 9-12 Months: Requesting in this age range becomes slightly more volitional than for the younger babies. These babies will continue to vocalize to make wants and needs known, but they may also reach for desired objects (e.g., toy, rattle, spoon), and may imitate sounds to indicate a continuance of play (e.g., “buh” when caregiver says “ball.”)
  • 12-18 Months: Once toddlers begin to speak in single words (whether prompted or independently), requesting becomes more mature. Toddlers may use words (e.g., “more,” “help,” or naming desired object) to indicate their needs. Children in this age range are often more likely to point to preferred items (e.g., ball or bubbles), and will tend to pull caregivers toward desired objects (e.g., bookshelf, puzzles, or anything out of reach).
  • 18-24 Months: Children in this age range will often use one or two words when requesting. These requests again become more mature, as children will name objects during play to indicate their preferences (e.g., “ball,”). They may also shake their heads to express “no.”
  • 24-30 Months: Two year olds will begin to express desires with two or three words, often using early pronouns (e.g., “I want ball”). They may request to ask for help, (e.g., “open juice”), and may respond to questions from caregivers (e.g., “do you want more milk?” answer: “more milk”).
  • 30-36 Months: Three year olds will begin to express “yes” and “no” verbally, when asked questions regarding their wants and needs. Expressive requesting will become more mature, and children will often use four words to express their preferences. Telling parents or teachers, “I want milk please,” these children are more independent than previously.
  • 36 Months+: Requesting for preschool-aged children again becomes more complex. Once mastering four word requesting, these children may express, “can I have the ____.” Often this will require prompting for parents or caregivers, and children may benefit from adult models for appropriate sentence construction.

Click here to read 5 things you didn’t know about how your child learns language


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NSPT offers services in BucktownEvanstonHighland ParkLincolnwoodGlenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today!

Reference: Rossetti, L. (2006). The Rossetti Infant-Toddler Language Scale. Linguisystems, Inc.

The Best Baby Carriers of 2015: A Physical Therapist’s Take on the Debate

Purchasing a baby carrier for your child can be a daunting process. Parents have to take into account a myriad of factors including: safety, price, reviews, materials used. As a physical therapist, I am able to provide a unique perspective to the debate.  So I took a look “Best Lists” at parents.com and thebump.com to determine best baby carriers on the market today. Here’s the complied list, ranked based on safety for the child throughout the use of the carrier, ergonomics for the parents, and length of use (without purchasing additional accessories).

The Best Baby Carriers of 2015:

  1. Boba 4G Baby CarrierThis carrier provides great hip positioning for the child from birth to toddler. Thethe best baby carriers of 2015 optional foot strap to ensure hip flexion and external rotation is what sets this carrier apart from the others. It allows for both front and back child carrying. This carrier also provides great ergonomic support for caregiver in the form of both a waist belt and padded shoulder straps to equally distribute the load.
  2. Baby Bjorn Carrier OneThis carrier also provides great hip positioning from birth to toddler. It allows for both front and back child carrying, as well as provides great ergonomic support for the parent. The head support allows for easy adjustments to support the child’s neck from newborn to toddler. This carrier has the added feature of using fabrics that are safe for the child place in their mouth, earning it the number 2 spot on this list.
  3. Becco GeminiThis carrier allows for great hip positioning in 3 different carrying positions: front carrying, back carrying, and over the hip carrying. This carrier also provides easily adjustable head support and caregiver ergonomics.
  4. Tuba Baby Carrier – This carrier requires separately purchased infant insert for use with newborns. However, this insert does provide adequate support for good hip alignment. Can be worn on the back or the front, and provides good ergonomic support for the parent.
  5. Boba Air Baby CarrierLightweight alternative to other carriers on this list, but this translates to less ergonomic support for the parent. Designed to be worn on back or front, and promotes hip external rotation and flexion of the child.
  6. Britax Baby Carrier This carrier requires a separate infacing insert. With infacing insert, child maintain good alignment and is given good support. However, when child is placed in intended out-facing position, excessive pressure is placed on the pelvis and with hips in minimal flexion.
  7. Ergo Baby Original This carrier requires a separate infant insert, which must be purchased separately. This insert, does not provide the hips to be placed in hip flexion and external rotation (the recommended infant position to limit the development of hip dysplasia – See Judy Wang’s blog on the topic). It should be noted that the insert has a built in “seat” for the child to promote optimal position, the nature of the insert does not ensure it.
  8. Moby WrapWraps were not assessed in this blog.
  9. Maya WrapSee Above.

Have more questions about baby carriers? Our pediatric physical therapists have the answers.

NSPT offers services in BucktownEvanstonHighland ParkLincolnwoodGlenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today! 

sensory activities for home

Sensory Activities in the Home

See, smell, touch, hear, taste and move. 80% of your brain is used in the processing, translation and use of sensorysensory activities for home information while your entire childhood is a process of learning, development and play! From early ages we learn what we should touch and what would burn us; we learn what sounds make us fall asleep and what sounds make us cry; we
also learn what foods we crave and which ones we say “yuck!” toward. All these sensational experiences help to shape our brains and help us engage in everyday activities, including play!

Without realizing it, the play scenarios you create with your child provide learning opportunities through every sensation. Though it may look like a child at play is only playing, he is in fact learning HOW to learn by engaging his sensory receptors to provide his body feedback. Of course, sensory play and sensory learning can be incorporated into your every day.

Here are sensory play activities you can engage in with the materials you have at home:

 

SENSATION INPUT TO YOUR BODY ACTIVITIES TO TRY AT HOME
Vestibular (movement balance) The three-dimensional sensation that places your body “here”, allowing you to understand where your body is in relation to the ground Crab walks

  • Somersault tumbles
  • Inversion yoga poses (downward dog, headstands, handstands)
  • Cartwheels
  • Spinning in circles (either assisted or independently)
  • Playground swings
  • Going down slides in different positions (on butt, on stomach feet first, on stomach head first, on back)
Proprioceptive (body position) This is your body awareness system, knowing where your body parts are in relation to one another.
  • Simon says for body movement
  • Animal walks (crab walk, bear walk, penguin walk)
  • Burrito rolls inside a blanket
  • Riding a bike
  • Dancing free style or the hokey-pokey
  • Bunny jumping

 

Tactile (touch) Through touch you get sensations about pain, temperature, texture, size, pressure and shape.
  • Play-doh
  • Shaving cream play
  • Sand boxes
  • Finding toys in rice or dry beans
  • Slime
  • Finger paint
  • Balloon volleyball
  • Secret message back writing
Visual (seeing) Your sight provides you with information about color, size, shape, movement and distance.
  • Bubbles
  • Eye-spy
  • Floating balloon
  • Mazes
  • Interactive iPad games (I love fireworks, pocket pond, glow free)
  • Play a game of “how far is that” (will need a measuring tape to confirm)
Gustatory (taste) A “chemical” sense that gives you information about the objects (edible or not) that you place into your mouth.
  • Guess that taste!
  • Play restaurant
  • Explore different tastes: sour, sweet, bitter,
  • Allow oral motor exploration during tummy time
  • Explore different textures: crunchy, smooth like yogurt, thick liquids like apple sauce, thick solid food like meat
Olfactory (smell) Another “chemical” sense that registers and categorizes smells in the environment.
  • Smell candles
  • Guess that food!
  • Scented markers
  • Make cookies
  • Label different fruits by smell
Auditory (hearing) Allows you to locate, capture and discriminate sounds in your environment.
  • Sing and dance
  • Guess that sound!
  • Directions based games (Simon says, Hokey Pokey, Bop-it, Hullaballoo)
  • Guess that animal sound!
  • Listen to different types of music
  • Hide a sound making device in the room and have your child locate it.



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NSPT offers services in BucktownEvanstonHighland ParkLincolnwoodGlenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today!

5 things you didn't know about how your baby learns language

5 Things You Didn’t Know About How Your Baby Learns Language

Has your child ever surprised you with his knowledge and actions, or used a word that you thought he had never heard before? Have you ever thought, ‘My child is a genius’? If so, I have to agree that children and the way that they develop language skills is quite impressive!

Here are 5 things you didn’t know about how your baby learnslanguage development language:

  1. Babies cannot learn language from iPads and TV. Although there are many apps available that target language skills, they do not replace human interaction. Patricia Kuhl and her research team concluded that language learning takes place in a social context (interaction with a person!) (Roehrich, 2013). Their research has shown that American babies exposed to non-native sounds (sounds not in their primary language) in a face-to-face context were able to learn to distinguish these sounds from their native sounds. However, when presented with the non-native sounds via audiovisual and audio recordings only, they were not able to distinguish between the two.
  2. Motherese works. Motherese (also known as baby talk or infant directed speech) is spoken by mothers around the world. Is there a purpose to this talk? The answer is yes! Motherese helps babies to learn the sounds, patterns, and intonation of their language. The prosody of motherese is thought to facilitate processing in domains such as word segmentation (Thiessen, Hill, & Saffran, 2005) and word learning (Graf-Estes, 2008).
  3. Babies start learning language in the womb. Believe it or not, the number of neurons (nerve cells) in our brains peaks before we are even born!  Babies have a critical period for learning sounds in their native language, and this critical period occurs before your child turns 1 year old. This period begins when your baby first develops the ability to hear (around 16 weeks after conception). Before this critical period, babies are able to discriminate between any sounds in any language. At approximately the age of 8-10 months, babies are pruning connections in their brain and fine-tuning the connections that are used most frequently. This is why, after the critical period, your baby no longer has the ability to discriminate sounds in native and non-native languages. When your baby is 6 months old, they have an ability that you as an adult do not have! (Roehrich, 2013)
  4. Babies communicate via eye gaze. Have you ever wondered how your baby communicates without using words (or cries?) The answer is eye gaze! Eye gaze is one of the first ways that a baby and their mother connect socially. Babies show preference for items and people by demonstrating longer eye gaze towards a person or object. When they are a little older, babies also use joint attention and gestures to communicate. This is demonstrated by the baby looking at a preferred object, then making eye contact with their communication partner, and then back to the preferred object again, attempting to draw the adult’s attention to their preferred object.
  5. Toddlers fast-map. During the second year of life, toddlers learn and retain new words after minimal exposure to the word and its use. This enables them to expand their receptive and expressive vocabularies at a rapid rate.

Watch this TED Talk that provides additional information about how babies learn language. If you are concerned with your child’s language skills, consult a speech and language pathologist!

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NSPT offers services in BucktownEvanstonHighland ParkLincolnwoodGlenview and Des Plaines. If you have questions or concerns about your child, we would love to help! Give us a call at (877) 486-4140 and speak to one of our Family Child Advocates today!  

References: