Every parent looks forward to hearing that first word, first sentence, first conversation…and early repetition is key.
Research gives insight into the kind of parent-baby verbal interaction that can best spur on early language development, so that by the time the baby becomes a toddler, they actually have a larger vocabulary.
Your pediatric provider probably reminds you to “talk, talk, talk” at every check-up. Yes, talking is a great way to pump up language skills, but the secret is to “repeat, repeat, repeat.” And music can help.
Continue reading “Why Parents Repeating Themselves is Good for Babies”
Pediatricians will often recommend music classes for children with language delays. Speech therapists regularly incorporate music and rhymes in their therapy sessions with young children. Researchers have identified talking and singing with a small child as one of the most effective tools for closing the word gap with under-served populations.
Here are six music activities that support early language development – all six are favorites of our Kindermusik parents in class and at home:
Vocal Play – “Bah-bah-bah.” (pause)
Conversational back-and-forth play with parts of words, whole words, parts of songs, and short rhythms gives mouth muscles practice forming syllables and words.
Nursery Rhymes – “Hey diddle-diddle, the cat and the fiddle.“
Nursery Rhymes are not only rich with the sounds that vowels and consonants make, they are also catchy and repeatable.
Timbre – Scritch-scratch, tap-tap, jingle!
Hearing and labeling the very different and distinct sounds of instruments expands listening skills and enriches vocabulary.
Movement labels – Gallop, skip, twist, twirl!
Simultaneously moving and labeling the movements engages the brain with the body and grows a bigger vocabulary.
Steady beat – “ta – ta – ta – ta and stomp-stomp-stomp-stomp!”
Recent studies have found a close link between rhythmic skills and language skills. So the more you dance, march, and play-along with music, the stronger your music and language skills will be.
Instrument Exploration – “Can you say guiro? It goes ritch-ratch, ritch-ratch.”
Exploring and labeling instruments and their sounds in a relaxed, non-structured time of instrument exploration provides another perfect opportunity to practice and repeat sounds and words that we don’t always use every day.
So go ahead. Sing, chant, listen, label, move, and explore your way through your day with your child. You’ll be amazed at how a little bit of music and some musical activities here and there each day will enhance his or her language development!
Learn more about how Kindermusik can give you the inspiration you need for improving your child’s language development at www.Kindermusik.com or by clicking on the buttons to the right.
Kindermusik International is truly international, and one of the company’s latest initiatives has been to develop a music and movement curriculum called ABC English & Me that provides early language learning (ELL) for English as a foreign language.
As with all Kindermusik curricula, there is a strong emphasis on the classroom-to-home learning connection, now made more convenient, more accessible, and more powerful through the online learning activities available with the Kindermusik @Home Materials each family receives with their enrollment.
The delightful activity “Moo, Quack, Neigh!” (from the Moo, Quack, Neigh! unit) is a perfect example of how the language learning comes home, reinforcing the fun and learning from class and supporting parent involvement in early childhood education at home. “Moo, Quack, Neigh!” is just one of many activities for kids at home that makes learning a second language so much fun that the language learning comes easily and naturally.
Take a free peek at “Moo, Quack, Neigh!” for yourself and see if you don’t agree!
Learn more about the positive impact of music and movement activities on young children’s acquisition of English and how our ESL curriculum, ABC English & Me, puts it into practice.