Your child’s vocabulary is extremely important for good understanding, communication and learning, yet, often we’re so busy with our daily lives that we forget to include activities that encourage mastering new words. If you’re looking for ways to improve your child’s vocabulary that don’t take too much time out of your day, here are some ideas that will help.
We tend to limit our conversations to what our children can understand and what is relevant to them, but that doesn’t help them much to improve their vocabulary and understanding of the world. Instead, talk about your day, what you see around you, what your other half may be doing or anything else that comes to mind. Ask questions, too, and be interested in what your child has to say.
We only use a limited number of words in our daily conversations and that’s one of the reasons why reading is important – it gets your child exposed to words that he or she may not come across otherwise. Start reading with your baby as soon as possible and turn it into a daily habit.
3. Word games
You can start with games as simple as naming household objects and body parts, then progress to more complex games that require some knowledge of the alphabet. ‘I spy’ is one of the favourites in my family, because you can play it anywhere – at home, in the park or in the car.
Nursery rhymes are a great way to learn new words while keeping your child entertained. Songs are memorable and it’s another thing you can do whether you’re at home, at the playground or on your way to an appointment.
5. No baby talk
Baby talk can be very cute and it’s hard to resist talking to your child the same way they talk to you. There’s nothing wrong with using it from time to time, but avoid turning it into a habit. Talk to your child in complete sentences and encourage them to do the same. When your toddler points at something instead of saying the word, say it for them. They may not immediately repeat it after you, but will remember it.
Improving your child’s vocabulary doesn’t have to be time consuming, but it takes focus and consistency. Make it fun for yourself and your child, and it’ll be a lot easier to stick with your efforts.
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