Welcome to Happy Gucci Mother’s School. Here, you will learn a compulsory course for novice mothers jointly created by top experts in the field of childcare. You will master the methods to solve the baby’s nutrition, sleep, common diseases, early childhood education enlightenment and other childcare problems, and advance to qualified mothers.
Today we are going to learn the “Baby Language Enlightenment” course of Big J, the leader of growing family education.
Language enlightenment is very important for babies under 1 year old. They should be enlightened and guided according to the characteristics of TA’s language development at different stages.
Birth-3 months: passive reception period
Babies at this stage do not make much noise except crying. But babies will turn their heads in the direction of sound and passively receive verbal information by observing the interaction between their mothers and the people around them. As soon as D was born, I would talk and sing to her face and tell her what I did with her in declarative sentences, such as “Little D has dinner with her mother”.
Some babies emit vowels at the end of the third month, such as “a”, “o”. The first time Little D unconsciously made these meaningless sounds, I would imitate them, and then add a sentence. For example, she said “o”, and I would say, “o, that’s what you said.” Imitate her to give her positive encouragement, and then add a few words, in order to let her begin to understand the meaning of “conversation,” I said a word, mother will answer.
4-7 months: bah-bah-bah period
At this stage, babies begin to pay attention to the details of our speech, such as the pronunciation and intonation of each word. Babies begin to speak some consonants, such as “ba” and “ma”. At that time, I would use the consonants of small D to form a word and then say a sentence. For example, when she says “b-ei”, I point to the cup and say, “b-ei, B ei, this is a cup.” It’s meaningless for babies to teach words independently, not in context, but in relation to objects or actions.
In addition, at this stage, when we call the baby’s name, she starts to react and use different voices to convey her emotions. What I said changed from a declarative sentence to a hypothetical sentence. For example, I would ask, “What is Little D doing now?” pause for a moment to see if she responds, and then say, “Eat milk.” Encourage Little D to participate in the conversation with me instead of being passive as before. If Xiao D answers me in “Mars”, I will be particularly happy to encourage her, give positive feedback, and strengthen her enthusiasm to communicate with me.
8-12 months: “Mars” gossip
Babies at this stage should have more “Mars” or use some actions to express themselves. For example, point her finger at the place she’s going, wave goodbye, etc.
From this time on, parents should consciously use simple words to help children connect words with daily actions and daily necessities. For example, get up every day and say “get up!” and see the bottle and say “bottle”. Slowly, Little D sees the bottle and says “nao”, but instead of correcting her, I let her look at my mouth and slowly say, “bottle, do you want to say bottle right?” Strengthen the correct pronunciation instead of correcting the wrong pronunciation.
At the same time, avoid infant language such as “eating Nei nei”. And the same words should be said, not pointing at the cat today to say “cat and cat”, tomorrow to say “cat and cat”, the baby will be confused.
Language enlightenment becomes more critical when babies learn basic expressions.
A study conducted in the mid-1990s found that children from low-income families heard 30 million words less when they were four years old than those from high-income families, and the gap between the 30 million words later became apparent in their language development and learning performance. To this end, the United States has set up a special program called Operation 30 Million Words, in order to help all parents master the basic methods, the most effective early language enlightenment for children.
In the sample, middle and low-income families also read picture books and let their children watch videos and listen to children’s songs, but why is there such a big gap? After a thorough understanding of the plan, we found that the gap comes from whether we are “conscious”.
Actions of Thirty Millions put forward three T’s of language enlightenment: Tune In, Talk More, Take Turns. I would like to share with you how I implemented Little D in my daily life.
First of all, Tune In, which means channel alignment.
Most of our language enlightenment for children is based on ourselves, and when we think about it, we nag them, whether they are interested or not. If the child does not listen, he will complain, “Why don’t you listen to me?”
There is a huge difference between “listening” and “hearing”. Channel consistency is a prerequisite for children to accept what we say effectively. Only when a child is interested in what we say, can her receiver be turned on, can she really “hear” and language enlightenment be effective. Therefore, parents need to consciously adjust our bandwidth to match their children.
I share a small method of language enlightenment called “keyword bombing”. In the process of playing, I use simple sentences to express the baby’s ongoing activities. Each sentence repeats the same keyword continuously.
For example, when Little D is playing with a truck, I will say:
“Yes, this is a truck!
You are pushing a truck.
The truck is yellow.
Talking about what children are playing and what they are doing not only makes them more interested in accepting, but also helps them connect words effectively with their daily life.
Talk More, that is, a little more.
Tell Little D exactly what we are doing in descriptive language. For example, when I eat, I will say:
We have mushroom spaghetti today. The noodles are bow shaped.
The soup is very hot. Let’s blow and whir.
Wow, this noodle is delicious. I love noodles.
When we’re full, we wipe our mouths with paper towels.”
This is one of the simplest and most effective ways of enlightenment. Many parents will think that language enlightenment is to read picture books to their children at a specific time, while ignoring the opportunities that can be carried out every moment, so that the accumulated gap will be reflected.
Take Turn, which means taking turns.
After about 10 months of correcting Little D, I began to consciously encourage Little D to communicate with me. So every time I speak, I give her time to respond to her rhythm. The response may start as a gesture, an expression or some “bah-bah-bah”, but at least it shows that she understands that communication is two-way. One mistake I made before was not giving Little D enough time to respond. I think she didn’t respond, so I repeat it. As a matter of fact, every time we repeat it, the child has to spend extra time dealing with it. As a result, she responds more slowly and may even be confused. At the beginning, we must be patient and patient.
As the language of Little D becomes more and more abundant, our dialogue will be like this:
“What colour are you going to wear today, red or blue?
What else is red?
At this time, my questions are no longer confined to the “yes” answer, but to some open-ended questions, which can encourage open thinking while enlightening the language.
Nevertheless, in the process of language enlightenment, attention should be paid to avoid falling into misunderstandings, which are common:
(1) Just cramming input, no two-way communication
When it comes to language enlightenment, most parents know to repeat in language what they are doing with their babies every day from birth. But it is easy to overlook that communication should be two-way, not just cramming, but expecting the child to respond.
The ultimate goal of language enlightenment is communication, not that children can call people and say objects. Communication intention and thinking behind communication are the key. Many children over the age of two or three, know everything is not open, this may be because there is no opportunity to create children have the intention to communicate, the words are adults in the name of “language enlightenment” for the children to finish.
When we talk and sing to our children, the youngest newborns will respond to us, such as facial expressions and hand movements. We need to respond, “Ah, do you like it too? It’s also a favorite song of my mother.” Let the children have a strong intention to communicate, strengthen the willingness to communicate further.
(2) Use the Mom tone, intonation and vocabulary
In the end, how do we want our children to express themselves? From the very beginning, we need to communicate with them in this way and language. Communication is not only about speaking, but also about how to say it.
Reduce the use of reduplicated words such as “bottle” and “water”. Pay attention to the use of pronunciation and intonation, not only when speaking to children, but also when family members interact with each other. Some children like to scream when they are not satisfied. Do they think that their families have a high voice when they are in a hurry?
(3) Teaching language mechanically rather than using language
Many parents hold a card or a picture and constantly tell their children “car, car”, thinking that this is the language enlightenment. However, this effect is particularly bad, and soon the child’s “ear passage” to you is closed.
Only when children are interested in the things they are interested in, will the channels of reception be opened completely and the learning effect be the best. It is more meaningful to use the above mentioned “keyword bombardment” to densely mention in a short time that children are paying attention to what they are interested in.
But not bombing all the time, on the premise that we observe children expecting to communicate with us and want to interact with us.
(4) Always correct children’s speech errors
Children often make mistakes when they begin to speak, while adults instinctively correct them negatively, but instead of listening, children will feel frustrated and discourage their initiative in speaking and communicating.
When a child says something wrong, he does not correct it, but understands it. Due to the limitation of vocabulary and cognition, they are accustomed to using one word instead of one kind of thing. For example, “dog” means all small animals to Little D. Then, I would encourage her to express my interest in her expression, “Yes, you see an animal,” and then say the right thing, “This is a cat.” Through positive guidance, the child will “self-correct” and will not discourage the enthusiasm of speaking.
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