18 - 48 Months+

This Powerful Activity Can Change Your Child’s Brain

  • Facebook Icon
  • Twitter Icon
  • Pinterest Icon
  • Email Icon

Back-and-forth conversations have a significant impact on language development and are important for social, emotional, and cognitive development.

MIT cognitive scientists found that back-and-forth conversations between an adult and a child appear to change the child’s brain. The number of conversational turns accounted for a large portion of the differences in brain physiology and language skills regardless of parental income or education. 

⁣⁣”Talk is powerful, but what’s even more powerful is engaging a child in meaningful interactions—the ‘give and take’ that is so important to the social, emotional and cognitive development of infants and toddlers,” says Dr. Jill Gilkerson, language research director at LENA Foundation and a study co-author.⁣⁣

“You can talk to a child until you’re blue in the face, but if you’re not engaging with the child and having a conversational duet about what the child is interested in, you’re not going to give the child the language processing skills that they need. If you can get the child to participate, not just listen, that will allow the child to have a better language outcome.” says Roberta Golinkoff, a professor of education at the University of Delaware School of Education. ⁣⁣

⁣⁣You can start having conversations with your little one as soon as you bring your sweet baby home. It will likely feel awkward in the beginning, but the best thing you can do is narrate what you are doing during wake times. Explain what you’re doing during different activities on the changing table, during feedings, or while cleaning up. You can also give your baby a house tour to engage them in the tasks of everyday life.

As your baby starts to make noises and faces, you can mimic the noises and the faces they make, and take turns. It’s definitely hard and a little awkward trying to talk to a young baby, but we have tips to help you get started. For toddlers, try to see what they’re looking at or understand what they’re trying to say, then expand on it! ⁣

⁣Allow time for them to respond. If they say, “baw” (“ball”), you can respond with, “Oh, look at the soccer ball that kid has! What are they doing with it?” Then wait for your little one to respond. ⁣⁣

Share

  • Facebook Icon
  • Twitter Icon
  • Pinterest Icon
  • Email Icon

Author

Team Lovevery Avatar

Team Lovevery

Visit site

Posted in: 18 - 48 Months+, Communication, Child Development

Keep reading