September 2007 - Communicating With Your Child

Main Content

Family Resources: September 2007

One of the of the aims of the TRIS project is to raise awareness of rare trisomy conditions and the variety of situations and concerns families encounter. This page is intended to share resources that families can use in their daily lives.

We are archiving previous months' Family Resources pages

Communicating With Your Child

Positive interactions with children are a very important part of their communication development. It helps increase their speech and language development in addition it also forms strong bonds between parents and children. Sometimes finding ways to communicate with young children or children with limited communication abilities can be difficult. Below you will find some suggestions for increasing communication with your children. In addition you will find included a few web resources with further ideas for increasing communication. You can expose your child to a large number and variety of words by making talking a part of everything you and your child do together. To a young child, the whole world is new and even the most routine activities are learning experiences. Try the suggestion below, and you will soon learn to recognize the hundreds of opportunities that each day offers to introduce your child to language.

Questions, answers and comments: Trips to therapy, preschool, the supermarket, post office, etc. should always be accompanied by lots of questions, answers, and comments.

Doing, seeing, feeling, and touching: Talk to your child about what you're doing, seeing, feeling, and touching while you cook dinner, vacuum the carpet, set the table, or simply pour your child a drink. As you name and describe different objects, you can increase your child's knowledge of their different characteristics; for example, you can talk about colors and textures.

Use specific words: Making only slight changes in the way you speak to your child can make a large difference in his vocabulary development. Instead of saying, "I will cut the sandwich for you," try saying, "I will cut the sandwich in half for you." Instead of "We will be there soon," try saying, "We will be there in two hours. Hearing language is the most important part whether your child is turning his head to your voice, learning new vocabulary words or speaking in full sentences.

Here are additional ideas on finding language opportunities in your child’s daily routines and activities.

For age and developmentally specific activities to encourage speech and language, you can visit the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

Another important aspect to speech and language development is making sure your child has a variety of literacy opportunities. Reading and singing to your child are great ways to provide literacy opportunities and encourage development in their communication skills. A great place to begin building positive literacy skills is at your public library. Search for a public library near you.