Creating a Language-Rich Environment at Home

Written by Katrina Haddon

Certified Practicing Speech Pathologist
B.Sc, B.Sp.Path, C.P.S.P

Giving your child a strong foundation in language starts at home.

One of the most important foundations we can provide is a rich language environment.

This means giving your child lots of natural ways to hear and respond to language at home, which will support their language development.

Here are some fun and practical tips to help you create a language-rich home that will support your child’s speech and language development.

Talk, Talk, Talk!

  • Narrate Your Day: Describe what you’re doing as you go about your daily routines. For example, while cooking you could say, “I’m chopping carrots.”
  • Parallel Talk: Talk about what your child is doing. If they’re playing with cars, you might say, “Go, racecar!” or “You’re driving the yellow car.”
  • Verbal Routines: Use consistent phrases for daily activities, like saying “Goodnight, sleep tight” before bed. This helps children learn language through repetition.

Engage and Respond

  • Sit Face to Face: When talking or playing with your child, sit at their level. This encourages interaction and connection, which are important for communication development.
  • Be an Active Listener: Show your child you’re listening by nodding, smiling, and waiting to hear what they say. This encourages them to keep talking.

Read Together

  • Make Reading a Routine: If you can, set aside time each day to read with your child. You could find books at the library to read books about a range of topics.
  • Don’t just read: While reading, you don’t need to just read the words off the page. You can also talk about what is happening in the story or pictures! You could say “look at the nice flowers!” or pause to ask questions like, “What do you think will happen next?”

Make it fun!

  • Sing Songs and Nursery Rhymes: Songs and rhymes help support interaction between you and your child. They are a great chance to introduce new words and engage in a fun activity together!
  • Follow your Child’s Lead: Pay attention to what interests your child, then join in by playing with them or talking about their interests. You could join their game or play the same game alongside them to connect with them.

Every child develops at their own pace, but by creating a language-rich environment, you’re providing them with the tools they need to grow.

By talking, reading, singing, or engaging with your child in everyday activities, you’re giving them plenty of opportunities for language development.

Our speech pathologists work with parents every day to support their children’s language development.

If you would like support for your child’s communication, you can contact Box Hill Speech Pathology on (03)-9899-5494 to book a consultation.

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