If you want your child to speak more, get in the habit of talking to them.
1. Describe Everything. Explain where you are, where you are going, what you are doing. Describe colors, shapes and animals. Define and describe everything they see on a daily basis. This is basically what Michael and I do the majority of the day. He loves pointing at things and being told what they are. He has really started trying to say a lot more words lately or he works on pronouncing letters and I believe that has a lot to do with how much we describe all day long.
2. Ask Questions. Talk to your child but also prompt them to talk to you. After I have identified the same thing to Michael about 5 times, I ask him what it is. He can’t always tell me, but it makes him think. Then when he does know the word, he is able to respond.
3. Tell Stories. Get their imagination going by telling them a story about a person or an object. I’m not very good at thing one, I prefer reading but it’s a good thing to try because children lose their imagination far too quickly.
4. Be Positive. Talking to your children isn’t supposed to be full of giving orders and reprimanding them. Make talking to your children fun and positive.
5. Avoid Baby Talk. So many parents baby talk to their children. Don’t. Children understand a lot more at an early age then we give them credit for. Research even proves that children have a far better chance of learning a foreign language at a younger than adults do. So instead of baby talk, use the correct words, talk to them like you would an adult (obviously don’t use words that a far beyond their vocabulary). Use simple, but real language.
6. Gesture More. Research has also proved that non-verbal communication also impacts children’s understanding.
7. Stop and Listen. Don’t talk for your kids. They are perfectly capable of communicating for themselves if you give them a chance. Stop and listen to what they have to say. Don’t assume what your child wants or needs, ask them. Let them tell you a story.