West Finchley Preschool and Nursery

Promoting Children’s Language Development

Even from the third trimester of pregnancy, your baby is able to understand some elements of speech and has the ability to tune into different sounds, melodies, and inflections.

With this in mind, from the moment your little one is born, they already recognise sound. Here at Finchley Preschool, we actively promote children’s language development from a young age, by implementing strategies that we have gained through first hand insights, years of experience looking after children of all ages, and the many pieces of research we have engaged with.

After all, nursery can play a major role in children’s language development, due to the level of engagement and interaction they will encounter with their peers and mentors.

However, we find that a lot of parents are also keen to further enhance their child’s language development at home too, and they often come to us to ask for advice.

We’ve created a guide outlining everything that you need to know about promoting your child’s language development.

Firstly, it’s important that all parents recognise that children develop at very different stages, so don’t be alarmed if your child is not advancing as quickly as other children. With this in mind, it’s important that you have reasonable expectations of development milestones at each age.


Early stages of language development

Before your baby is even born, he/she is already tuning in to certain sounds of language, which is why from the moment your child is born, your little one will use sound to translate their emotions. For example, a baby will cry if they are hungry, tired or simply in need of a hug.

This is why early interactions with your little one during those early months is crucial when it comes to language development. And because babies listen to the sounds and engage with the mouth movements of their primary carers, you should take the time to make eye contact with your little ones, read them stories from as early as possible, sing to your baby and even allowing your little one to hear you talking to yourself can help with their language development.


Contingent Talk

This is recognised as one of the most effective ways of developing your little one’s language skills and half the time, parents don’t even realise that they are doing it. The theory suggest that by subconsciously tuning into what your children are interested in, and talking about it to them, can help to expand their language.


Development one to five years

These are crucial years when it comes to your child’s language development, and a lot can happy in such a short space of time…


At one years old

Your child will start to become familiar with some speech patterns and will be able to understand some common words. Looking at books together and repeating words back can really help their engagement and language.


At eighteen months

The vast majority of children become interested in domestic or pretend play, providing the perfect opportunity to help your little ones practice their language through creative play.


At two years old

By now your child’s vocabulary would have grown significantly and they will be able to understand more complex sentences and instructions.


At three years old

Your little ones will be starting to use pitch and varying the loudness of their voices, there vocabulary should also be good enough to engage in more complex conversations, such as how their day has been.

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