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Supporting and reinforcing your child's language growth
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Supporting and reinforcing your child's language growth


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Learn how you can help your child grow his vocabulary through reading.

Learn how you can help your child grow his vocabulary through reading.

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  • 2. Originally presented at: October 30, 2011Center for Hearing and Communication ● 50 Broadway, New York, NY 10004 ● (917) 305-7850 ●
  • 3. A Language Model Language  Semantics- vocabulary  Dog  Receptive- understanding  Expressive-what is stated  Syntax- grammar  The dog is running  Pragmatics- use of language  Requesting  I want a dog  Commenting  I see a dog  Questioning  Where is the dog?  Asking for clarification  Did you say “dog”  Turn-taking
  • 4. How a child’s vocabulary develops A brain of a growing child is always forging links  Sounds  Images  Emotions  Experiences  Tastes Smells An infant’s mental development proceeds by linking new information to old information
  • 5. Semantics How do words “grow”?  Vertically– word upon word upon word  Apple  Banana  Grape  Pear  Horizontally  Apple– red (green, yellow), round, shiny, grows on a tree, has skin, seeds, stem, fruit, crunchy, apple juice, apple sauce  The big apple, apple of my eye, sleeping beauty’s poison apple, apple cheeks
  • 6. Semantics Best ways to learn vocabulary  Listening to others  In context  In variety of contexts  Direct teaching  Incidental language  Being read to  Reading yourself
  • 7. Semantics We build vocabulary, vertically and horizontally, receptively and expressively through:  Categories  Descriptions  Multiple meanings  Synonyms  Antonyms
  • 8. Semantics When we build these “file folders” well, the child can store and later retrieve new words and concepts.
  • 9. Semantics Vocabulary learning is based on listening Hearing Listening Sounds-words-sentences - paragraphs
  • 10. What is different for children who aredeaf or hard of hearing? Amplification or implants for hearing Therapy for developing listening  Detection  Discrimination  Identification  Comprehension
  • 11. Why read to your child  Best way to learn to listen, grow vocabulary, and create a space for interaction.  Words, ideas and images in books can take children to places outside of their immediate experience.  Increase imagination  Expand perspective
  • 12. Why read to your child It will take years for your child to learn through reading a book to themselves. Reading to your child can begin at birth.
  • 13. Why are you reading the book Therapy? Pleasure? How should we sit? On the lap? Across from each other? Should she see the pictures first?
  • 14. Picking a book Is the book funny? Does it have interesting vocabulary words Does it have rhythm and rhyme? Does it encourage your child to predict what will happen? Does it relate to something your child is learning at school or in therapy? Does the book give you something new to talk about?
  • 15. How long should I read? Infants- as long as they stay focused Preschool- 5-10 minutes Kindergarten- 10- 15 minutes First- third grade- 20-30 minutes
  • 16. Reading ritual Try to establish a familiar routine Create a space Shared focus
  • 17. ExamplesGood Night Moon by Margaret Wise Brown  Pointing to and labeling the things in the bunny’s room: the red balloon, the telephone, the cow jumping over the moon  As your child gets older and becomes more familiar with the story, she will start pointing to the pictures (receptive language)  Your child will then be able to name all the things in the bunny’s room (expressive language)  Once your child is talking you can practice rhyming: “there were three little bears sitting in __________”
  • 18. ExamplesThe Three Bears by Burton Barton  Talk about the things Goldilocks finds in the bear’s house.” Look at Papa’s big chair and baby bear’s little chair.”  Make size comparisons between objects that you see in your own home: Daddy’s big shoe, your little shoe.  Act out some of the scenes in the story: setting the table, making oatmeal, sitting on chairs, sleeping in the bed.
  • 19. ExamplesThe Snowy Day by Jack Ezra Keats  Discussion about winter  Make a list of things you do in the winter  Cut out pictures from a magazine of things you wear in winter, make a collage and talk about the season  Create you own book about you child doing winter activities
  • 20. Books by age group Birth-3  The Rainbow Fish- Marcus Pfister  Hush Little Baby- Sylvia Long  The Runaway Bunny- Margaret Wise Brown  Brown Bear by Bill Martin, Jr.  Rosie’s Walk- by Pat Hutchins  I Went Walking by Sue Williams  Old MacDonald Had a Farm by Colin Hawkins and Jacqui Hawkins  Good Night Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
  • 21. Books by age group Age 3-6  The Snowy Day- Jack Ezra Keats  A Color of his Own by Leo Lionni  If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe Numeroff  Sam Who Never Forgets by Eve Rice  Sadie and the Snowman by Allen Morgan  Jack and the Beanstalk- Paul Galdone
  • 22. Books by age group Age 6-8  Strega Nona by Tomie dePaola  Frederick by Leo Lionni  Lentil by Robert M. McCloskey  Thunder Cake by Patricia Polacco  Wemberly Worried by Kevin Henkes  Freckle Juice by Lois Bloom  James and the Giant peach by Poald Dahl
  • 23. More activities available at ListenLoveLearn Blog LOIS KAM HEYMANN, M.A., CCC-SLP, is a recognized leader in the treatment of children with listening, learning and auditory challenges. As a private speech andlanguage pathologist, she has more than 30 years of experience working with families. Visit her website at