During the first 3 years of life, a child’s brain is rapidly developing and maturing. This is also the most intensive period for acquiring speech and language skills. These skills develop best in an environment that is rich with sounds, sights, and consistent exposure to the speech and language of others. The first signs of communication occur when an infant learns that a cry will bring food, comfort, and companionship. Newborns also begin to recognize important sounds in their environment, such as the voice of their mother or primary caretaker. As they grow, babies begin to sort out the speech sounds that compose the words of their language. By 6 months of age, most babies recognize the basic sounds of their native language.
Children vary in their development of speech and language skills. However, they follow a natural progression or timetable for mastering the skills of language. A checklist of milestones for the normal development of speech and language skills in children from birth to 5 years of age is included below. These milestones help doctors and other health professionals determine if a child is on track or if he or she may need extra help. Sometimes a delay may be caused by hearing loss, while other times it may be due to a speech or language disorder.
There appear to be critical periods for speech and language development in infants and young children when the brain is best able to absorb language. If these critical periods are allowed to pass without exposure to language, it will be more difficult to learn.
We here at H&H Child Care Training want to ensure that all children are given the opportunities to have a language rich environment and have created a course to help teachers provide such an environment. A Taste of Words is just one of the classes teachers can take to help children develop language skills needed for life.
H & H Child Care Training Courses grant .2 CEUs or more as well as awarding state approved clock hours of 2 or more for all childcare centers, and family childcare providers in many states. Check with your licensing agency to check for any additional requirements and to see if we are approved in your home state. Visit our website and schedule your next class today!