Language and Vocabulary

Communicate at every opportunity

Rich language and two-way conversations lay the foundations for a happy home. You can use every part of life to connect with your child and strengthen your bond. Keeping the lines of communication open means your child feels HEARD and VALUED. They will be happy to listen to you and follow your directions when necessary. There is an important distinction to make in the types of language you're using with your child. DIRECTIVE LANGUAGE is being told what to do, how and when. Sometimes you may feel you're doing a lot of this when really you'd prefer having conversations. CONVERSATIONS are about sharing ideas and discovering more, together:

  • Narrating what you're doing when you change a nappy, cook a meal or put on shoes

  • Offering a choice of which vest to wear, which arm to wash first, what colour cup to use?

  • Being honest and keeping sentences short and sweet when setting limits

  • Smiling and singing, telling stories, reading books and poems

  • Naming objects and their different parts

  • Including interesting vocabulary in everyday conversations

  • Using open-ended questions: why, what, how, when, where?

We call this giving an environment RICH IN LANGUAGE.

  • Collaborating in daily life activities and doing nice things together helps your child feel good.

  • Using assertive language allows everyone to express how they feel and what they would like: "I feel... I’ve decided that... I want... I don’t want..."

  • Communicating throughout the day shows your child you're happy they're part of your family. It lets them develop self-esteem and self-worth in a healthy way.

Ask yourself,

  • Do you find yourself mostly giving your child directive language?

  • Or are you already including lots of the conversation ideas mentioned above?

  • Can you add anything else to your daily conversations?

Vocabulary Cards and topic activities

You can find lots of free pictures to print and make cards or little books at home. Here are some links with free printables:

Link 1

Link 2

Try out simple topics such as fruits and add simple home activities to enhance the experience:

  • Find, feel, smell and taste 1-3 fruits

  • Print and make language cards

  • Read stories with fruit in (e.g. Handa's Surprise)

  • Find images with a lifecycle of the fruit

  • Make fruit salad

  • Bake things like fruit muffins, tarts or purees

Positive phrases to use at home Link

Free Audible stories

Amazon cancelled subscriptions and you can stream stories absolutely free as long as schools are closed! Use this link to find out more and sign up: Link