We have been catching up on some reading in trade journals and thought the following might be of interest.
In an article entitled, “Noise Hampers Children’s Expressive Word Learning,” children ages 9-11 heard new words in meaningful discourse, but some heard the words in white noise, while others heard them in a quiet environment. Children who learned the words in quiet were able to produce and use the words more accurately than the children who heard the words in noise. In addition, children were exposed to clear speech (slow, well-articulated) as well as plain speech (how we usually talk), and children who heard the new words in clear speech were able to produce and use the words more accurately than the children who heard the words in plain speech.
So what can you do at home?
• Remember that children learn words through listening as well as reading and writing.
• Speak a little slower and a little more clearly with your children.
• Turn off the TV when children are working on schoolwork, and even when you are engaged in conversation.
• Creating a quiet space and speaking clearly with your child are low-tech ways to help your child get ahead.