How often do you talk to your baby? Do you vary the words you use? Are they encouraging words, linked to an accomplishment? These questions are more important than you might think. Researchers at Rice University have determined that a child who is talked to frequently, with a variety of words and in an encouraging way, develops better vocabulary, reading comprehension, and positive self-esteem with lasting results into later years.
How many words did a well-developed child hear? Over 30 million! Over what period of time? Birth to three years old! And where do they typically hear them? In an “ideal setting”, 86% to 98% of those 30 million-plus words come from within the home. That’s the problem—with a two income family, “ideal” can’t possibly exist; there simply isn’t enough time to interact with and speak that many words to your child.
That’s where preschool can help. Starting as soon as practical after a child is born, attending IPS programs with other parents or sending your baby to preschool while one or both parents work, helps provide a good start on your child’s development. While attending an IPS program, your baby will be exposed to more words and different words which augment what is done in the home. In addition, IPS programs can help parents learn tools and techniques to interact with their new-born. One example is a web site called “thewordgapapp.com”, from which you can download an app which helps address the “30 million word challenge” in a fun and enjoyable way. Give it a try!
IPS, working in support of parents, care-givers, and all who come in contact with our youngest children, will help give Islesboro children the best start they can for a healthy, happy, and productive life. To learn more about IPS visit islesboropreschool.org or “Like” us on Facebook.