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Why It's Important to Talk to Toddlers

Many parents strive to develop their children and make them the happiest version of themselves. A scientifically proven way to do this is to simply talk to them, whether they are a baby or a toddler. One such study published in 1992 showed that children from disadvantaged areas hear about 30 million fewer words by the age of 3 than their peers who live in high-income families. It is considered unreliable due to suspicions of bias. However, many agree with a conclusion that emerges from it, which is the importance of the number of words children hear in their first years.

Recently, a similar study was carried out at the University of York. This study examined the relationship between the number of words children hear and development that is not limited to verbal abilities. In this article, we will present to you the encouraging conclusion of this study and useful advice that will help you raise a highly-developed child.

woman and toddler sitting in the window

The research and its main conclusion

To understand the conclusion of the research and the advantages it brought forth, we need to first look at the methodology. This included documenting 3 days of life for 107 kids and engaging in joint activities with their guardians, such as drawing and matching shapes. This was done to assess the children's cognitive capabilities. One of the findings that emerged from it is that those who were exposed to a wide variety of words from parents presented more non-verbal abilities, meaning that being exposed to language assisted them to develop not only linguistically but in other areas as well.
child drawing in a coloring book

Benefits of interacting and conversing with toddlers

It has been suggested by experts that the kind of language used in a child's environment can have an effect on how they interpret and use language. Therefore, parents need to set an example and communicate with a wide range of words, allowing their children to grow. For this approach, you need to think beyond the number of words you speak and focus also on non-verbal communication and emotional connections. Even those parents who are not particularly talkative can still be beneficial to their child's development, as long as they give them love and care.

One approach to helping children learn is to implement positive parenting strategies which involve talking to the child, encouraging them, and providing them with knowledge about their immediate surroundings. This method allows them to explore the environment and express themselves, which contributes to their growth. Furthermore, when a child senses that their parents are listening and understanding them, they become more confident and better equipped to interact with others.

adult and child in a field

How do we communicate with toddlers?

Now, after we have presented you with the benefits that come from talking to children, you must be wondering - how do you communicate in a way that will help them develop? Many parents don't know that the answer to this question is very simple: talk to them in whatever style you want! One of the experts in the field testified that she spoke to her babies in a mature language.


That being said, we admit that talking to those who cannot answer us, such as babies, may feel strange to some people. If you also feel this way, you should start by telling your child about your day in their normal adult language. This will help them speak correctly and help them get to know the world. With older children (two-year-olds and above), you should read and ask open-ended questions about what they see and hear around them. If such a habit still seems strange, do it anyway until you get used to it because it will be beneficial in the long run.

What about engaging children in watching TV and playing on a mobile phone? Is it a beneficial way to teach, instill values in children, and educate them? In light of the benefits of the research paper discussed above, you may think that such measures are a wonderful and effective way to teach a child new words, general knowledge, and new skills. Well, many experts claim that the language a child hears via devices is not influential at all. Moreover, the same experts emphasize that even so-called educational information is not as useful as the information a child receives from parents and other people around them.

a girl and woman using the laptop

New vocabulary and language, in general, must come from parents and the people in one's immediate environment because they give a child warmth and love - two factors that render the conversation meaningful and that help the developing mind of a child.

Even though technology might not be physically damaging to kids, it can still take away the precious time they could have spent speaking to you. This would have positively influenced their development. To that end, specialists suggest talking to your child often and asking open-ended questions - this applies to both younger and older children. Furthermore, it is essential to have in-depth discussions with kids, not just idle chats. Finally, bear in mind that the greatest present you can give your child is the ability to express themselves and grow. Therefore, take some time and hug your child, then start talking.

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