Your child 1-3 years

This summer, focus on language


This summer, how to dive with your toddler in a bath of communication and give him the urge to talk? Follow the suggestions of Marie-Josèphe Rancon, speech therapist.

Summer: the opportunity for a better listening

  • During the year, everything goes fast. And you do not always have the time to calmly listen to your little speaker who chains seemingly meaningless syllables, skin the words or tell his stories in the most complete mess!
  • During the holidays, give him this time. That of fumbling, to make successive attempts to get as close as possible to the correct sound and build up your sentences. To listen to it, sit down, do not do something else at the same time, look at it carefully. He needs to feel that he is a worthy interlocutor, worthy of the word.

Make it enjoy a varied language

  • "Soap yourself!", "Put on your shoes!", "Put away your toys!" Most of the time, pressed by everyday emergencies, you use vocabulary and utilitarian gestures with your child.
  • Enjoy the holidays to vary the forms of expression, use a richer and more diversified vocabulary. You can start a story telling an anecdote related to a place you visit, or in a description to share a landscape of walking.
  • Why not also put in words what your toddler is doing, the emotions you feel, and so on. Your mission - if you accept it! - is to turn you into talking models, into "suppliers" of new words and pretty phrases!

Logic, coherence!

  • Learning to speak requires a certain rigor: impossible to put words or sentences in any order, without any link between them. There are all kinds of ways to make this necessary coherence understood by your child. For example by telling him the story of his family, by making him aware of the links that exist between him and other people, between different generations. Or by explaining the process of transformation in nature, how the seed becomes a flower then fruit, or how the caterpillar becomes butterfly.
  • Take advantage of the summer trips to take him to see grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins, and make him touch the subtleties of his family tree, tell him his family. During the walks, show him and tell him how animals and nature live and evolve, if need be, by helping you with small documentary books.

Songs or nursery rhymes?

  • Both, my captain! Each of these forms of playful expression favors language in a toddler. Songs, thanks to the vocabulary and sentence structures they contain; but also because they allow the meaning to go through the infinite modulations of the human voice. The rhymes, they, are often a very good training in diction and phonetics. And then singing together, reciting nursery rhymes with gestures, eyes in the eyes, a smile hanging on the baby's, is such a pleasure! Why deprive yourself?

Isabelle Gravillon

Our Progress in the Summer issue