Developing Expressive Language
Watching children develop their language skills is an extraordinary thing. Watching a baby transition from cries, to gestures and calculated eye contact, to grunts, to sounds that sound a little like words, to words is fascinating.
So how does a baby move from babbles and almost words to conversation? Does this happen at nursery, at pre-school? This, like everything in education, begins in the home with the child’s parents and caregivers.
There are two types of language: expressive and receptive. Receptive language is the child’s understanding of language and the meaning they take from the words that are spoken to them. A child’s expressive language is the way in which they use language to interact. Although expressive and receptive language go hand in hand, in today’s post, I’m going to focus on expressive language.
A child’s ability to become a little conversationalist does not come out of the blue. We often think that children are born with a certain ability. I challenge you to think about a seed. A seed has certain potential. However, if it is not exposed to the right conditions and given the right amount of care, it will never be able to reach its potential. Children are much like seeds. If they are not nurtured, and given the right amount of nourishment and care, they will not reach their potential. Language development involves a lot of nurturing. We often get as much out of language development as we put into it.
A child’s environment impacts their vocabulary and expressive language skills. If you want your child to have a rich vocabulary, they must be immersed in an environment with a rich vocabulary. If you want your child to be able to hold conversation with not only their friends, but the adults around them, they must be used to environments where they are included in conversation.
Expressive language is key to a development. Children who have difficulty with expressing orally by using their words and language may also have difficulties with:
So how can you as a parent encourage the language development of your child? I am going to borrow the concept of the 3 T’s from Dr., researcher and author Dana Suskind. Through her research and the development of the Thirty Million Word Initiative, which works with parents to help encourage language development, she came up with the 3 T’s. Tune in, talk more, and take turns. These three t’s are to allow for maximal brain development in early childhood…as this is the time when intelligence is most malleable with children.
Tune in: The making of a conscious effort to notice what a child is focusing on, and when it is appropriate, talking with the child about it. When a teacher or parent is tuning in, they are following and responding to the child’s lead.
Keys to tuning in:
Talk more: Increased focus on talking with your student on what they are focused on.
Take turns: Conversation exchange should be engaged.
The result of building the three T’s are the development of:
So, to conclude, remember that young children are like sponges. Although there is a certain amount of growth that happens naturally, their learning and likelihood of reaching their potential is a direct result of their environment.
Leadership Training at EGYC
On Saturday Mrs. Guilmise spent some time with a group of young leaders at the Edward Gartland Youth Center. During their time together, they focused on exploring the Qualities of a Leader. Special focus was put on discussing Responsibility and Accountability.
At Learn and Lead, we love to learn through play. The young leaders enjoyed playing Minefield, which is a great game that we use to illustrate essential principles of leadership.
This morning we concluded our first round of DEI training at Fortis TCI. Diversity, Equity and Inclusion training is an essential and welcome tool for many companies trying to get their next level. Diversity training is about awareness. DEI workshops challenge participants to gain a deeper understanding of the complex elements of the subject matter and apply that understanding they live and work.
Congratulations to Fortis TCI, for taking the initiative to train their entire company on this topic!
Live 2 Lead Conference
Earlier this week I was honored to be part of a panel to discuss Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the LIME Live 2 Lead Conference. This conference, which was a John Maxwell Conference, was a combination of live panels and virtual speakers. There was both a Live and virtual audience. So many great learning moments in this conference! I especially enjoyed John Maxwell and Patrick Lencioni's contributions.
The DEI panel was moderated by Samuel Dormeus, and the other panel members were Darron Turnquest, from The Bahamas, and Larraine Kennlock.
This morning I had such a great time working with Paradise Smiles. We looked at 'Building Our Team Dynamic.' This is a great workshop that facilities teams learning and playing together. During our session together we looked at how to develop chemistry between members and a sense of unity. Topics in today's session included:
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Reading is all around us. Whether you are reading Facebook status updates, Tweets by your favorite celebrity, or chatting with a friend on What’s App, you are constantly reading. We live in a society that thrives on bite size chunks of reading. I have a question for you though, when was the last time you read a book?
In a world where we are constantly bombarded by notifications, where binge-watching is a stress reliever and where multitasking often seems like an essential, many have let go of reading for pleasure. We look for quick and efficient blog posts (like this one 😊) that can be read in less than 5 minutes and summary articles on professional development topics that interest us. The thing is, pleasure reading should be part of our personal and professional growth game! The benefits of daily reading go far beyond the obvious that are often highlighted to children and teens. Adding an intentional 10-20 minutes of reading a day can be game changing to one’s personal and professional life.
Here are my top 5 benefits to daily reading.
On Monday February 27th I will be a panelist at the Flow Live2Lead Leadership Conference! Live2Lead is a leadership development experience that is designed for leaders to gain practical tools to equip themselves with new perspectives.
I am excited to speak about a topic that I absolutely love to discuss: Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.
Register Here: https://bit.ly/3EmGbwY
Yesterday I was excited to take part in "Nurturing Young Minds, Building a Strong Foundation." This workshop. a joint initiative between the Early Childhood Department of the Ministry of Education and UNICEF, targeted parents and teachers of children between birth and 4 years of age. The day began with Mrs. Lakeisha Gardiner - Wilson, Nutritionist, from the Ministry of Health. She presented on the "Importance of a Healthy Diet for Young Children."
Learn and Lead focused on some of our favorite topics - Early Stimulation, Positive Discipline and Self-Regulation. The first 1000 days of a child's life are so crucial to their development and their overall emotional, social, academic development. This was a great initiative by the Department of Education and UNICEF.
language and Litearcy Development
The early language and literacy skills of a student lay the foundation for all future learning. The ability to read is considered a critical factor in the ability to live a healthy, happy and productive life. Without the skill of reading, it makes all other learning challenging.
The early years of a child's life are critical years for brain development and are when the foundation of language and literacy development occurs. Once a child enters school, the teacher usually becomes central in developing this foundation. Our students benefit when we understand the process of learning language and literacy and become Master of It.
Today we had the pleasure with once again working with K1 - grade 2 teachers from around the Turks and Caicos Islands. We focused on 'Effective Early Language and Literacy Development,"
Nurturing Your Sister-Friends
Today's post is especially for the ladies.
For as long as I can remember, through multiple seasons of my life, the one word that has driven me the most is ‘connection.’ I find connection fascinating and believe that we thrive through human connection. As an educator, trainer, and coach, I am constantly reminded of the power of connection one’s learning. The best learning happens when strong connections are present. But how does connection affect our personal lives? More specifically, how does it affect women?
Although both men and women thrive when they connect with others, women have more of a need for it. From ancient times women have shared their lives. Sisterhood was essential for survival. Even before outlining the source of strength and comfort, sisterhood was needed for helping to raise children, cooking, daily tasks, and the especially monumental task of childbirth. Women needed to help each other through day-to-day challenges to survive. A benefit to this was that this sisterhood also helped to improve their resilience and increase their level of happiness.
As we have evolved, we have moved away from living in closer communities and even if some may continue to live in small communities, community connection has a different feel. We now can connect through technology in an instant, yet our level of sisterly connection isn’t necessarily increasing.
Whether it’s the day to day demands of the corporate world, being overrun by toddlers or teenagers, or a plethora of other reasons, many women find their time is stretched extremely thin. This can shift much needed connection time to the back burner…or quite frankly out the back door. The thing is, female friendships are extremely powerful. They can be activators to our next levels.
Women may not need each other to survive in the same ways as they did in ancient times, but when women are intentional about building each other up, nurturing their tribes/sister-friend relationships, amazing things happen. Here of my favorite benefits:
Yolande Robinson, M.Ed.