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Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Helps with Speech and Language

By Maureen Penko

As I write this article I have an array of books in front of me each highlighting an experience. Education through books, for our children is an experience and one that is a lifelong love. Speech and Language Development begins at birth and continues to unfold for us well into our adult years. However, there are critical periods in a child's growth and development when we pay closer attention to ensure that certain skills have been established. These are: Sounds, speech patterns, sentence building, vocabulary and social communication skills foundations are all in place by age five.
So, let's begin with what you need to know about your 4-year-old child who in a year may be getting ready for school.
You need to be informed so that when you visit your doctor the guidelines can help you share any concerns you have about your child's speech and language development.

Guidelines for 4 years of age:

  • Child speaks in sentences
  • Your child can carry a conversation; asks and answers questions appropriately
  • Is able to take turns in play and in conversation
  • Follows directions
  • Is 95% clear to most people
  • Enjoys social exchanges and playing with others and knows the rules of some games

You will start to see Billboards that advertise kindergarten registration dates.

Getting your child ready for school is very important and the preparation should begin at least one year before school entry.

Part of being ready for school is to make sure that your child receives any extra help they need before they enter school. We know that having clear speech, well established understanding of language, use of words to express themselves and dynamic play skills are needed. So, make sure that your child is seen by a speech -language pathologist early. Waiting until your child enters school is not the best plan, and places your child at a disadvantage.

Books are a wonderful tool to focus on the link between language and reading, especially in the Preschool years. Much has been written about the link between early reading to children and later success in school, and reading abilities in general. February is "I Love to Read Month" and in writing this article I wanted to focus on the link between language and reading, especially in the Preschool years. Much has been written about the link between early reading to children and later success in school, and reading abilities in general.

Research has shown that when parents use questioning while reading to their children it helps develop their love of books while also building their vocabulary and imagination. Creating stories and reading helps your child with "learning to read" in the primary grades. Once children begin using their skills to discover and learn from books, their abilities to think in abstract terms comes into play. If these skills are developed through reading and questioning at an early age, then this will be an easy transition for them.

The idea of rhyme, repetition, pattern and sounds and the idea that letters are sequenced is highlighted in the book "Chicka Chicka Boom Boom" by Bill Martin Jr and John Archambault. It's a book that lets us ask the question what letter comes after A?

Anytime we read to a child we are modelling the rules of language, especially if it is a favourite book that a child asks to have read over and over again.

In the next issue, we will talk again about the value of questions. For now, regardless of the age educate your child with visuals, colour, sounds and music. We have the privilege of being able to use 3 D imagery to educate our children and more importantly to expose them to a variety of experiences. All of this translates into language and preparation for a love of learning.


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Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Helps with Speech and Language


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