To many school-age children, language and math are subjects learned in the classroom; the integral role of these skills in everyday life is sometimes overlooked. However, the thought processes required for language and math are the building blocks for nearly all other skills. The earlier a child begins to master these skills, the more adept he or she will be at future learning.
Language development involves both expression and comprehension. Language expression is the ability to produce sounds that are used to express a child's needs and thoughts, while language comprehension is the ability to understand others. Activities such as listening, singing, repeating, reading, and speaking all promote language development. A child's language develops rapidly when they are surrounded with both the spoken and written word.
Here are some things you can do to promote the development of language skills:
Math skills are developed as children interact with objects. Concepts such as size, shape, form, numbers, sequencing, and grouping are all included in this category.
Keep in mind that the early years in a child's development are the most critical; whatever you can do to enhance the learning process in these years will provide a head start for your child in the future.
The ABC's Of Child Development
Mental Health America
About Kids Health
Children's Mental Health Ontario
Activities to encourage speech and language development. American Speech-Language-Hearing Association website. Available at: http://www.asha.org/public/speech/development/parent-stim-activities.htm. Accessed August 31, 2012.
Developing early math skills. Zero to Three website. Available at: http://www.zerotothree.org/child-development/early-development/supporting-early-math-skills.html. Accessed August 31, 2012.
Speech and language development milestones. National Institute on Deaf and Other Communicative Disorders website. Available at: http://www.nidcd.nih.gov/health/voice/pages/speechandlanguage.aspx. Updated September 2010. Accessed August 31, 2012.
Your child's communication: kindergarten. American Speech-Language-Hearing Association website. Available at: http://www.asha.org/public/speech/development/kindergarten.htm. Accessed August 31, 2012.
Last reviewed August 2012 by Brian P. Randall, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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