Sunday, 21 April 2013

Why should you talk to a baby?

I've  just come back from a restaurant in Uttoxeter where families are encouraged (Helen Stretton is cringing now after the last time I mentioned someone she knew by co-incidence!). On an adjacent table were 6 adults and baby in a  high chair at the end. I would say the baby was about 6-8 months. They had no toys for him to play with and didn't talk to him at all for the half hour we sat near by. Occasionally if he whimpered, the mother tapped the high chair tray with her finger nails but did not look at or interact with him. He didn't wimper much as he was obviously used to them ignoring him.

He was beautifully dressed and obviously well cared for physically but they had no clue they could be, or should be including him in the conversation.

Why should they have been interacting with him?

Babies' brains need stimulating in order to develop properly:

By 22 months – a child’s development can predict outcomes at age 26
By 2 years – 75% of a child’s brain growth has occurred
By 2 years – the experiences of the child physically affects the brain structure
By  4  years – the difference in the number of words different groups hear is 19 million
By 5 years – a child’s vocabulary will predict their educational success and outcomes at age 30
So if you were the family in the  restaurant this evening, please make sure you are stimulating your little one much more than you do now!
We have some lovely new sessions in the Tamworth area to look at the marvellous first year, what factors help promote communication and what hinders development: Coton Green Community Room 1pm Wednesdays or Mill Lane Link 10am Thursdays

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