conversations with kids

Talking to Kids Helps Brain Smarts

Blah, Blah, Blah = Rah, Rah, Rah!

Just this month, a new study: ‘Nothing short of remarkable’: Study finds parents’ chats with their toddlers pay off 10 years later has been released giving parents, teachers, and other caregivers food for thought about how to feed brains. With conversations!

“A study published this week in Pediatrics found that toddlers with parents who spend lots of time listening and chatting with them are more likely to have better language skills and higher IQs a decade later than youngsters left hanging in silence.”

Having conversations with kids nourishes and grows their brains. talking with babies and toddlers affects how kids do much later on in school. “The 18- to 24-month period is often called a time of “language explosion.”

“If you knew that children who were fed a certain nutritional diet at age two were not only far healthier as toddlers, but much more likely to be in a healthy weight range at age 12, you’d want to pursue those findings, wouldn’t you?” said study author Jill Gilkerson, senior director of research and evaluation at the LENA Foundation, a non-profit charity in Boulder, Col.
“Conversational turns are that diet, that nutrition, for the brain.”

Conversational turns are the back and forth of talking to others. One person says something, stops, and the other person takes a turn. Frequent back-and-forth talking with kids, even just coos and babbles for very young children “accounted for up to 27 per cent of their higher performance in verbal comprehension a decade later….”

Some days, when our parent brains feel like mush, it’s hard to think of something to talk about. For this month, the play-of-the-day calendar has some suggestions. Of course, kids often have their own ideas, so build on those. Use experiences that are relevant to your family. Most of all, enjoy and remember, these conversations are meals and snacks for brains.

september activities with kids