Here’s one thing you can do to jumpstart your child’s literacy skills, whether or not Seattle voters approve one of the two early learning measures on the November ballot.
One of the most important ways you can interact with your infant is simple: Talk. A lot. If you do, you greatly increase your baby’s future language skills. That includes vocabulary, rate of vocabulary growth, listening, speaking, semantics, syntax and, later, reading comprehension. The amount of talk that gets these results, according to a landmark study? Two-thousand, one hundred words per hour.
That number freaked me out. So I dug into the research as I wrote my new book, “Zero to Five: 70 Essential Parenting Tips Based on Science.” Here’s the story:
Betty Hart tried everything she could think of to improve the vocabularies of the 4-year-olds in the low-income preschool where she was teaching. She couldn’t do it. Finally, she and Todd Risley, her graduate supervisor at the University of Kansas, figured out that, by age 4, it was too late.
They wanted to know why.More