Thursday, August 30, 2012

“Play and Talk” are the key to academic success.

Parents who want to stimulate their children’s brain development often focus on things like early reading, flashcards and language tapes. But a growing body of research suggests that playing certain kinds of childhood games may be the best way to increase a child’s ability to do well in school.” Play is one of the most cognitively stimulating things a child can do,” says Megan McClelland, an early-childhood-development researcher.

Language acquisition and fluency comes from face to face interaction between an adult and a child, not from a gadget or a flash card. Face to face interaction is how children play with language and play is one of the most cognitively stimulating things a child can do.  Children's brains grow at a dazzling pace in the first years of life. Most of a baby’s 100 billion brain cells aren’t yet connected in networks. Those cells become connected when babies have stimulating experiences: reading singing, talking, and playing. 

Research from the US Department of Education shows that early language experience actually stimulate a child’s brain to grow. Young children and infants need to be surrounded by people talking and talking a lot. Talking develops a child’s use and understanding of language, which is the basis of reading. Vocabulary development by age 3 has been found to predict reading success. 

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