MEMPHIS, Tenn., Sept. 19, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Squeals, coos and babbling are part of the conversations mothers are having with their infants. And, as delightful as that is, this conversation—if done right—will give the baby an academic advantage when he or she reaches school age. So says Vonda Scipio, Ed.D., a mother, grandmother, early childhood educator and author of the new book, Let Babies Teach: Learning Child Development Through Observing Infants and Toddlers, and the included companion guide, Let Me Teach You, Baby: How to Help Infants and Toddlers Grow and Develop Literacy Skills.
Dr. Scipio says mothers typically are instinctively good at engaging their babies in conversation but can't always put their finger on what they did that got their baby to respond. However, mothers can be taught the skills they need to engage their babies in a more deliberate dialogue.
- Moms have to learn not to talk "over" their babies. That means pausing to wait for the baby's response which could come in the form of an eye movement, moving their head from side to side or cooing.
- As early as one month old, babies are more likely to "talk" when they are given a chance to respond to their mother's words.
- The three-second rule applies. Wait that long after you make a funny face for the baby to respond.
- Communication styles vary by age: coos and squeals, from birth to seven months; and babbling, four to 12 months. Mothers who supplement their child's babble sounds with some words will encourage baby to speak.
- Begin reading to your baby as soon as possible, positioning the baby in your arms so he or she can see the book.
Credentials: Vonda Scipio, Ed.D., has worked in early childhood education for 18 years. She has been a kindergarten teacher, academic reading instructor, and adjunct professor. For the past six years, she has worked as an early intervention specialist and supervisor/trainer of early intervention specialists. Over the course of her career, she has delivered coaching and training to hundreds of families of infants and toddlers in their homes and child care facilities. She has worked for Tennessee's Early Intervention System, University of Memphis, (Project Memphis) and Southwest Tennessee Community College. Dr. Scipio has an adult daughter and two young grandchildren.
Availability: Memphis, nationwide by arrangement and via telephone
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SOURCE Vonda Scipio