Taking Turns (Joining in)
Studies have shown that music supports the development of the brain as well as the development of language and literacy skills. Music also supports the development of other areas such as memory, attentionand listening skills.
You can use music to teach your child to take turns before they can talk.
Why is this helpful?
Studies have shown that music supports the development of the brain as well as the development of language and literacy skills. Music also supports the development of other areas such as memory, attention and listening skills.
Music is fun and engaging. Young children are captivated by their mother’s singing voice more than her speaking voice. It grabs their attention and prepares them for learning.
Because nursery rhymes are so predictable and repetitive, it’s perfect for teaching your child to take turns.
What do I do?
Choose a song that your child knows well. Songs that involve movement and gestures will engage your child more. Some of my personal favourites are:
- Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes - https://youtu.be/tS-lbKtPXpo
- Open, Shut Them - https://youtu.be/ziSR3ZLeDR4
- Rock A Bye Your Bear - https://youtu.be/QMte8BFCqfY
- If You’re Happy and You Know It - https://youtu.be/Fa9Kv-fFKB0
Gestures are important for early language learning. It helps children understand that actions and words have meaning. When you teach the gestures, always model the gestures yourself. Your child might imitate your gestures. Sometimes your child needs a little help. Prompt him by taking his hands and gesturing with him.
Pause when you are singing to let your child have a turn. A good time to pause is during the climax or highlights of the song. For example:
- If you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands (pause).
- Everybody clap (pause), everybody sing (pause).
What can we do for you?
We can show you how to support your child’s communication development through music. We will help you choose goals based on your child’s stage of development. If your child isn’t yet using words, the goal will be to get him to use single words. If your child isn’t using short phrases, the goal will be to get him to use full sentences.
What will I see?
As you continue to sing songs with your child, you will notice them joining in more. Your child may respond with increased smiles and eye gaze. They may start to initiate interactions with you. For example, they may start to open and shut their hands to request the ‘Open, Shut Them’ song.