About Communication Skills, Language Development, Technology & Autism

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If I were to boast of my specialties, I’d say I’m forever thankful to my parents for raising me into a woman with great communication skills. This special talent has helped me a lot in different areas of life and has taken me to wondrous places. Being able to express myself well and get my point across in dealings always helped me have what I want – it kept me happy.

This is why I want my child to be as good as I, or even better, when it comes to communicating with others. You too, right? Fortunately, there are now many smart devices available in the Philippine market proven to help kiddies develop good communications skills, even those with autism. These modern tools can serve as great aid for kiddies’ social development along with positive interactions.

Interactions Kiddies Need

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According to Nicole Gardner-Neblett and Kathleen Cranley Gallagher, researchers at the UNC’s Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, “The interactions children have with adults influence early brain growth and learning, giving early childhood educators a crucial opportunity to provide children with interactions that can support language and communication.”

With this, you should understand the importance of your kiddie’s interactions with early childhood educators. Unless you homeschool your child, make sure that the school where you enroll them at teaches how to express oneself through gestures and facial expressions. Your kiddies need to learn how to understand others, most importantly.

Kathleen Gallagher added, “When teachers provide children with higher levels of language stimulation during the first years of life, children in turn have better language skills.”When teachers ask children questions, respond to their vocalizations, and engage in other positive talk, children learn and use more words.”

Keep these in mind before you choose a school for your little one. Take time to know the teachers and check their syllabus. In a polite way, ask how they facilitate interactions, if they prioritize language and social development, and some of the educational tools they use.

Autism and Smart Devices

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Language development is different when it comes to kiddies with special needs. Expressing oneself and engaging with others might be difficult for most autistic children. Fortunately, a recent Canadian research suggested that smart technologies such as touch devices may serve as therapeutic tools for these kiddies.

According to Rhonda McEwen, assistant professor of Communication Culture and Information Technology at the University of Toronto Mississauga in Ontario, “Using the touch devices, the study participants demonstrated knowledge gathered throughout their education that could not be elicited via traditional assessment means that rely on verbal communication.”

The professor added how the use of smart devices resulted to peer-to-peer social interaction among participants. Parents of autistic kiddies attested to how much their children enjoy using these technologies. Autism experts, on the other hand, acclaimed the effort to unlock technology’s potential.

As parents, we all want success for our kiddies. We want them to reach places and achieve their most impossible goals in life, through excellent communications skills. This is why we should be responsible in doing our part as their first teachers and in choosing a good institution for their primary education. Especially for parents of kiddies with more delicate needs, we have to make the most of what technology offers today. There are many kiddie tablets sold in the market that serve as effectively educational and engaging aids for learning, for children of all ages.

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How to Foster Love for Reading in Your Kiddie

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I came across a quote that says, “A child who reads will be an adult who thinks.” I smiled for a moment and pondered on its reality in my life. After a moment, I found myself thanking my mom for doing her best in influencing me to read when I was very young.

Pushing your kiddie to read may be a little difficult today than it was before. There are a lot of distractions your kiddie may find difficult to ignore other than the call of cartoons and outdoor activities. While these two are also essential to your child’s development, you must make them understand the importance of having a heart for reading before anything else.

What child experts say about reading and development

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According to Julie Wells, president of the Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA),
“Books continue to form the cornerstone of childhood education and development. Nothing can fire up a child’s vivid imagination more than reading a book, or having one read to them, because it is their imagination that is creating the images from the words they’re reading.”

She also explained the academic and social benefits that come with enjoying reading, which have been well documented. “It is the absolute joy kiddies can find in reading that is so important,” she added.

How many books are required

But how many books should your kiddie read in a year? In 2013, UK Education Secretary, Michael Gove answered it precisely saying that children should be reading 50 books a year by the age of 11. Child development experts in Australia, on the other hand, suggested that parents read 5 books a day to kiddies or at least 10 minutes daily.

Children’s author, Mem Fox, also gave away an opinion that parents should read 1,000 stories to kiddies aloud before they learn to read by themselves. According to the woman behind the book, Reading Magic: Why Reading Aloud To Our Children Will Change Their Lives Forever (Mariner Books), reading aloud and talking about what we’ve read sharpens kiddie’s mind. They also learn how to concentrate, solve problems logically, and express themselves more effectively.

What you need to do

ImageTo nurture a love for reading in your kiddie, set aside a regular reading time at home. Turn off the TV and other distractions, and make it a habit. Bring your

kiddie to the local library and let them know what the librarians can do for them. Another tip is to talk to your kiddies about books. Ask about what they like in the stories they’ve read to know about their interests and preferences. Most importantly, be a model good reading habits.

Materials that could help

Now that you live in a highly technological world, you have more options than bringing your kiddie to the library. At a very young age, you can encourage your child to read by letting them have their own educational toy. Kiddie tablets available in the market today are effective aids for learning, as they promote fun studying and engagement. For best results, choose a device with an ‘educational ladder’ feature that adjusts to the user’s age and level of knowledge.

Make sure that the device contains applications aligned with the developmental milestones of kiddies. Most of the ‘educational ladder feature’ caters to students in kinder to primary school. A great way for children to learn at their own pace with an interactive touch screen technology!

Perks of having a reader child

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There is no doubt how reading gives kiddies an edge. Compared to other children, those who read will have a better understanding of how things work. This will be noticeable to educators, as they would not find difficulty explaining even complex matters to these kiddies. They are also the one more likely to excel in class.

As we’ve said in the intro, kiddies who read will be adults who think. I agree to this, as I remember my younger years associating situations with things I’ve read to solve a problem. Just be careful parents when choosing a book for your kiddies, be careful with what you feed their mind.

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Gifted Kids Are Born, Smart Children Are Taught, But Intelligent Kiddies Are Made

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Long before you have decided to get married and have a baby, you hoped to have a gifted kiddie you’d be proud of,right? So now that you’re in the actual stage of this challenging yet fulfilling endeavor, you wonder if smart children are born and not made. Well, let me tell you that the power to raise an intelligent child lies in you and your partner’s dedication to do your part as responsible parents.

Notice how I used gifted, smart, and intelligent interchangeably. These three words all mean the same thing, referring to being exceptional and superior. However, in the real world of child rearing, gifted is more of talent, smart of cleverness and wit, and intelligent is of academic performance.

While gifted children are born with their unique talent, and smart children successfully acquired cleverness and wit through experiences, intelligent kiddies owe it to their parents. Here are ways on how to raise intelligent children you’ll surely be proud to call your living legacies.

Nurture your kiddie’s love for reading

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According to research, kiddies who read develop a lifelong interest in the activity, enabling them to do well in school and succeed in adulthood. Start reading a story to your toddler every night until they learn to read on their own. Other than giving your kids a good impression about reading, it also serves as a head start to develop language skills.

In today’s world of modern technology, you can give your kiddies their portion of innovation with tech products that serve as aids for reading. Opt for one preloaded with apps that feature the perfect approach to kids of all ages. Search the web for e-learning gadgets available in the Philippine market.

Praise efforts not inborn gifts

Praise your child’s efforts to study and learn instead of paying too close attention to their inborn gifts. If you do the latter, they’ll tend to choose easy tasks and avert any challenge that can damage their reputation of being smart. Challenge is crucial and they need it to grow, along with failing every now and then. Failing, on the other than hand, shows that a person sets goals that are high enough. Your kiddie needs to experience both so as to achieve anything worthwhile in life.

After praising your kiddie’s effort, don’t forget to reward them with a healthy gift (such as favorite food or school item) whenever they have new achievements from learning and studying hard.

Provide your kiddies with the right meals

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In a report published last year in Perspectives on Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science, experts mentioned that the first effective way to boost child’s intelligence is by supplementing their diet with fish oil. In infancy and childhood, the amount of the Omega-3 DHA or fish oil is closely tied to intelligence and cognitive performance. Do your job as a responsible parent by giving your kiddies meals with great amounts of fish oil more frequently.

In addition, provide your kids with vitamins perfect for their age, fresh fruits with every meal if possible, and vegetables for more balanced and intelligence-boosting meals.

Recognize the positive effects of physical activities

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Let your kids out of the house to play. More than developing social skills as they play with other kiddies, it also promotes foundation for intellectual, physical, and emotional skills. They will learn to combine impressions, feelings, and ideas. Play is also a great way to exercise and increase blood flow to the brain to build new brain cells. It helps develop mental sharpness other than strong bones.

Monitor daily activities and technology use

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In this age of technology, your child may prefer to stay inside the house to play video games or log in to social media over any activity. As parents, it is your responsibility to regulate their tech use by monitoring daily activities and setting a good example. Doing this will also instill self-discipline. Furthermore, explain also that technology and devices were invented to improve life for everyone, not to encourage children to depend on it in any unhealthy way. For balanced learning and holistic development, teach your child to allocate time to physical and e-learning activities.

Kiddies can be gifted, smart, intelligent, or all of these three. Intelligence, however, is the only one completely dependent on how you perform as a parent. Cling to the passion and dedication you have, follow the guidelines mentioned above, and raise intelligent kiddies who will be worth all the effort you’ve invested.

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