Before toddlers can master a language, they keep on picking words randomly to try and come up with a sentence we can all understand. This process is still very complex and their young minds haven’t fully grasped it yet. With time though, everything comes together.
The biggest mistake parents make, is trying to rash that process and doing it wrong.
What is this wrong thing you ask? Children learn from us because we are their immediate environment. If we show them the wrong thing, that’s what they will learn as the right thing. It builds up and forms who they become.
That’s why if your toddler speaks to you in his language, which is broken, the correct thing to do is to respond with the proper language. That way, they learn from you. Responding to your child in a broken language delays his/ her speech and slows their learning.
In a study done by the University of HML, two groups of toddlers were studied over twenty years. In one group their parents responded to them in a broken language while in the other they were responded to correctly. The findings were remarkable! Kids whose parents responded to them correctly were not only eloquent in their speech but were also more confident, and had longer attention spans. While their counterparts had communication problems, a higher percentage to do drugs and were also more likely to get into fights.
Children are supposed to learn at their own pace. Don’t try to force your child to potty poop when in reality they are not ready. Parents are further encouraged to constantly have different conversations with their kids. It will help in their brain development and learning how to strike a conversation with different people any time anywhere. A vital networking skill needed later on in their lives.
Therefore, read to them storybooks from as early as when they are still in the womb. Sing to them, put some music and so on. They will always be learning something.
If you are reading this and you are a parent, I know it’s not easy to trust your child to do it on their own. The fear is simply too real. We all imagine the 1000 things that could go wrong, but just do it. As a father though, it is more instinctive to let your kids learn on their own. Try and embrace more of that, and the best way to do this is to always be doing something they can learn from.
If you are too busy, enroll them in a particular skill. Let them learn by observing. This is how our ancestors used to learn and pass it to the next generation. They had stories that carried the lessons, and teachings about the community, 70 percent of what they learned however came from their environment through observing what’s happening. All this happened at its own pace and they let it. Lets learn from that.
Molding a child the right way is no easy task, it takes us looking at ourselves, because at the end of the day, they become us, they take up more of what we do than what we tell them. As such strive to be the best version of what you are and your child will have something to aim for and higher.
Check out my next article on Why you should listen more to your child and talk less.