'Talking on the Go'
Q. I have
barely any quality time with my preschool child because of having to work two
jobs. But I really want to do the things I know I should, to get him ready for
school. I feel guilty that he's in day care all day, five days a week. How can
I make it up to him in what little time we have together?
course, you're busy. We all are. But there's something that comes very
naturally to you, that you can do for your child anytime, anywhere, and it's so
simple, it'll make you smile: you should talk to him!
neat new book, "Talking on the Go," for parents as well as day-care providers
and preschool teachers, that presents a number of easy-to-do ideas for building
your child's communication skills. You can build vocabulary, listening skills,
reading readiness, writing readiness, speech production and conversational
skills, all while just being with your child at home and in the car, at the
park and in the supermarket.
of the biggest problems with having so many American children in all-day mass
child-care settings is that their models for speech are other small children.
Also, the tendency to watch TV or videos, either at home or in structured
settings, cuts down on our children's conversational and listening abilities,
simply for lack of practice. They're not communicating - they're staring at a
are complaining that more and more children have trouble getting facts and
ideas into coherent format when they speak and write in class. It is believe
that this is because adults are not spending enough time with children,
conversing with them, and modeling good speech and communication patterns.
also note that many children tend to communicate with gestures instead of using
words, probably for the same reason - they are inexperienced
conversationalists. It is probable that the increase in "acting out" behaviors
- hitting, kicking, temper tantrums - is due to this deficiency in normal
much fun is this solution? It's simple, it doesn't cost anything, and it'll be
just as good for you as for your child. Just talk with your child - lots and
lots and lots.
feel guilty about having to work. Do feel guilty, however, if you don't have
your child in a good day-care program in which the adults understand what it
takes to help build a child's speech and language abilities, since they are
crucial for school.
do feel guilty if you DON'T do exactly what you say you want to do - help your
child get into the best shape possible for learning, before that kindergarten
year begins. This book could be an excellent tool for doing that, and it might
be a great gift for your child's day-care staff as well.
book costs $40 unless you belong to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.
Authors are Dorothy Dougherty and Diane Paul.
more about the book in the bookstore of the American Speech-Language-Hearing