ANSWERING WHAT QUESTIONS IN REFERENCE TO ACTIONS: (FOR EXAMPLE: WHAT AM I DOING?)
Asking questions to your little one will help to elicit language….and also will help in her understanding of language……however…you have to be sure of what your expectations are and what your little one is capable of understanding and communicating.
Let’s start off with the first picture above….you can clearly see that the girl is jumping. A great strategy to help your little one both understand and use language is this:
As you are jumping…ask your little one: What am I doing?……wait and see if she is able to answer. Hopefully the visual of you jumping will cue her to say jumping….even if she is not understanding the phrase: What am I doing?….she may answer correctly by saying JUMPING….because the visual gives it away…..now this is not cheating….it is helping your little one to understand language better….because you are tieing your action and words together.
Now if she does not have the language to answer the question….you answer the question for her…..with a simple one word response: JUMPING. Being sure to change your pitch and inflection…giving your verbal production some melody.
Continue asking simple action questions….remember to choose actions that are familiar to your little one…..here is a list below:
Now let’s refer to the second picture above…
ANSWERING WHAT QUESTIONS IN REFERENCE TO OBJECTS: (FOR EXAMPLE: WHAT IS THAT?)
In order to help your little one understand WHAT questions (in reference to objects) and also use her language to answer WHAT questions….you can use the strategy listed below:
Find familiar objects in your home….you should use objects that your child is familiar with….so that answering the question is not too much of a challenge. Point to an object and say: What is that? Now your child may answer the question and say: BUS….because you are pointing to the BUS. She may not be understanding the actual question: WHAT IS THAT? However, the more you repeat this type of question…and point to the object as you ask the question…..the easier it will be for her to answer the question without the visual of you pointing. So moving forward….she will eventually understand a question like: What is that?……without the visual (you pointing to the object).
Now if your little one can not answer the question…..answer it for her…changing your pitch and inflection…putting a little bit of melody to your answer…with a one word response: BUS. Questions like: What is that? as you are pointing to the object…are the easiest types of WH questions for your little one to answer.
Remember children learn through repetition. Continue to practice the WH questions in reference to actions and objects. And if your child can not speak yet….and can not imitate what she says….no worries….take the pressure off of her…….you do the talking….use the self talk strategy…(find this strategy under the teach me to talk page).
And remember to have fun with your little one or big one!