I Can the children’s charity has created two sets of beautiful cards to help parents and practioners promote language and communication skills in children from newborn to eighteen months and in their further pack Toddler Talk.
What they say:
Babbling Babies is a beautifully illustrated activity pack to promote communication development of babies from birth to 18 months old.
New babies are geared up to communicate, they do this when they let you know that they are hungry, uncomfortable or tired. How you respond to them will teach them the skills that they need to turn these cries into words then sentences over the next two years. Babbling Babies includes 30 inspiring activities for parents and adults to play and develop a baby’s communication skills.
The activities have been developed by practitioners with specialist experience in developing communication with under threes. Each activity has an idea for babies from birth to 6 months, 6 – 12 months and 12 – 18 months. The activities are focused on the following 5 areas:
- Playing and interacting
- Learning to Listen
- Learning and understanding new words
- Expressing myself
- Exploring and developing
So with stacks of cards and activities, you can help baby to babble, become a chatty baby and then a talkative toddler*. When you do this, you are building on those early brain connections and giving them the best start to life
I have to admit I really like these cards! I did find on my first flick through that a lot of them were things we do anyway, such as singing rhymes like row row the boat, and copying faces, babbling to each other etc, however others stood out to me as ideas I hadn’t thought to try with bubs. What I found really useful was that the cards give you an idea of what to expect from babies at different age stages and how to adapt them for those stages. We already had a treasure basket but the cards relating to that gave me a few ideas for things to add to it which was really helpful.
Another key point is the cards are relatively teething proof after bubba had a good suck on one!
Communication is vital from a young age and I know not all parents find it easy to communicate and dare I say ‘play’ with their baby and I feel these cards could be really helpful in those kinds of settings. I even showed them to my outreach worker from our children’s centre who loved them and was off to buy her own to use with families she works with as well as my health visitor who thought they were brilliant.
The ideas aren’t just about communication and many relate to the idea of play and interaction with babies, some felt quite simplistic but I know in some situations that is what is required.
The cards are divided into different categories and for a few weeks now every day I have just shuffled through and grabbed one out and we’ve done whatever is on the card.
Overall I am throughly impressed by these. They are an invaluable resource to parents but I believe even more so to family support workers, health visitors, nursery staff and other professionals who could make great use of these. They come in hardback and paperback options with the paperback starting at £7.99, not a lot to pay when your looking at the long term benefits of helping your child communicate.