Follow your child’s lead and have fun while enhancing language development. In this fun and user-friendly course for parents, teachers, and caregivers, you will discover how children learn to process language and how they become proficient speakers and thinkers. This course will help you enrich your child’s life by stimulating his or her continued speech, brain, and language development in an enjoyable, age-appropriate, and natural way.
In this first lesson, you’ll learn how to use play and instinct to communicate soundlessly with a newborn, to help your child fill the language-building toolbox, and to create a stimulating environment for language development. Then, we’ll look at why your child’s mind is made to file, sort and choose to use sounds to communicate, and you’ll learn straightforward ways you can lend a hand (even in the form of sign language!). This lesson also includes a fascinating overview of brain and mouth anatomy.
In this lesson, we’ll explore what makes a word real and how to interpret your child’s patterns of simplifying early language. You’ll also start using a journal to uncover the rich potential in your child’s one- and two-word phrases. Then, we’ll soothe your concerns about language delays by discussing what to watch for, when to seek assistance (and from which type of specialist), and when to stop worrying and keep playing!
In this lesson, we’ll match favorite infant-caregiver games to the neurological functions they stimulate. You’ll also learn how language affects the development of thinking skills, just as the function of thinking affects language development. Then, you’ll find out how to help your child progress to past tense, contractions, pronouns, and conjunctions. You’ll also learn about the fascinating thought processes behind questions.
In this lesson, we’ll continue with a few more do’s and don’ts for caregivers, emphasizing our favorite learning tool: games! Then, you’ll learn how sounds depend on strong, agile mouth muscles. Before you start thinking about tongue push-ups, remember we always focus on maximizing the opportunities within natural interactions. A discussion of feeding—including your choices of bottles, cups, and straws—is key. We’ll answer complex and controversial questions about pacifiers, sippy cups, and thumb sucking, and I’ll provide some great tips for easing necessary transitions.
In this lesson, you’ll find out what you’re teaching when you encourage your little one to play with sounds. You’ll also learn which speech games will help you make the connection from speech to reading. Then, you’ll learn how language is used to communicate and connect with others. We call this social use of language. You’ll learn how to help your talker become a conversationalist!
Understand how to connect your child’s learning style and use of language. And finally, you’ll learn about where literacy begins and how it is nurtured with fun and games.
Prerequisites / Requirements
There are no prerequisites to take this course.
- This course can be taken on either a PC or Mac device. A few Windows-specific examples are included. Mac students are welcome, but may not be able to duplicate all examples.
- PC: Windows XP or later.
- Mac: OS X Snow Leopard 10.6 or later.
- Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
- Adobe Flash Player. Click here to download the Flash Player.
- Adobe Acrobat Reader. Click here to download the Acrobat Reader.
- Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.
- Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.
When can I get started?
A new session of each course opens each month, allowing you to enroll whenever your busy schedule permits.
How does it work?
Once a course session starts, two lessons will be released each week for the six-week duration of your course. You will have access to all previously released lessons until the course ends.
How long do I have to complete each lesson?
The interactive discussion area for each lesson automatically closes two weeks after each lesson is released, so you’re encouraged to complete each lesson within two weeks of its release.
What if I need an extension?
The final exam will be released on the same day as the last lesson. Once the final exam has been released, you will have two weeks plus 10 days (24 days total) to complete the final and finish any remaining lessons in your course. No further extensions can be provided beyond these 10 days.