“The limits of my language means the limits of my world.” -Ludwig Wittgenstein, Language Philosopher
Stop for one moment and consider this quote. For most adults language is taken for granted. Sometimes it is even shortened and abbreviated into its own unrecognizable form. Other times it is difficult to find the “right” words to convey feeling or accurate tone. Adults who have typically mastered at least one language will often struggle with it and navigate their way through a range of options. Children, however, do not have the mastery of language to rely on and are attempting communication in many ways. This course has been developed to consider these communication attempts at multiple developmental levels and stages though exceptionalities do exist and alter the otherwise “typical” developmental language milestones. It is critical to consider the resources and tools that this training course will provide and also to understand the absolute necessity of knowing the whole child.
Physical development of children changes with age, experience, special circumstances and more. Intellectual development of children also changes with those factors but where language is concerned we see an overlap of physical and intellectual development. Infants communicate through cries and coos initially and eventually graduate to a babble that turns into phonemic sounds. Dada, mama, baba, tata are common infant vocabulary words. After infants develop these foundational word sounds the toddler develops them into more precise words. Daddy, mommy, dog, nummy, are just some examples of common toddler phrases. The toddler years are also when a child begins to say their name along with names for pets, siblings, and relatives. Language begins developing at an astounding rate! Next, the preschool years give children a refinement period where they begin pronouncing words correctly and string together more complicated phrases and sentences. They understand the difference between a question and a statement and answer accordingly. When the child begins school around 5 years of age, they are communicating with many new people and their speech begins to evolve into an understandable mixture of words and phrasing.
Language development continues throughout a person’s life at least in basic forms, but the beginning stages of language and speech development is where we begin our journey into these milestones.
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