Tips for Parents: Supporting Speech and Language Skills at Home

Posted by Leah Schwed on


As a parent, you play a crucial role in your child's speech and language development. Everyday interactions and activities at home can significantly enhance your child's communication skills. Here are some practical tips to support and nurture speech and language development in your home environment.

  1. Create a Language-Rich Environment
  • Talk Frequently: Engage in conversations with your child throughout the day. Describe what you're doing, narrate your actions, and involve them in discussions.
  • Read Together: Make reading a daily habit. Choose a variety of books that interest your child and encourage them to participate by turning pages, pointing to pictures, and answering questions.
  • Label Everything: Label objects around the house and name them frequently. This helps your child associate words with their corresponding objects and actions.
  1. Encourage Communication
  • Ask Open-Ended Questions: Instead of questions that require a yes or no answer, ask questions that encourage more detailed responses. For example, "What did you do at the park today?"
  • Wait for Responses: Give your child time to respond during conversations. This patience encourages them to express themselves and practice their language skills.
  • Expand on Speech: When your child speaks, expand on what they say. If they say "dog," you can respond with "Yes, that's a big, brown dog."
  1. Play and Interaction
  • Engage in Play: Play is a natural way for children to learn language. Use toys, games, and imaginative play to encourage verbal interactions.
  • Sing Songs and Rhymes: Music and rhymes are excellent for language development. Sing songs, recite nursery rhymes, and involve your child in actions and movements.
  • Use Everyday Situations: Use daily routines, such as meal times, bath times, and grocery shopping, as opportunities to talk and introduce new vocabulary.
  1. Model Good Speech Habits
  • Speak Clearly: Use clear and correct pronunciation when talking to your child. Avoid using baby talk, and model proper grammar and sentence structure.
  • Be Expressive: Use facial expressions, gestures, and varied tones of voice to make communication more engaging and understandable.
  • Show Active Listening: Demonstrate good listening skills by giving your child your full attention when they speak. This shows that you value their efforts and encourages them to keep communicating.
  1. Encourage Social Interaction
  • Arrange Playdates: Social interactions with peers can boost language skills. Arrange playdates or group activities where your child can practice communication in a social setting.
  • Involve Family Members: Encourage interactions with other family members, such as grandparents, aunts, and uncles. Different conversational styles and topics can enrich your child's language experience.
  • Participate in Group Activities: Enroll your child in group activities like storytime at the library, music classes, or sports. These settings provide additional opportunities for communication.
  1. Use Technology Wisely
  • Educational Apps: Utilize educational apps and games that promote language development. Ensure screen time is interactive and educational.
  • Limit Screen Time: Excessive screen time can hinder language development. Balance technology use with plenty of face-to-face interactions and play.
  1. Be Supportive and Encouraging
  • Celebrate Progress: Praise your child's efforts and successes in communication. Positive reinforcement builds confidence and motivation.
  • Be Patient: Understand that language development is a gradual process. Be patient and consistent in your efforts to support your child.
  • Seek Professional Help if Needed: If you have concerns about your child's speech and language development, consult with a speech-language pathologist (SLP) for guidance and assessment.


Supporting your child's speech and language development at home is a rewarding and impactful journey. By creating a language-rich environment, encouraging communication, engaging in play, modeling good speech habits, fostering social interactions, using technology wisely, and being supportive and encouraging, you can significantly enhance your child's communication skills. Remember, your involvement and dedication make a world of difference in your child's ability to express themselves and connect with others.


The information provided in this blog post is for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, or provide medical advice for speech and language disorders. Individuals should consult with their own practicing physician for medical concerns and seek advice from a certified speech-language pathologist (SLP) for personalized assessment and treatment options. If you have specific questions about a medical condition or treatment, please reach out to your healthcare provider or a local SLP.