It’s wonderful to see the signs of spring all around us. This is the perfect time to check on the bulbs you planted way back in the fall if you did the activity in Sprout’s October newsletter. They will soon be sprouting through the soil.
Building your child’s vocabulary is something that is easily done through the interaction you and other adults have with the child. Classification is a very important activity in math and language arts. You can prepare your child by thinking about and planning the conversation ahead of time.
When walking in the environment look at the plants that are just sprouting and getting ready to flower – daffodils and tulips, and the plants that are already fully grown – crocuses and snowdrops. Look at the blossoms coming on the trees. Talk about things that are fully grown and things that are just starting to grow.
Group objects that are in the same categories together and then compare them. All of these are shoes some are black and some blue; all of these are towels some are white and some green.
Talk about opposites – my boots are wet and your shoes are dry, this plant is short and this tree is tall, this bag is heavy and this book is light, it is daytime and it is light and it’s nighttime and it is dark. Rough and smooth, shiny and dull, slow and fast, loud and quiet.
Talk about the comparison of size, my shoes are too big for you, your coat is too small for me, look and compare the size of objects in your home and during a walk outside.
Talk about how some things are the same and some are different. These flowers are all yellow, these plants are all green, and these leaves are all shiny, my hands are clean and your hands are dirty. Look at the food on their plates and discuss the different textures and tastes.
As your child becomes more accomplished at observing things in this way you can start asking them to point things out gradually increasing the list each object has to fulfill, ‘can you show me something you would put on your feet, can you show me a red object you can put on your head, can you show me something that is very big and shiny and makes a loud noise.’ This is helping them to label things in their environment.
Use opportunities to interact with your child as times to extend their vocabulary and understanding of their world. Enjoy!