How children learn to speak
We have been talking for a very long time and yet we do not fully understand how most children learn language. Language is considered to be a fundamental human characteristic: it enables us to communicate with others, tell stories about our past, to think and express ideas – to connect over space and time. Children around the world learn to speak their ‘mother tongue’ without any formal training.
Children learn words at different rates but generally in the same stages. At first they utter simple object names including people and learn greetings and how to say ‘No!’
Once they start to combine words, they learn - on average - one new word every two hours right up to the teenage years.
And they understand much of the world around them even before they can produce phrases themselves.
Lexy has been designed to help parents and carers capture the words that their children learn through their eyes. By photographing the objects, the people and the environment with which they are familiar, the adult can re-present this world to children for them to recognise, point and speak the words they use for the image. The sounds and images create a personalised picture-book for the child, an album that captures their development to share with family and friends and a record for the future. But it can do so much more.
What are the factors that influence language acquisition? Does the oldest sibling learn faster than youngest? What happens if the child grows up in a bilingual home? Do quiet parents make more space for their children to speak?We would like to know more and Lexy users can help us.