Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, your stubborn toddler will not imitate your words. So what do you do now? Here are some tips that might help increase word imitation at home:
1. Reduce the pressure and stress that might be placed on your child. When you are sharing an experience together, talk about what you are seeing. Instead of using "What is this?" try using "I see a big car!" Changing the way you are talking to your child by not being direct or placing too many demands can reduce the sense of frustration he or she might be feeling when asked to imitate words.
2. Try imitating your child's sounds. If your child says "meow" say "meow" back. If they are not forming words but are producing babbles or random sounds, imitate those back to them. Yes, it may feel silly but this method really works and has been effective for the most stubborn child.
3. Slow down! Talking too fast may create a breakdown in what your child is processing.
4. Be brief. Sometimes parents use full sentences to communicate with their child. This sounds good in theory; however, developing a whole new language takes time. Use short phrases, it will be easier for them to remember which will encourage them to use it on their own. For example, instead of saying "I see a really big yellow school bus!" to a toddler you could say "Look big yellow bus!"
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