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When we speak with a child who is in the process of acquiring language, not only what we say helps the child to learn language but also HOW we say it. Our way of approaching the child, of interacting and attracting their attention, will be key in this process since they will motivate them to respond reciprocally and initiate new communicative instances. Do you know the technique of the 4 haches to favor the understanding and use of language?We tell you!
Children learn language incidentally, without making any effort through the natural stimulation provided by the environment. Parents play a crucial role in making this process take place, adding language to everyday interactions.
How can we get more out of the moments of interaction with our children? I propose this strategy: The 4 HACHES, (The Hanen Program) so that the interactions with your child are more effective and in this way you can take better advantage of the instances of play and learning together. What does it consist of?
- Speak less
When speaking with the child, use short and simple sentences. Sometimes it is difficult for us to adapt to their language level and we talk more than necessary! If a child is in the 2-word matching stage and we ask him a question or a very long comment, it will be difficult for him to understand and answer it.
Children find it easier to understand and remember words when we speak LESS. It is also easy to imitate words if it is highlighted within a short sentence. Let's look at an example: 'Felipe, go get your shoes because it's late to go to school we have to look for your brothers.' This sentence has 19 words and a ton of information to understand. Instead we do say to him: 'Felipe, bring your shoes. Let's go to the school. To find your brothers. This phrase has short, simple sentences, easier to understand and imitate.
- Make emphasis
If important words are highlighted, they will attract more attention to the child and he will be able to understand the message better. They can be emphasized by pronouncing them with a lot of intonation and a higher tone of voice. Let's look at an example: 'The DOG is very HUNGRY'. In this sentence, DOG and HUNGER are emphasized. This way the child is more likely to be able to repeat them.
- Talk slow
If when we talk to the child we speak more slowly, he will have more TIME to understand and respond. Increasing the pauses between sentences is a strategy to help the child while he is processing linguistic information.
Finding the words, selecting the phonemes that make them up and evoking them seems very easy, but it is not! For a child who is learning the language this is a complex process, it needs time, tranquility and attention.
Your patient waiting will help him organize what he wants to say. While he's talking, show your interest by looking into his eyes and showing anticipation. Another strategy that can help you is to lengthen the words and pronounce them slower. This helps your attention and recall. Let's look at an example: 'The boy was very happy because it was his birthday'.
- Make it visible
Young children learn language better if they can SEE as they speak, they are visual learners. Through visual information, they can better understand the meaning of words, anticipate and evoke more easily.
How can we incorporate visual aids? Showing or pointing while we are talking to our child; adding gestures, signs or actions while we speak; and using images accompanying what we say. Today technology gives us the possibility of always having photos or videos at hand that will help us to accompany our conversations, so that the child can rely on this and thus facilitate communication.
And, once you know what this is about 4 beam technique, do not forget to be very expressive and accompany your words with many gestures and facial expressions. It is key to REPEAT frequently the words or phrases that you want your child to learn and incorporate them in different situations, so they will have greater opportunities to hear them, understand them and later say them. For example: if you want him to learn and use the word WATER, you will say it every chance you get: 'Do you want water?', 'What delicious water', 'The water is hot / cold', 'It is wet, water fell on the floor 'or' To the water duck '.
It is not necessary to insist on repeating the words, that moment will come, but the child will first enjoy the shared experience, then they will understand the words and phrases and finally they will be able to say them.
You can read more articles similar to Technique of the 4 haches to develop children's language, in the Language category - On-site speech therapy.