Central Bedfordshire Council is part of a new campaign to help parents support their child’s communication skills during their early years.
The Five Key Messages campaign focusses on five of the most important activities to help children develop their communication skills, to help children make friends, talk to others, listen to people and understand what they say.
Lisa Mitchell, a speech and language therapist from Cambridgeshire Community Services NHS Trust said:
“Communication skills are vital to children’s development, there are lots of great ideas to help these skills to grow through the campaign and videos to watch for ideas on our website.
“Lots of children have difficulties with their speech, language and communication skills but small changes can make a big difference to children being able to learn to communicate to their potential.”
Parents will be given ideas on how to help their children develop their communication skills, and will promote one of the following key messages each week:
- Let’s Get Talking: talking to children from a very young age helps them learn words and sounds, and as they get older can help them develop social skills
- Let’s Get Listening: helping children learn to listen and pay attention is a key skill, and will them as they grow and attend nursery and school
- Let’s Get Playing: children learn really well through play, and parents can teach their children words and sounds by joining in
- Let’s Get Rhyming: something as simple as singing songs or nursery rhymes can help children’s speech and language develop
- Let’s Get Together: spending time together helps children learn words, and being face to face with them helps them learn expressions
Cllr Sue Clark, executive member for families, education and children, said:
“We want parents to know that just by building in very simple activities to their time with their child, like singing nursery rhymes or talking while playing, they can make a huge difference to their children’s lives and set them up with skills that will benefit them for years to come.”
The campaign will run across Bedfordshire Children & Young People’s Services, Luton Community Health Services and Central Bedfordshire Council’s social media channels for the next five weeks.
More information is available on Luton and Bedfordshire’s Children’s Speech and Language Therapy website.