New Year's Resolutions for Better Communication

Happy New Year! As we look forward to a new year of growth and changes, it’s important to keep in mind that those changes could also be made within the areas of speech and language. Here are some helpful New Year’s resolutions for yourself or your children to improve speech and communication skills.
  1. Look back on events from the previous year and talk about the highlights. Sit down with your child and ask him/her to list some of the great things your child did in the past year. If your child struggles with this, try coming up with prompts that will help them remember what they did. Recalling past events is a great way to improve your child’s language and memory skills.
  2. Practice, practice, and more practice! Before an important speech or presentation in school, practice delivering the speech out loud.
  3. Play more! Children love to play with all types of toys and various games. Try to sit with your child as they interact and play with new toys. Always remember to laugh, smile, be bubbly and use an animated voice.
  4. Encourage your child to tell stories. Storytelling is great for strengthening a child’s imagination and vocabulary. If they have trouble, ask them open-ended questions to help move the story along.
  5. Pay more attention to your body language. Non-verbal cues often reveal more than we think they do. Whether it’s eye-contact, posture, or how much you cross your arms – these elements play a role in your speech clarity and how effectively your message comes across.
  6. Work on getting rid of unnecessary conversation fillers. Cutting out um’s and ah’s from your speech is one way to improve the way you communicate and helps you to appear more confident. 
  7. Put your phone down when you’re around other people. Getting rid of any distractions and taking the time to communicate with people face-to-face is important.
  8. Take time to sit down and read with your child every day. Reading daily to young children can help with language development and literacy skills.
  9. Be a better listener. To communicate effectively, first listen to what others have to say. Then you can provide a thoughtful answer that shows you have taken those ideas into account.
  10. Remember language is everywhere, even if your child doesn’t understand everything you are saying, he/she needs the exposure. Talking about everything that you are seeing or doing will help your child to learn.
If you have concerns about your child’s language development, the Speech-Language Institute (SLI) offers an array of services. Speech-language pathologists can assess your child’s language skills and create a customized treatment plan to help improve communication. 

Schedule an appointment with an expert at SLI today by calling 215.780.3150.