First words: identifying risks to language development
Language is a uniquely human ability that helps us to learn from other’s experience and is the foundation for so much of what happens in life.
That is why falling behind in language development can prove to be a substantial disadvantage that affects a child’s ability to thrive at school, form relationships and get a job.
Daniel Christensen, Telethon Kids Institute Life Course Centre research fellow, says there is rapid change in a child’s brain in the first few years of life, making their home environment and relationship with carers incredibly important.
“Language development is the result of quite complex interactions between the child, their family, their school and the community and that all takes place in a broader social and cultural context,” Mr Christensen said.
Researchers at Telethon Kids are contributing to a growing body of research that has identified a number of beneficial factors and risks to language development from birth.