Recent comics

Do children need to hear each language equally to become bilingual?

Do children need to hear each language equally to become bilingual?

Some kids may hear Japanese at home and English at school. Other kids may hear one of their caregiver’s speak Spanish and the other French. Bilingual children grow up learning two languages, but how much they hear or speak each language can vary greatly. Typically,…

How can I strengthen the language skills of a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder?

How can I strengthen the language skills of a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder?

The back and forth between speakers is one of the foundations of language. When one person speaks, soon after another person responds. It would be uncommon if a friend responded 5 minutes after you said something to them. It would also be surprising if that…

How can the sense of touch help children learn language?

How can the sense of touch help children learn language?

Children can use all their senses to help them learn language. Touch for example is a sense that children rely on from their very first days, while their other senses like sight and hearing are still developing. Touch can help children learn words. Some of…

Does showing an object while saying the word help a child learn vocabulary?

Does showing an object while saying the word help a child learn vocabulary?

When we meet a baby, we may make more exaggerated gestures than we may when talking to an adult. Can these modifications, be they small or big, actually make language learning easier? One way that our movements and gestures can help a baby learn language…

How do I build a strong foundation for a Deaf child’s literacy skills?

How do I build a strong foundation for a Deaf child’s literacy skills?

When we think of literacy, the first thoughts that come to mind might be the shapes of letters or characters or the hand movements used to write those letters or characters (see Do we need to teach handwriting these days?). There is, however, more to…

How do all the people a child interacts with influence her language development?

How do all the people a child interacts with influence her language development?

The scientific sources of our comic: Havron, N., Ramus, F., Heude, B., Forhan, A., Cristia, A., Peyre, H., & EDEN Mother-Child Cohort Study Group. (2019). The effect of older siblings on language development as a function of age difference and sex. Psychological Science, 30(9), 1333-1343.…

What are the most important sources of language for a child?

What are the most important sources of language for a child?

Even very early in life, a child may hear or see language from many different people. They may go to nursery school or kindergarten and interact with educators or fellow peers. They may spend time with grandparents. They may have older siblings who play with…

How does caregiver codeswitching (or mixing languages) affect a child’s language development?

How does caregiver codeswitching (or mixing languages) affect a child’s language development?

At first glance, codeswitching can appear to be a difficult way to learn languages. Instead of learning each language neatly, in isolation, children have to make sense of two languages intertwined. This may be just an impression however. Codeswitching can help a child strengthen skills…

Is it ok to mix languages when I speak to a child?

Is it ok to mix languages when I speak to a child?

Caregivers who speak two (or more) languages may use a mix of languages in some conversations. Switching between languages is, pretty straightforwardly, called ‘Codeswitching’. Codeswitching can be used between sentences, where one sentence is in one language, and the next in another language. For example,…

Do we speak to babies the same way all over the world?

Do we speak to babies the same way all over the world?

We adjust our speech from moment to moment, depending on the situation. Imagine  introducing yourself at an interview versus presenting yourself to friends-of-friends at a party. The way we speak to babies, also, varies a lot from place to place, and even on the baby…