Communication: Toddler and Child

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Introduction1
Communication is not just the ability to talk and have a conversation, it is a way to express your feelings and it can be done in many ways. There are numerous ways that humans can communicate to one another, whether it is talking, laughing, writing, smiling, making gestures, or even crying. Many people tend to take the privilege of our communication skills for granted. We seem to underestimate the importance of communication, and how truly significant communicating really is. Cynthia Lightfoot and Merry Bullock examine how different age groups interpret contradictions in our communication. (Lightfoot and Bullock) In their examination they look at how our verbal-facial communications can oppose to one another. Also they observed how capable different age groups are to notice these types of contradictions. For example: Someone with a very angry face says “oh I am so happy!” we would consider that as a sarcastic remark due to the fact that their facial expression and their verbal expression contradict each other. They came to a conclusion that in comparison, adults can pick out those contradictions more proficiently than a toddler can. In another study, the observers proved that communication rapidly develops as the child grows. The most common communicative development is in social development, symbolic

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development, and speech development. Around the age of 8 months, the infant will most likely communicate using emotional communicative indicators, such as crying for attention, or making noises as well as some gestures. In between 8 and 12 months, the researchers noticed a lot more gestures being used to communicate. The most rapid growth of development will usually occur in the ages of 12-24 months of age. (Reilly et al.) Distinguishing the difference between a mother-infant relationship and a stranger-infant was not as easy and unsuccessful. When having young infants at the age of 2 months, the infant does not show any stronger connection to the mother. An infant that young will gaze upon anyone, whether it is a parent, or a stranger. What the observers happened to notice is that at an older age of about 6 months, distinguishing the difference between mother-infant and stranger-infant relationships was simple and successful. At 6 months, the infants are more aware of who their mother is. This shows that at a younger age the infant is not as conscious of who they are surrounded by. (Bigelow et al.) In another study, viewers looked at toddlers who use gestures as their way of communication. At an early stage in growth and development, they observed that it is common for a young child to not only gesture, but to vocalize as well. It was stated that gestures are often

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looked at as the first step to the development of a theory of mind. Usually when a child gestures or points towards an object, they want possession of that specific item. A child’s gestures emphasize their attempt to communicate what they might want. In most cases children tend to gaze along with their gestures and vocalization in order to get the attention and care that they want (Helene Cochet and Jaques Vauclair).

A study states that the development of girls’ language is usually, ahead of the development of boys’ language. Also, it is common that the first-born child is verbally ahead of the second born child, meaning that the child learns how to communicate quickly. This study explored and compared reading habits with a child’s language and communication skills. Unfortunately their study showed no real significant association. But what this study did show is that mothers who communicate more with their children have children with a larger vocabulary and better communication skills. Method

The purpose of this paper is to observe the communication of infants and toddlers, also to compare the differences of the communicative behaviors. In order to complete this observation I observed both the...
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