Early Childhood Hub

Ensuring quality interactions for effective language development in the Early Years

Written By: Eleanor Milligan
6 min read
Eleanor Milligan, Lecturer in Education, University of East Anglia, UK The importance of language skills It is well evidenced that children’s language development in the Early Years leads to better outcomes for children. Law et al. (2017) showed that communicative development in the Early Years affected not only later language learning but also academic success. We also know that the benefits go far beyond this: good language development in the Early Years not only leads to better outcomes for children in schools, but also impacts on mental health, later employability and lifelong chances (Law et al., 2009). The importance and impact, therefore, of all interactions, including those within Early Years settings as well as in the home learning environment, cannot be underestimated. Critically, however, it is not just the quantity of language that a child hears but, as Weisleder and Fernald (2013) clarify, it is the quality of those interactions that counts. This identification o

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