Infant gesturing could signal 'enhanced comprehension'
Pre-speech gesturing by children at indoor soft play centres could be a sign of enhanced comprehension, according to new research.
Researchers at Radboud University in the Netherlands compared the responses of study participants to videos, some of which showed speech and gestures that were related to each other and some of which were not.
Volunteers were found to respond more quickly and accurately when the gesture matched the spoken word.
The researchers noted: "Results have implications for everyday communicative situations, such as in educational contexts (both teachers and students), persuasive messages (political speeches, advertisements), and situations of urgency (first aid, cockpit conversations)."
Earlier this week, director of operations at I CAN, the children's communication charity, Clare Geldard, urged parents to talk to their children as much as possible.
She added that improving children's speech can sometimes be as simple as "altering the environment around the child, making sure that you make the most of every opportunity that you've got".
Posted by Lynne Woods
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