Saturday, July 12, 2014

Coaching parents on toddler talk to address word gap

Coaching parents on toddler talk to address word gap: JUDY WOODRUFF: Now: closing the education and language gap for kids from low-income families.

Special correspondent John Tulenko of Learning Matters reports on one program trying to tackle the problem by talking more to toddlers.

JOHN TULENKO: In Providence, Rhode Island, 2.5-year-old Nylasia Jordan is part of a closely watched experiment in language development. To boost the number of words she hears, under her shirt she’s been wearing a small electronic word counter.

Called digital language processors, they have been given to some 55 toddlers whose families are on public assistance through a city program called Providence Talks.

Andrea Riquetti is the director.

ANDREA RIQUETTI, Providence Talks: And what we ask the families is that they put it inside of the pocket and then we ask the parents to put the vest on the child as soon as they wake up in the morning and then wear it throughout the day.