Communication Development in Children with Language Delays Language-learning can be a life-the role of communication in child development journey, but the bulk of that journey takes place in our earliest years. Studies have shown that during this critical period, children learn language by participating in back-and-forth interactions with the important adults in their lives. When a child sends a message, whether it be with a gesture, a sound, or a word, his parents’ responses serve as helpful feedback that reinforce and encourage his learning. If a child is communicating less than others his age, he is unlikely to receive as much of this essential feedback.
Because he isn’t talking, adults naturally communicate with him less, so he doesn’t get the optimal, helpful input he needs to build his language skills. This is why it’s so important not to ignore any sign that a child’s communication development may be delayed. On the other hand, when a child with a speech delay or language delay receives extra support from the important adults in his life, he can make significant gains. Early speech therapy intervention is critically important for these children to develop the communication skills necessary for future success in their academic and personal lives. Recognizing a Speech Delay or Language Delay An estimated 1 in 12 children in Canada has a speech delay or language delay.