North Carolina Early Learning and Development Progressions: Birth to Five

Domain: NC Foundations for Early Learning: Language Development and Communication (LDC)

Subdomain: Learning to Communicate

Goal: Children understand communications from others.

Skill Progression: Understand communication from others

Age: 6-8 Months

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Distinguishes friendly and angry talking

Situations for Observation of Skill

Observe the child’s face as adults talk in different tones of voice.

Elicitation Strategy

Have adults talk and laugh about a happy topic, then talk about something that makes them angry.

Behavior Observed

The infant’s facial expression changes as the tone of the voice of the adult changes. The infant will stop smiling or vocalizing and listen to the harsh tone. The expression may then become flat or furrowed.

Routines-based Intervention (Embedded Instruction)

Children learn that part of communication is tone and inflection. Attaching meaning to inflection and tone is an important step in comprehension of what someone is trying to communicate. Help early childhood educators and parents understand the importance of consistency in communication. Facial expressions, tone, intonation, and words need to be congruent. Otherwise, children receive a mixed, and confusing, message.

 North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015

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