Sharpen Your Child's Communication Skills

by Sarah Blakeley

Teaching our kids to speak with clarity and confidence is important. Sharpening their communication skills sets them up for success because, as we all know, people often make assumptions about others based on how well they communicate.

As an English teacher, I endeavor to help my students reduce the frequency of "filler" words in their speech. To accomplish this, I have each student answer a few questions while I record the conversation. The student then listens to the recording and writes down, word for word, what she said, tallying the number of times she used filler words such as um and like. This is an eye-opening experience for tweens, who typically aren’t aware of all the fillers they use. It’s also a great way to illustrate how distracting those ums and likes can be.


This article appeared in the March/April 2013 issue of Thriving Family magazine and was titled "Um ... Like ..." Copyright © 2013 by Sarah Blakeley. Used by permission. ThrivingFamily.com.


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