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Early Learning

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Let’s chat! Conversations with infants

While babies are born with an innate ability to tune into language, their language development is shaped by the kinds of interactions they experience from birth. Professor of Early Childhood Sheila Degotardi looks at the importance of conversation.

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Little boy playing with an abacus

Quality programs for birth to threes

Many parents are anxious about sending very young children to a long-day-care centre. Professor of Early Childhood Sheila Degotardi answers the questions: Should parents be worried? What does research tell us about the impact on very young children?

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Boy in school uniform playing soccer alone in the school yard

Boys lagging behind when school starts

What role do biology and society play in boys not being as developmentally ready to start school as girls? Right from birth, boys and girls don’t begin life on the same starting block. The impact of this is a question researchers are trying to unravel.

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Little boy during lesson with his speech therapist

Child speech development milestones

A child's first word is an exciting time, but often we don’t recognise that preparation for speech starts much earlier than those first recognisable sounds. As parents smile and talk with babies, they are listening to the sounds that make up language.

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Group of young children playing

A parent's gift guide for sensory play

We want to buy gifts our children will enjoy, but taking a moment to look at our choices through the eyes of an occupational therapist can influence our selection in ways that can also help our child build confidence, resilience and self care skills.

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Boy building with wooden blocks

Giving children the best start in life

Research shows one in five Australian children are starting school developmentally vulnerable. The Australian Research Alliance for Children & Youth is leading a project to ensure every child starts school ready to learn, engage and face challenges.

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Mother and child sitting on bench and talking

The ongoing benefits of bilingualism

Researchers have found that the benefits of learning two languages as a child extend well into adulthood. For families who speak a language other than English at home, embracing that language can have many positive outcomes for their children.

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The role of parents and home learning

Dr Kate Liley highlights the importance of the home learning environment in supporting children’s development. She discusses how it features strongly in research as being key to children’s language, physical, intellectual and social development.

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