Many are aware that reading to young children helps their brains develop. A host of recent research studies have further highlighted the positive impact that conversation with young children has on their learning and brain development (BBC, October 1, 2019). It is not enough for children just to hear conversation occurring around them, and it is not the number of words they hear that matters most. Rather, it is conversation with their caregivers, involving the child’s participation, that makes an impact. Children whose parents (and/or other caregivers) involve them the most develop much stronger verbal skills—giving them a great advantage over children who are not regularly involved in such conversations.
In today’s fast-paced society, some parents spend as little as 15 minutes a day interacting with their children, placing their sons and daughters under the burden of a great learning disadvantage. God makes it clear that His earnest desire is for “the hearts of the fathers” to be turned to their children (Malachi 4:6). He also directed parents to talk throughout the day with their children about God and His way of life (Deuteronomy 6:7). Such directives clearly emphasize how important such instruction is to our Creator. But, with this new understanding of the developmental significance of conversation between parents and children, we see that obeying God’s commands may have an even greater impact than we might have imagined. Parents who take the time to really talk with their children have the opportunity not only to pass on God’s teachings, but also to help their children’s minds and communication skills develop—providing a great blessing to them in the long run! To gain more valuable tools for raising godly and well-developed children, read or listen to Successful Parenting: God’s Way.