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Talk, Play, and Read is the title of a book on child’s language development by Jo Ann Gramlich, but they are also the key areas parents have to engage their children in for proper growth.

All throughout childhood, a child changes physically, mentally, and emotionally as they gain new skills that help them comprehend the world around them and interact with others. It is important that parents’ guide their child toward growth and facilitate a healthy learning environment. This is done through deliberate interaction, positive reinforcement, and strengthening bonds with your children. According to Jo Ann Gramlich, in her phenomenal book Talk, Play and Read, there are three aspects that parents can focus on to help better facilitate that development.  These areas include talking, playing, and reading and are made of the below listed skills:

  • Cognition – abilities related to thinking and problem-solving.
  • Socialization – abilities related to interacting with other people.
  • Sensation – abilities related to understanding the senses.
  • Emotion – abilities related to self-control and emotional regulation.
  • Communication – abilities related to language.
  • Psychomotor – abilities related to movement and the body.

What are the Three Aspects of Talking, Playing and Reading?

Three aspects being discussed here are related to emotional, physical, and mental development. By focusing on these three aspects, parents can better guide their children toward proper growth.


A relatively important aspect that parents can commit to easily and without much effort is talking. Communication is the basis for proper socialization and emotion. Without knowing how to communicate, a child cannot express themselves adequately, preventing them from forming relationships with others, and understanding themselves. This severely effects the child’s emotional development.

Talking is a skill and like every other one, must be practiced regularly. Before a child can go to school, it is important to immerse them in  a language rich environment with conversations coming from family members, particularly their parents. So, it is in the best interests of a parent to always talk to their child.

This helps the child learn how to look out for verbal and visual cues and also better understand their emotions.  They learn how regulate their emotions in order to engage in conversations with peers. They also learn how to socialize more efficiently too.


Playing is actually quite an important aspect of a child’s development. It is through play that a child can learn how to control their body and manipulate the world around them. It is also through play that a child can learn how to engage with others physically and emotionally. They also learn about boundaries and personal space.

Playing also encourages cognitive development by stimulating a child’s skillful and creative mind. If a child is playing with toys, they can create narratives or imitate real-life situations. Through these types of make-believe sessions, they can have a better understanding of how to react when similar situations occur. Regular play with other children also establishes lasting relationships and better opportunities for social growth.

For parents, playing with their children is also a chance to create special bonding moments together with their little one.


Reading is an extremely important area and skill that a child needs to develop in order to succeed in life. The absence of reading is detrimental to a child’s growth and it is only through reading that the other areas, talking and playing, can be enhanced.

Through reading, children are exposed to a wider range of information and topics of interest. Reading also allows a parent to teach their child how to process information and instill in them an interest in learning and a lifelong love of reading.

Looking for a handy book to start talking, playing, and reading to your child? Jo Ann Gramlich’s Talk, Play, and Read is available at all major online bookstores or

Jo Ann Gramlich is an award-winning author and speech-language pathologist specializing in helping children with communication disorders in Buffalo, New York. She holds a Master of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology from SUNY Buffalo and has extensive experience in early intervention, preschool, and school settings. Visit her on Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin.

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