Children are hard-wired from birth to learn language, and listening to adults is a key component for language acquisition by children.
The Language Domain activities are designed to help parents to talk with their children and teach them new vocabulary. Recent research has indicated that children from families with lower incomes are exposed to only 600 words per hour, while children from professional families are exposed to more than 2,000 per hour. By age 3, children from lower income families will have heard 30 million fewer words in their home environments than children from professional families. Research further indicates that this disparity matters; children who are exposed to more words tend to perform better in school and have a higher IQs.
The HIPPY curriculum helps parents provide meaningful opportunities for children to be exposed to language by being read to and through conversations. The activities encourage parents to ask open- ended questions and invite children to share their opinions. They can also help children learn how to listen to and understand others.