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The importance of turn-taking


What is Turn-Taking and why is it important?


Turn-taking is the foundation for interacting with others, playing games and having a conversation. Taking turns or going back and forth between you and your child teaches your child that each person takes a turn in the interaction.


It can be a verbal or non-verbal exchange depending on how old your child is. It is important to pause and give your child a chance to take a turn, even if it is a non-verbal turn.


Examples of turn taking at different ages while playing at a water table:


For a 12-month old that has limited language, they will have more non-verbal exchanges while they are building their verbal language. While you’re playing at a water table with your child, you pause after saying “fill the bucket” and then your child takes their turn and fills the bucket with water.


An example of a verbal exchange with a two year old is when you say “fill the bucket with ______” and your child says “water!”


An example of a verbal exchange with a three year old would be, You say “After we fill the bucket with water, what should we do?” and your child says “pour it out!”


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