Elaborative Conversational Style Helps Your Child In Remembering Better

Posted on February 24, 2017

Photo: flickr

Questions with plenty of ‘who?’. ‘what?’, ‘when?’, ‘where?’ and ‘why?’ encourage children to go into details and such open-ended questions are known as the elaborative style. Past and on-going researches have shown improvement in children’s memory with elaborative style instead of short basic questions that require minimal response effort. More specific studies revealed that parents’ elaborative chat can help their children remember museum visits.

A recent study conducted in a science lesson had test out this area of research as shown in Journal of Experimental Child Psychology. The results provide tentative evidence that conversing with a child in an elaborative way could help them to remember more about their lesson.

Findings from the study indicated that the more elaborative the parents’ questioning were, the more details the children tended to recall via the chatting session. One direct link between parents’ conversational style and children’s later recall was due to the amount of descriptive words being used (such as “was the flashlight blue?”).

Replication of this research is required as it is very preliminary and we cannot deny correlational nature occurring on whether the parents are influencing the children or vice versa. However, it is highly plausible that parents’ conversational style do make an influence.

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Category(s):Child Development

Source material from British Psychological Society


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