Research has shown that having strong language skills is crucial to a boy’s reading performance, but most boys have weaker language skills upon entering school than girls.  For that reason, the Science Daily article “Talking Seriously with Children is Good for Their Language Proficiency” is of particular interest to the parents of young boys.  Lotte Henrichs, a Dutch researcher, asserts that the way that adults engage with children aged three to six years old affects how well those children acquire language.

Henrichs believes that parents need to help their children learn academic language, the language that teachers use and expect from their students.  Academic language starts in nursery school.  Parents help their children by “reading to them, telling them stories, and holding conversations about interesting subjects.”  Having experience with this academic language helps them “to understand instructions and to demonstrate their knowledge in an efficient manner.”