Many people don’t realize that hearing and listening are two very different things. Hearing is a physical process using muscles and nerves, while listening is a learned behavior involving hearing, understanding, and remembering. While our ability to hear matures at a certain age, our listening skills can be improved with practice. You can improve your child’s listening and attention skills by playing simple listening games. Try this game with your child:

I Hear With My Little Ear…

     This game is similar to I Spy, only you listen for sounds instead of looking for objects. Start by saying “I hear with my little ear…” and finish the sentence by describing a sound (I hear something squeaky) or with something you hear around you. Ask your child to mimic the sound when they hear it. Now it’s your child’s turn to ask you! This game can be played anywhere, and can be especially fun while listening to music. This game promotes listening and attention skills, vocal play, and taking turns!
by Caitlin Schafer
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