I read somewhere the other day, on one of the multiple baby bulletins I receive nearly every hour (!), that we are supposed to speak to our infants constantly, employing at least 30,000 words a day of conversation with them. I have found myself telling Olivia about everything I am eating (boy does that make you think about what you put in your mouth), pointing out everything we see on our walks, and on and on! Books are a great tool too, but I find nothing engages Olivia like words coming out of my animated face!
I have also realized the limits to my vocabulary! There's a wonderful website called Free Rice, that teaches you new vocabulary words via snappy little quizzes. For every word you get correct, they donate 20 grains of rice through the United Nations with the goal of banishing world hunger. How cool is that!? And when you think of all the words we still don't know as adults, it becomes even more miraculous that our children learn to speak from scratch.
So far 13,561,441,310 grains of rice have been donated in this game that spans the globe in users. If you have an older child, play the game with them and let them beam with joy at how every right answer equates to helping someone in need. Now, that's prodigious!