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Publisher's Summary

The founder and director of the Thirty Million Words Initiative, Professor Dana Suskind, explains why the most important - and astoundingly simple - thing you can do for your child's future success in life is to talk to him or her, reveals the recent science behind this truth, and outlines precisely how parents can best put it into practice.
The research is in: Academic achievement begins on the first day of life with the first word said by a cooing mother just after delivery.
A study by researchers Betty Hart and Todd Risley in 1995 found that some children heard 30 million fewer words by their fourth birthdays than others. The children who heard more words were better prepared when they entered school. These same kids, when followed into third grade, had bigger vocabularies, were stronger readers, and got higher test scores. This disparity in learning is referred to as the achievement gap.
Professor Dana Suskind, MD, learned of this 30-million word gap in the course of her work as a cochlear implant surgeon at University of Chicago Medical School and began a new research program along with her sister-in-law, Beth Suskind, to find the best ways to bridge that gap. The Thirty Million Word Initiative has developed programs for parents to show the kind of parent-child communication that enables optimal neural development and has tested the programs in and around Chicago across demographic groups. They boil down to getting parents to follow the three Ts:

Tune in to what your child is doing
Talk more to your child using lots of descriptive words
Take turns with your child as you engage in conversation.

©2015 Dana Suskind (P)2015 Penguin Audio
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By B. Webb on 01-16-16

Starts Interesting, gets Repetitive, Then Preachy

Would you try another book from Dana Suskind and/or Kathleen McInerney?

Maybe, but I'd read more reviews before I tried

If you’ve listened to books by Dana Suskind before, how does this one compare?


Have you listened to any of Kathleen McInerney’s other performances before? How does this one compare?


Do you think Thirty Million Words needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

no, it covered the subject well, then got too repetitive

Any additional comments?

I bought this book to learn more about what I could be doing to help my children grow mentally, and there are some good thoughts. Good thing I'd been doing some of the 'right' things, as they are older than three now, but I can still apply the lessons. This book definitely started out interesting and I definitely learned a few things.

About half way through it starts to get a little repetitive, then gets preachy with the 'call to action' stuff... I could have stopped about 2/3 of the way through and gotten all I needed out of it. But I'm glad I finished it.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Jesusa H. Chua on 01-10-16

Good but too long for content

Perhaps I got irritated with the reader, or maybe not... The parts are beneficial and offered helpful info but the latter speaks of macro applications and society wide changes that are not useful for parent readers -- noble, but not very helpful.
A good book to go through nonetheless, although several solid journal article would have covered the same content, but still a good use of audible credit.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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