Serve and Return Examples

Back and forth conversations, otherwise called “serve and return” or “conversational turns” are the best predictor of your toddler’s future academic skills. By providing your toddler with lots of opportunities to engage in conversations with you all day, you are adding to his vocabulary, ability for critical thinking and logic skills, and higher level academic skills. Children who engage in the most serve and return conversations between 18 months and 24 months typically have higher scores in math, reading, and science in third grade.

Here are some examples of Serve and Return conversations and how you can integrate them all day long.

While reading books to your toddler, engage her by asking lots of questions.

Get on your child’s level and ask questions. Offer choices and respond quickly when he voices a choice.