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It has been said that one picture is worth a thousand words.  And every time we talk, “our non-verbal clues are giving a clear picture of what we’re really thinking.”

 Infants and toddlers (children under the age of 3) may be unable to speak to you, but this doesn’t stop them from communicating.  Most communication will be done through direct touch like cuddling and touching.  Whenever you notice a baby or toddler crying or yelling, try holding or cuddling them to reassure them.

Dictionary says that non-verbal cues include “all the communication between people and children that do not have a direct verbal translation.”  They are “body movements, body orientation, nuances of the voice, facial expressions, details of dress, and choice and movement of objects that communicate.”

Examples of non–verbal communication include shaking hands, patting the back, hugging, pushing, or other kinds of touch.   But we also use nonverbal symbols: facial expressions, gestures, and posture, as well as voice qualities such as intonation (the rise and fall of our voice), pitch, and volume.

NOTE: We usually use nonverbal symbols without being aware of them.   70% comes from your body signs, 23% from your voice and 7% from your words.


  1. Aesthetic – involves creative expression such as art, music, dance, theater.
  2. Physical – involves bodily movements used during social interactions such as smile, frown and wink.
  3. Signs – includes any signal that are used or displayed to communicate a message or that have a special meaning.
  4. Symbols – are any material objects that promote social status such as jewelry, cars and clothing.

Which of these 4 would be #1?  (See answer at end)

All of these nonverbal factors play a major role in our spoken communications

*When we speak and write, we use verbal symbols – words – to represent things (“That moon was so orange last night”); people (“He looked sharp in his blue suit!”); ideas (“That idea to take a deck of cards and create a baseball game is neat!”); and feelings (“I certainly was hurt and down in the dumps all night after what you said to me!”)

Answer: Physical


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