Are you waiting for your child's speech and language skills to blossom, but they just haven't yet?
Does your child have a speech delay or do you have a late talker and you can't wait for that language explosion?
It can be hard waiting for those skills to develop!
So, how can you tell when your child's skills are ready to bloom?
Living in the Pacific Northwest and having grown up in Southern California, has given me a much better appreciation for the seasons. It is so beautiful in the springtime when you see all the flowers blooming and in the fall when you see all the colors changing.
Although spring and winter seem to blend together with the long, cloudy and rainy days of spring out here in the Pacific Northwest, it sure does make you appreciate the sunshine when it comes!
Here’s a funny & true story…..
I remember when my kids were little and it was early springtime. We were getting...
You have probably heard that modeling speech and language at home is an important way to help your child especially if your child has a speech or language delay.
But, did you know that how you model things for your child can make a big difference in your child’s progress?
Did you also know that there are common mistakes parents make that you should avoid when modeling speech and language for your child?
I know we are all extra busy these days, so when you work on things at home, you want to make sure you are doing the right things in the right ways, so your child can make the most progress possible! You also may only have a very limited time to work on things each day, so you want it to count!
You also want to avoid doing the wrong things that may cause a set back in your child’s progress.
Here are some tips to keep in mind when you are modeling speech and language at home so you can get the most out of it!...
When your child has a speech or language delay, it’s easy to focus on all the things your child can’t do yet. This is especially true if you have a toddler who is a late talker, a child who is difficult to understand, or a child who has limited vocabulary.
It can be very frustrating when you see your child struggling and you want your child to make progress, but you just aren’t seeing it.
One thing that I do as a Speech Language Pathologist when I first evaluate and work with a child, is look to see what they CAN do… what are their strengths? I am not just looking at their overall strengths (although this is important too), but I am specifically looking for their strengths in the different areas of communication.
I wanted to share this with you, because as a parent, it can be a tough journey sometimes when your child has a speech or...
As a school-based SLP, I get asked this question quite a bit from parents. I love being asked this question, because it tells me that parents are truly invested in helping their child make progress and doing what they can to support speech therapy at home. It’s so much more important now that we are home even more than ever before!
Often in the schools, we only get to see students once or twice a week for 20 or 30 minutes at a time. Parents are at home with their child way more than that!! This was especially true during the COVID-19 pandemic!
So, I love to be able to provide parents with actionable tips that will be simple, and effective and will help their child make progress.
And… because of the pandemic, this question of “What can I do to help at home?” has become even more relevant, as parents are re-thinking how to supplement the services their...
Happy New Year!
After the pandemic, the beginning of this New Year feels especially exciting! I don’t know about you, but my family and I have goals this year to take a vacation somewhere...anywhere, get together with friends and family again and enjoy some normalcy at some point (hopefully soon) this year!!
Although I know it has been hard for many, I feel very blessed that my family of 5 have all been able to stay home together and spend more time with each other. It’s been challenging, yes - with school at home, work at home, and everything at home, and with 3 kids, it seems like I have not had a spare moment alone these days! As I’ve been sitting here trying to write this, I’ve already had to get up several times (one child spilled something, the dog needed to go out, and another child was hungry). Can any parents out there relate?! :) But, it’s been nice to have the opportunity to bond more as a family, play board...
Did you know you are already doing a lot of things right to help your child with communication?
I know this post is about what NOT to do, but first it's important to realize what you are already doing to help your child.
You might not realize it, but:
You are already doing so many things to help encourage your child’s talking!
The problem is, if you have a “late talker” or a child with some kind of communication disorder or delay, you may need to go above and beyond all the great things you are already doing to help your child overcome this, since it is an area they are struggling in.
Just like for some kids who seem to struggle more than others to learn a sport, or to ride a bike or swim, and may need additional, focused and intensive instruction and help…
kids with communication delays need additional, repeated and focused intervention in order to improve their communication.
*If you have concerns and/or your child is...
Are you overwhelmed with all the toy lists and choices out there for which toys help with speech and language development?
Do you want to know what toy will be most effective for your child with a speech or language delay?
As a Speech Language Pathologist and mom, let me help you!
So, you've probably heard before, the #1 toy for your child is YOU. Which is absolutely true! But! if you want an idea for an actual toy that is a great second best to you that you can actually give your child as a present (and ....if you don't think your child would appreciate you wrapping yourself up as one of his presents), then I have the toy for you!
Whether you have a late talker or need a gift that will actually help your child’s development instead of a toy they will play with for a day or 2 and then throw away...Or… a toy that is so loud and annoying that it will definitely end up in the donation box 2 weeks after Christmas or their birthday.
This toy is my ‘go...
Baby sign language is something you might be considering doing with your toddler who is a late talker, or you might just want to teach your child signs like how to sign please, all done, milk before they are able to say those words.
When my kids were babies, I taught all of them a few signs that really helped them before they could communicate verbally. Although my first and my third born were early talkers, I still used signs with them before they were able to use a variety of words consistently. It was especially helpful for my middle child, who was a late talker. It was so rewarding for him (and me!) when he was able to clearly communicate what he wanted, even before he could say the words.
As a SLP and mom, I knew that using signs actually HELPS kids learn and develop language and eventually use words and talk! That is…. if the signs are introduced and used appropriately.
So, before we go over the signs, let’s go over HOW...
Although I had been a SLP for many years before having kids, my outlook definitely changed after having kids! Having my own kids has made me a better clinician and has given me a deeper understanding of communication disorders from a parent’s point of view.
I have 3 kids who are now 14, 10, and 8, but I remember the early days when my kids were young and things were tough!
Although my firstborn (daughter) was an early talker, I remember being pretty worried (even as a SLP!!) when my middle child (son) was not talking much at 18 months. I was also very pregnant, soon to have a very fussy newborn on my hands as well (he literally ended up crying every night for hours… but, that’s another story….)
Luckily, I happened to be a SLP, so I knew exactly what to do when my toddler was struggling to talk, without doing research and figuring it all out with the zero time I had with 3 little ones… So, I broke out all...
I have been a Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) for 18 years, and have been doing virtual speech therapy for 8 years. I have definitely had challenges and successes along the way, so I know what works and what doesn’t. If your child is struggling with speech therapy online, you are not alone!
It can be challenging for a lot of families. Even though it might not be your first choice for your child, it may be your only choice for direct speech therapy at home right now!
As of this writing, (due to the COVID-19 pandemic) we are all learning a new normal with our lives, our jobs, our kids, and schools -with everything from in person, hybrid, and online learning. Although school and speech therapy looks a lot different these days, I want you to know that there is some good news!
Online speech therapy is not new! Although it may be new to your child and even maybe your SLP, there are tried and true techniques that work well for kids of all ages who are working on...