Parents often ask me how they can be helping their child with their speech/language skills. Working on speech and language skills doesn't have to be hard or time consuming. Every day activities are an opportunity for your child to learn new language. Here are 3 practical tips to expand your child's language skills during normal daily tasks:
1) It seems simple, but TALK TO YOUR CHILD. As your driving in the car, during meal times, bath time, while dressing them, talk about what your'e doing or what you're seeing. Elaborate on the things around them. For example, if your walking down the street and see a dog, you can say, "Look at that dog. He's a big dog. That dog is barking." With 3 simple sentences, you've just taught your child new descriptive words. Here is another example, during meals you can say, "Here's a bite of carrot. Yummy Carrot. The carrot is orange." You may feel repetitive, but your child is learning so many new words!
2) Every now and then, pause and give your child an opportunity to interact. Here's what I mean. If it's time to wash their hands, lather their hands in soap, but pause before you turn on the water. Give them an opportunity to notice something needs to be done and request for you to turn on the water. If you're giving them bites of food, pause before the next bite, and see if they will indicate to you they want more.
3) Give them 2 choices. If you know they are interested in an item. Hold up the item and another item you know they aren't interested in and given them a choice between the two. Example, "Do you want the block or the book?" "Do you want the milk or the spoon?". Give them an opportunity to communicate their wants.
Again, teaching your child new speech and language skills doesn't have to be time consuming. They are constantly learning. Teach them new words and language during everyday activities.
If your child is struggling with their speech/language skills or you are concerned they are behind, contact us today for a speech/language assessment or find a Speech Language Pathologist in your area. We are located in Lubbock, Texas and offer pediatric speech/language therapy along with feeding therapy. Little Ones, Infant and Pediatric Therapy is located at 8004 Abbeville Ave in Lubbock TX. Give us a call at (806) 370-0851 to schedule your appointment.