Let’s Talk About Super Special Kids & Cake Podcast [Episode 005 / Segment: Super Special Topic]
In the simplest of terms, speech is the way in which a person produces and pronounces language.
For some special children however, all this talking can just seem like a whole lot of noise that they cannot decipher. When parents ask me for tips on how to overcome this issue, one of the things I suggest is to introduce other things such as an image of an object or a photograph of a person or place that can be used to point to. You could also create a table with words on that your child can point to and come to recognise over time.
The great thing about all of these suggestions is that your child can begin to understand that these too are a means of communication. This is referred to as the speech insight and hopefully over time, these tools will make things clearer for your child. A wonderful thing that I’ve seen happen in some cases is that these alternative means of communication have led to a child speaking on their own.
Good modelling is also very important. For example, if a child is saying “It’s a trismas tree!” instead of ‘Christmas tree’, make sure that in your response, you use the correct word “Yes, you’re right. It is a Christmas tree”. In this way you are reinforcing the correct model and promoting the correct use of words and language. Similarly, even though your child may not be at a level where they fully understand it; parents should always speak in full sentences as this will benefit your child in the long run.
A further discussion related to the above can also be heard over on my podcast: Episode 5: ‘The Chosen Ones’.