Why You Should Use Sign Language to Help Your Late Talker

Why You Should Use Sign Language to Help Your Late Talker

Late Talkers, Sign Language
Sign language is a powerful tool for helping young children who are late to talk and have difficulty understand others to communicate. In fact, the research tells us that sign language is not only easier than spoken language, it actually helps facilitate the emergence of verbal communication in children with language difficulties. This is contrary to what is logical. You wouldn’t be blamed for thinking that teaching a child to sign would replace the need for verbal language, preventing it from emerging. In actuality, what we find is the opposite, that children who learn to sign talk sooner. It also helps children develop their understanding of language a whole lot faster. Sign language is still language. For children who are really struggling with the verbal and auditory processing components of…
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The Importance of Verbs and Other Word Types

The Importance of Verbs and Other Word Types

Language, Language Development Series, Late Talkers
A couple of weeks ago I uploaded a post called How Many Words Should My Child Be Saying? In this post I outlined the number of words children should have by particular ages, and why it’s important to monitor the quantity of your child’s vocabulary. What I didn’t really talk about, however, was the importance of variety within a child’s vocabulary. Most children’s earliest words are nouns, or the names of objects, people and places (e.g. Mum, dad, car, train, etc.). Once they begin to acquire more and more words, however, they begin to acquire new word types, like verbs (e.g. jump, run, go), descriptive words (e.g. yucky, yummy, wet, dirty), location words (e.g. up, down, there) and more. These words are important for effective communication, as there’s only so much information…
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How Many Words Should My Child Be Saying?

How Many Words Should My Child Be Saying?

Language, Language Development Series, Late Talkers
Probably the most common question I am asked by parents is how many words should their child be saying at a given age. A lack of words is one of the earliest warning signs for parents, that their child’s communication is not developing typically. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of different figures floating around. While I covered broader communication development in my Early Language Development Series, I wanted to cover vocabulary acquisition specifically, for this reason. Age Average Number of Words Minimum Number of Words 12 months 1 15 months 10 1 18 months 50 5-15 24 months 200-300 50 The above table breaks down early vocabulary down into ages, along with the average number of words most children will have and the minimum number of words they must have to be considered…
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What Speech Errors are Never Age Appropriate?

What Speech Errors are Never Age Appropriate?

Speech and Articulation
Speech sounds develop slowly, as a child’s ability to coordinate and produce sounds develop. Because of this, there are often a lot of errors that are age appropriate for little ones and no cause for concern (check out our handy guide to speech sound development). There are, however, some speech errors that do not occur at any stage in typical speech sound development, and are red flags for a more serious speech disorder. In general, we don’t begin treating a child for speech difficulties until they are at least three years of age. Children under three are still in the early stages of learning to communicate, and the sounds they can and can’t use at this age can be pretty all over the place. Once a child turns three, however,…
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The 7 Stages of Speech Therapy

The 7 Stages of Speech Therapy

Speech and Articulation
A very common communication difficulty we see here at Child's Play are speech sound errors. Children who experience difficulty with their speech production have trouble using the correct sounds (e.g. replacing "k" with "t", like "tat" for "cat"). There are a number of different types of speech delays and disorders, and intervention for each will look slightly different based on their underlying issue. For the most part, however, intervention will follow the same hierarchical approach.. Why this approach? Unfortunately, just because a child can say a target sound, does not mean they can use in within their everyday conversation. Speech is habitual and mostly automatic, and for this reason it is very difficult for a child to change the sound patterns they use. This is why a gradual approach involving small…
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