8 Ways To Get Your Child To Speak

communication
Many of you have been interested in how to stimulate more speech from your toddlers so I thought I would share a few tricks I use as a speech therapist. Most often children just need a little more incentive to get them talking so I like to use what is known to speech therapists as “Communicative Temptations.”

There are many ways of “tempting” your child to speak. Here are 8 Communicative Temptations I have found helpful in therapy. After getting the idea of how this works, I’m sure you will be able to come up with some of your own “temptations”. If you do and they seem to work for you, please share them with us.

1. Eat something your child loves in their presence with out offering them any. When your child indicates that they would like some, model a more advanced way for them to make the request, whether it is using a sign, a word or a simple phrase. For example, if your child points and grunts to the candy, model the sign for candy then wait and see if your child will imitate the sign candy. If your child simply keeps pointing and grunting take his/her hand and help him make the sign for candy then reward him/her with the candy.

2. Play with something your child loves but don’t offer to share.
For instance if your child loves playing with playdough and wants to participate in the fun, you could model the /p/ sound for “please” or “play,” or you could model the signs for please or play. If your child can already say one word model a two word phrase for him/her to imitate like, “play please.”

3. At meal time and snack time give your child bite size portions, rather than dishing up a whole serving for them, then wait for them to request more. If no attempt is made model the sign “more,” help them make the sign, or model the /m/ sound for them to imitate.

4. Limit your child’s access to things like the t.v., toys, food, or going outside. Set it up so they have to make a request or ask for help to access these things. You may accomplish this by putting favorite things up high or locked up.

5. Play turn-taking games such as rolling the ball back and forth, or pushing a car back and forth. Once your child expects another turn hold the car or ball and wait. Look at him/her expectantly if no sign or verbal request is made, model an appropriate request such as the sign for “ball,” the /b/ sound, the word “ball” or “ball please”…

6. Use tight containers to store things in. When your child indicates he/she wants a cookie you might hand him/her the cookie jar (tightly sealed of course), when he/she can’t open it and hands it back to you make him/her sign open or help.

7. Use wind up toys or other toys that are difficult for kids to operate on their own. Wind up a wind-up toy your child gets a kick out of then hand it to them when they want a turn, wait for them to request help by using the sign or the word to operate the toy.

8. Blow bubbles then screw the lid on tightly and hand it back to your child for their turn. Wait for them to request help with a a sign or a word. Model the sign or word if necessary.

Using these little tricks that require your child to communicate will teach your child the power of communication. They will learn very quickly that when they sign or say “out” they can go outside but if they simply cry by the door nothing happens. It is important to be quick with your reinforcement so your child will make the connection easily, for example if you are teaching your child to request “more cookie” be sure to have that cookie ready to put in their darling little hands right away. When your child points and grunts, or tantrums pay no attention at all, or be sure to explain that you don’t understand what they want even when you do. Then model an appropriate way to make the request. Little tricks like these have helped me get most non-verbal children to start communicating. And of course these things need to be done in patience and love. When your child sees that he/she can communicate their wants/needs effectively, it will give them added confidence that will help them in the continuing process of language development.


Heidi - Mommy Speech Therapy Heidi Hanks, M.S.CCC-SLP has been a practicing Speech-Language Pathologist since 2000. She graduated from Utah State University where she completed both her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. She began her career in early intervention and eventually started her own private practice where she has worked primarily with pre-K through school age kids. She is the founder of Little Bee Speech, and is currently developing apps for speech and language. Heidi lives in Utah with her husband and 4 children.


49 Responses to “8 Ways To Get Your Child To Speak”

  1. sheri says:

    Hi there! I love your sight and your suggestions. My son has been in speech for most of his life- in the beginning for feeding help and then starting just after a year for more feeding help and speech….I do many of the things you suggest, but I was wondering what if any different things you would suggest for a child suspected to have a motor planning speech issue such as apraxia…..Sometimes I get frustrated (as I know he does) because we practice and practice and the progress in slower than slow…. Sometimes if he wants more and I ask him to say more (he also uses signs) all he can get out is ma….never just m, and often its another sound such as Da….I usually know when I can push him to try again and when its jsut going to downward spiral….anyways, I was just wondering your thoughts….

  2. Heidi says:

    Sheri,

    I understand your frustration. When a child has a motor planning disorder such as apraxia the progress can be very slow. Have faith and remember that repetition is the key with motor planning disorders. It is the multiple repetitions that helps create the muschle memory they need. Just keep trying and remember to celebrate every success along the way no matter how small it may be.

  3. CC says:

    This article is great! I love all of these communication temptation ideas. I am going to write a short post telling others to read this!

    PS–thanks so much for adding me to your blogroll :)

  4. Heidi says:

    CC,

    Thanks for your comments! It’s always great to get in touch with fellow SLPs. I enjoyed your blog, it’s got so much fun stuff! I absolutely love the super hero theme.. I’ve always considered myself Wonder Woman too :) Keep up the great work!

    -Heidi

  5. Jenny says:

    Thanks to CC’s blog, I found my way to your blog. I have a son who is very delayed in speech, so I’m always looking for ideas to try. I love these you have mentioned and I’m going to do a post tonight linking to these. Thanks and I really look forward to reading more on your blog!

  6. Babychaser says:

    Hi Heidi,

    I’ve used a number of these suggestions and my 15 month old is an avid signer! Still no words (none that I have heard anyway… aparently mommy and daddy have been heard by others a couple times).

    One day about a month ago DS and I were at one of my last OB appointments (DD was born a week and a half ago). DS loves to look at a picture of kids with a dog when we are in the waiting room. He wanted to stand on the chair next to me to look at it, but I had alread helped him up several times and he had gotten down again. I’d worked on the sign for please for a while, but he had never gotten it. As I talked to another patient, he was asking (pointing to the chair) to get up. I told him he needed to say please first and went back to talking (knowing he wouldn’t do it). A minute later he was getting my attention and signing please. Of course he could have anything he wanted at that point! :)

    Just thought I’d share my story of tempting communication success! :)

    I’m going to have to point my blog readers (many of whom have toddlers themselves) your way sometime soon! :)

    Thanks!

  7. Angela says:

    I found your website by googling the T&A procedure. My son is now in speech therapy (he turned three this month) and is now facing the T&A. I’m a nervous wreck about it. Also because I was so excited about this whole speech therapy thing. I’ll be checking in and commenting more. Thanks.

  8. Starr says:

    Just found your blog! I am a stay at home mommy/part-time SLP as well. Enjoy your site.

  9. Erika says:

    These suggestions have worked wonders in my household!!! I started with signs at 2 years old, moved to just the first sound like /p/ for please or /m/ for more, and right on through to words or word approximations. I am now trying my hardest to get two word phrases out of my 2 1/2 year old, but it is hard for him. Practice, practice, practice and a ton of patience and I know it will pay off. This site is wonderful!

  10. Danette says:

    I found this post via 5 Minutes for Special Needs in a post by CC, these are great suggestions!

  11. Cristine says:

    I really enjoyed your 8 tricks! It is almost like you blackmail them to speak. If they want something, they are going to have to ask for it. These are awesome methods. I will definitely be sharing them on our website!

  12. Magan Chen says:

    Thank you for your post about communication temptations. I like your explanations and examples. I’m sure parents will be inspired to take a more proactive role, and in the process, have lots of fun too!

    I will be sharing your blog with my therapy clients (and colleagues) here in Singapore :)

  13. Katie says:

    Thank you for these ideas! This is how I have gotten my two year old twins to start communicating. I started at 8 months with giving them a bite or two and doing hand over hand signing for more. It took several months to get the idea, but once they got it, they started figuring out what communication was and learning other signs. Like a pp, my children might have apraxia and it is a long battle. Some days they can’t say much when asked and you just have to take anything you can get but other days they surprise you! I had been feeling like I was slacking with working with them lately, but reading this made me realize I still do therapy with them all day every day! This is my life, but after many, many, many repetitions it does start to sink it! Thanks for this post!

  14. lagna says:

    Hi, I find your ideas very encouraging. My 3 year old son has been diagnosed with ASD. Apart from all other trainings, he is also into Speech therapy. my problem is he wont look up to see the sign model i make. what do i do? he keeps on grunting and tugging till he accomplishes what he wants. his fidgety behavior and hypecactivity also serves as a deterrent. can you suggest something here?

    • Heidi says:

      Hi Lagna,

      When he won’t look at you to see the sign model take his hands and help him make the sign. Eventually he will start to get the idea that he has to do something before he will get anything.

      Hope that helps!
      Heidi

  15. devon says:

    I love the ideas your mention here. I have been doing a lot of signing with my 15 month old son and he has been using them a lot. The problem is, he does not even attempt to use speech sounds at all as he seems to have figured out that if he signs he gets what he needs. Any suggestions?

    • Heidi says:

      Hi Devon,

      Just make sure every time you use a sign you pair it with a word. Eventually kids figure out that speaking is easier than signing and they drop the sign. In the meantime try some sound exploration activities to see if you can get him to start making more sounds. You may try popping bubbles in the bathtub while saying the /p/ sound every time you pop a bubble. Or you may try rolling a ball back and forth saying the /b/ sound every time you catch the ball or roll the ball. Be creative, I’m sure you can find lots of ways to introduce simple sounds. The secret to success is consistency paired with lots and lots of repetition.

      Best of luck!
      Heidi

  16. Dinesh says:

    Hi,
    All those tips were gud enough to make a kid talk. We all know them,but just need to brush them up to implement on our kid/s.

  17. Portia says:

    All these tips are good. My child is very lazy to talk, he can make signs of things he wants. It is difficult for me to get him to pronounce words properly, all he does is to utter unclear words. How do i teach him to talk properly?

    • Heidi says:

      Hi Portia,

      I would recommend you contact a speech pathologist for an evaluation. They can help you identify specifically which sounds your son is not saying that he should be saying based on his age. Then they can help you set goals and outline ways to teach him the sounds he needs to learn. If you do not have access to a speech pathologist you may want to try the “Articulation Screener” I have provided on mommy speech therapy to help you identify which sounds he should be saying. Then you may want to use the “Articulation Goal Tracker” to set goals and track progress of the sounds you are working on. Reading “The Process of Articulation Therapy” will also help you as you outline your goals. You can also use the worksheets page for practice materials. If you have an iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch you may also be interested in “Articulation Station” for teaching and practicing sounds. If you buy all the sounds in “Articulation Station” you can even add your own pictures and words to the program to make it more personal to you and your son. Using words like names of family members or favorite tv shows. I hope this gives you a few ideas.

      All the best!
      Heidi

  18. Anindita India says:

    My son is about to be 4 in July but cant speak anything meaningful..whenever i ask something he can show or say reply but he cant communicate with us thru words rather u can say he shows very much anger when trying to make him speak….even he haven’t spoke mom or dad yet…how to get rid of it

    • Heidi says:

      Hi Anindita,

      It sounds like your son has an expressive language delay. I would recommend you take him to see a speech language pathologist for an evaluation. They will be able to help you understand what may be causing the delay as well as set up a plan for improving his communication.

      I hope this helps!
      Heidi

  19. Theresa Cohen says:

    My son is 16 months old. He babbles all the time but we don’t know what he is saying and he will occasionally repeat words we say. When it comes to asking for things and saying simple words like hi, bye, more, eat, cup, out, up, etc. he will not say them. He doesn’t sign either. He just finally started waving bye. I like your ideas and will try them. Since he does babble should I bother signing or just teach to say the word?
    Also, when we are playing and he gets excited, he has started to bite my husband and I. Is this because he is not using his words yet? I am afraid he will bite another child.
    Thank you for your help.

    • Heidi says:

      Hi Theresa,

      I would recommend you teach him signs, but always say the word with the sign. The reason I say this is you will be so happy when he signs his first word and you can actually understand him even if he hasn’t learned to say the word clearly enough yet to be understood. Saying the word with the sign will provide the verbal models he needs to learn to say the word verbally when he is ready. The other reason I recommend this is because you can’t make him say a word but you can take his hands and make him sign a word when you are teaching him that he has to do something in order to get something. You are teaching him communicative intent. Once he learns this he will experience the power communication gives him and he will be more motivated to try new words. Check out my post, “Sign Language with your Infant and Toddler” for more ideas.

      The biting could just be a playful thing, make sure you respond appropriately letting him know that it hurts when he bites you and that it is not ok. If he continues to do it you may want to decide on a consequence for when he bites. On the other hand the biting could also be a sensory thing. Meaning he may like the sensory input he gets when he bites down on things. If this is the case you may want to provide appropriate things for him to chew on. When he bites you, tell him that biting people is not ok because it huts them but he can bite on this “chewy tube” (or whatever you have selected for him to bite on) and then hand him the object you have selected.

      I hope this help! All the best!
      Heidi

  20. Leslie says:

    Hi!
    My child is almost 3 tears old and all he talks us baby talk and gibberish. He saids words like, she, no, what, stop,one, two,UNO, dos, dame, mine, bye, hi. But that’s about it. Gopher would have a full conversation with you likeif he was really being understood.
    I don’t know what to do. I have try it all. He would not speak… Please help me.. FYI I am the baby’s nanny, but the mom is putting everything on me. I want to help him be able to speak.

    • April says:

      Hi Leslie,

      Sorry for the delay in response. By the age of 3 most children should be able to have a word for almost everything and will use 3-4 words to talk about and ask for things. If you have concerns that the child you are caring for is having a hard time communicating you should express these concerns to your employer, the child’s mother, and talk to her about having the child evaluated by a speech language pathologist. If the child does have a language delay, it is not appropriate to have you address this delay on your own. To help encourage the child’s language development there are some things that you can do when you’re with the child. You can find some excellent suggestions on the American Speech and Hearing Association’s website: http://www.asha.org/public/speech/development/23.htm

      Good luck!

  21. Linda says:

    My son is 22 months old and doesn’t speak very much… I am starting to get worried… Every once in a while he spat out a full sentence or say words like yummy chicken or lasagna please… But this is very rare…. His father and I are word dyslexic… Wondering if its a factor????…..

    • Linda says:

      Usually he just grunts for things and I try to make him tell me what he wants…. He also tries to talk to his grandparents and he just make noises while trying to tell them with his fingers…

      • Nicole says:

        My son is 2 and does the same thing plus he tries to say words thst start with the letter b and doesnt get the full word out of his mouth. Every once in a while it will sound like down or eapple . I think he is behind with children his age. Even younger children were talking more than he was. It is so hard for me not to be able to communicate with my son. I am going to try using the techniques that are on this website. Thank you!

    • April says:

      Hi Linda,
      Dyslexia is a type of language-based learning disability and signs and symptoms can include a child having difficulty expressing themselves clearly and learning new vocabulary. Learning disabilities can be hereditary, and are often related to specific language problems. I would follow your gut instinct. If you are concerned, have your child evaluated by a speech-language therapist. Early identification of potential language delays can help with the intervention in the long run. Good luck!

  22. leena says:

    hello mam,
    My son is 4 years old. he speaks less than other children of his age. doctor says he has some symtomps of autism. he speaks small words sometimes correctly n sometimes not. sometimes he speaks 3-4 small lines at stretch. he doesnot take command oftenly. i know he is intelligent.i know he will learn all things sooner. can u suggest how to make him speak more.if he is not interested, he will not speak.hope 2 hear 4m u soon.

    • April says:

      Hi Leena,
      Sorry for the delay in response. If your doctor has some concerns about your child having autism, I would suggest having him evaluated by a speech language pathologist. Autism not only can affect a child’s receptive (what they understand) and expressive (what they’re able to express) language skills, but it can affect their social communication as well. Early identification and intervention is key in helping children with autism progress. Like you said in your comment, if your child is not interested, he will not speak. Speech therapy for a child with autism will take into consideration the child’s behavior, the functions of that behavior, and what is motivating/rewarding to that child. In the meantime, continue trying to engage your child and model good language and social communication skills for him. You can help expand vocabulary and the length of your child’ s utterances by reading, singing, talking about what you are doing and where you are going, and saying rhymes. Read books that have a simple plot, and talk about the story line with your child. Help your child to retell the story or act it out with props and dress-up clothes. Tell him or her your favorite part of the story and ask for his or her favorite part, etc. These are just a few ideas, but we wish you the best of luck as you move forward with your son.

  23. Bonnie says:

    Dear Heidi,
    I think your web sight is awesome it really helps me allot and it’s nice to know there are allot of other mothers out there having issues with there child talking, and not feeling so occword about it when people look at you like what’s the matter with your kid.
    My daughter is 2 1/2 and has had nothing been struggling with back to back ear infections and she lost some hearing, and due to that it’s hard for her to communicate when she can’t hear the words processed the correct way to her, and she drop’s the letters off what she can’t say. Is there a way much easier way I could teach her,

    She does attend pr-school and the teachers do have a hard time understanding her so there kinda frustrated as well as my daughter gets frustrated and sometimes she will throw tantrum’s, says no, hit’s out is this normal for behaviors like this. She stars on the 25th for speech and language, and we do work threw birth to 3.

    • April says:

      Hi Bonnie,
      Thank you for your kind comment, and I apologize for the delay in response. I’m sorry to hear that your daughter is struggling. She has been through a lot. Due to her hearing loss, it is not surprising to me that she is having a hard time communicating. It can also be common for children to drop the final sounds of words if they cannot hear them. You’ll want to make sure that you speak with an audiologist to confirm how severe her hearing loss is, and to see if you would need to utilize any type of hearing aid or personal sound system. Once you can confirm that she can hear those sounds properly, you’ll be able to address making sure she says those final sounds in her speech. Difficult behaviors can manifest themselves in children who have hearing loss and experience frustration from communication breakdown. I think you are doing the right thing by having her start speech therapy. A licensed speech therapist will be able to address how to handle communication breakdown and might help her learn some strategies for helping her communicate more effectively. Good luck! It can feel overwhelming as a parent, but it sounds like you are on the right path to getting her the help she needs.

  24. Ritu says:

    Dear Heidi,
    I have a 27 month old baby girl and she is speaking a lot of words but no sentences. Whenever we encourage her to speak or read a book with us she tends to ignore us or is adamant about doing things her way or does not repeat what we want her to do. Can you suggest as to how I could get her undivided attention even for few minutes?

    Thanks.

    • April says:

      Hi Ritu,
      It is difficult to get any toddler’s undivided attention for more then a few minutes. Keep trying to engage her and provide a language rich environment for her. Make sure she has ready access to books and literature and that she can pick them up herself to flip through pages or play with when she wants. Kids this age tend to have skills on a wide spectrum. It’s good that she can speak a lot of words. Usually we say that about 50 words by age 2 is normal, and that the vocabulary will continue to increase dramatically after that. Model good, simple sentences for her and model putting two of her vocabulary words together while you’re playing with her i.e. “toy up”, while you are moving her toy up, or “yellow duck” when showing her a toy. If after awhile you feel that your daughter is still not putting words together to form simple phrases or sentences even after you have tried to intervene at home, consider contacting a speech language pathologist to have her evaluated for your concerns with her language. Good luck!

  25. Shobana says:

    Hi,

    I just came across your site.. It was nice… My son is 4yrs and he is coming under GDD. How can I help my son to bring his speech.
    He is making sounds only, no letters or words………..

    Thanks
    Shobana

    • April says:

      Hi Shobana,
      I’m sorry to hear about your son’s delay. I would really recommend that you contact a qualified speech language pathologist in your area so that they may be able to assess your child to determine what course of treatment would be most beneficial to him. Best of luck!

  26. Amit says:

    Hi,

    I want to first thank you as the tips on your web helped us to get our son 3 yrs and 4 months to talk more he can now ask if he wants something by saying papa or mommy give me yougurt ? Or if he needs help he will ask papa help me. He knows and can say the name of all planets different shapes or colours he can write upto 20 and sign upto 100 he makes eye contact with us but just recently he went to his paediatrician where he didn’t make eye contact and kept crying as he could understand from his previous experience if he will get a needle this time so doctor asked us to get him checked for autism as he had a nagging feeling about it we are terrified and don’t know what to do please help

    • April says:

      Hi Amit,
      I’m sorry. I know that autism can be a very scary topic of discussion to have with your doctor. Your son sounds very smart, and it sounds like you have been working with him very hard to help increase his communication skills. While many people think of lack of eye contact as a classic sign or symptom of autism in young children, it is typically not the only thing pediatricians will look for when they are considering whether or not a child is displaying signs of autism. Pediatricians should consider the child’s overall receptive and expressive language skills, their social skills and engage in communication with family and peers, and any repetitive or abnormal types of movements/behaviors that the child engages in for stimulation. You are the best advocate for your child; if you feel that your pediatrician is way off base then you can always seek out a second opinion. However, if you feel that it might be worth looking into, you may want to go through some of the various assessments that doctors and other professionals use to diagnose autism. Autism is a spectrum disorder, so there is a wide range of abilities that children will exhibit from Asperger’s and very high-functioning forms of autism, down to very low-functioning autism. The most important thing about children diagnosed with autism is it seems they can make great improvements with their communication and life skills once they receive treatment. Early diagnosis is very important though. I know it can seem scary, and it is a very big decision. Speak with your family, speak with your doctor, and decide what you think is best for your son. Good luck! I wish you the best with this journey your on with your son’s communication and development.

  27. Arpita says:

    Hi,

    My daughter is 20 months old. We are Indian but stay in Germany so naturally we face little bit language issue. But, at home we speak our mother tongue. My daughter understands everything what we say and can speak few words too. Yea speaks a lot but her own language which we are not able to understand, and signs and lead us if she wants something. But, somehow we feel that sometime when we are teaching her some new words or sounds, she constantly ignores us. If she likes that particular word or sound then she promptly catches it and imitates but if not then ignores or shouts like if she is showing she is not interested… I am trying to hard to make her speak :( i do what she likes and then try to teach but sometimes it goes so good and most of the time failure :( please suggest me something….

    • April says:

      Hi Arpita,
      Working with a child in a bilingual environment can present some challenges. Speaking two languages is like any other skill. To do it well, children need lots of practice, which parents can help provide. Without practice, it may be difficult for children to understand or talk to people in both languages. It sounds like your daughter has age-appropriate receptive language–she seems to be understanding what you say, and she can follow directions. Expressive language skills can lag behind receptive language skills a bit, we usually understand more then we are able to express, however there are some typical guidelines we use when we try to determine our if our young children are using appropriate language skills. By the age of 2, children should be able to say about 50 words and should be combining words into about 2-3 word phrases. The best thing you can do is to provide a language rich environment for your daughter at home: talk, sing, read, and play using lots of language. She might not imitate everything you say right away, but reward her for when she does attempt to use good language. If you feel that she is still not making adequate enough progress, and her lack of communication skills is frustrating for her, consider consulting a speech-language pathologist. If there is a language delay, a trained SLP will be able to provide therapy to help address your daughters’ needs. Good luck!

  28. Lizzy says:

    Hi,

    My daughter is 4 and half years old. She has excellent memory. She know how to pronuce words correctly. She is too good with spellings. She can spell more than 100 words. She sings Hymns of two paragraphs. Very good with indentifying anything and everything. My Concern is when she wants to communicate with us, she is unable to make sentences. She speaks or asks in two words, like ‘mummy play’ ‘put tv’ etc. she does not speak to anyone in her preschool. She is not able to put across her ideas, thoughts. She is not able to express herself. How can i help her? What do i need to do? Am really confused.

    • Heidi says:

      Hi Lizzy.

      It sounds like it is time for you to contact a Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) in your area for an evaluation. Your daughter sounds very bright indeed, but the fact that she is only talking in two word phrases at her age is a concern. If you are in the United States you can go the the ASHA website to find an SLP near you. Good luck!

  29. Abu Rafay says:

    Hello Heidi,

    That’s great idea, thanks for the tips.. i got one boy 4yrs and little one is 2 years for the elder one we are taking speech therapy due to he is not talking.

    For the Younger one we can apply this ideas that’s great thanks…

    best wishes and be safe Good Luck!

  30. Amarine says:

    Hi,

    We exposed our daughter to Spanish only at home and by the time she was four, she was bilingual.
    We did the same with our 28 month son. However, we noticed that he was falling behind in his expressive and receptive speech. We took him for an evaluation and he is definetely delayed.
    It was very hard to find a SLP in Spanish. Once I found one (the one who tested him) her Spanish was so poor, she had to ask the receptionist to translate.
    What should I do now? Should I find one in English? Should we start speaking to him in English? His father is from Spain and I am from Peru. What will be the outcome of this language issue?
    Please, tell us if you had any experience with foreign toddlers
    Thanks a lot!

    • Heidi says:

      Hi Amarine.

      I have not had a lot of experience serving bilingual children. I do know there are a lot of very talented bilingual SLP’s out there that would be so happy to help you. If you are not happy with the SLP your son is seeing I would continue your search. I’m sure you will find one. Try the ASHA database of Speech professionals, or you may want to try Speech Buddies Connect, another resource for finding qualified speech professionals.

  31. Lekshmi says:

    Hi Heidi,

    My son is 4 years old.He was diagnosed with PDD NOS DSM IV criteria at 2.5 years.We are giving him speech therapy,occupational therapy and behavioral therapy since then.
    He has improved a lot.Present situation is he has the understanding capability of 3.5 year old child,responds to all our commands,does any activities given to him like solving puzzles,starting writing numbers,alphabets,etc,excellent memory,but no speech.He points to objects of his need,he has non verbal imitation and few oral imitation.He just imitates “aa” “ee” sounds and word”eyes”.
    I’m not sure how I can help him speak.I was trying very hard for the last 1.5 years,but he is showing very slow progress.Even speech therapist is amazed at why he’s not able to speak even with good eye-contact and enough of attention.We are sending him to nursery as well,teachers say he plays ok with kids,though not that great interaction.We are in India and we are planning to move to UK for better speech therapists.
    Could you please tell me if that helps.He normally adjusts at any environment and he was staying in UK until 2.5 years as well.

    • Heidi says:

      Hi Lekshmi.

      It sounds like you have come a long way in the last year and a half. I’m sure a good speech therapy treatment program with a good speech therapist would help a lot. What I would look for is a Speech Pathologist who will help you implement a communication program with him. Ultimately he needs to be able to communicate effectively whether that means with assisted technology, a picture communication system or sign language until he begins speaking. Look for someone that can work closely with you to help you learn how to implement such a system at home. Establishing a good means of communication for him will open up his world and in most cases lead to some level of verbal communication.

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