My little one is finally speaking. We are so happy. Cole recently turned 3 years old and hasn’t been speaking very for very long. Well at least not anything that makes sense. I panicked alot, and then I started listening to my gut, and I’m so glad I did.
Cole had reached all of his milestones unbelievably quickly. He started sitting around 4 months, started crawling at 5 months and started walking the day he turned 11 months. His teeth also came out quite quickly. I guess its obvious why I had high expectations for his speech. He turned 2 years old, and he wasn’t saying anything that made sense yet. He was speaking alot of giberish. While it sounded all cute, I was slowly beginning to panic.
Why we panicked
His brother Liam started speaking just before 2 years old and I was comparing him to his brother all the time. That was my first mistake. No two children are the same and it took a while for me to finally realize that.
Anyway, Cole had always been home with our nanny. He hadn’t been to school and I feel he lacked communication and interaction and this might have impacted his speech. At 2 years and 5 months, he started creche. The first month of creche was really tough as it was a huge adjustment for him. After about two and a half months, he started settling in nicely and had a made a small amount of progress in his speech.
We took him for an evaluation
We decided to take him to a speech therapist for an evaluation. Her feedback was that he was saying the required amount of words for his age and that kids are only really expected to be constructing sentences between 3 and 4.
Upon hearing this we were so relieved. It really reassured us that he was doing ok. This also meant we still had a few months left to go before we can really start to panic. The main reason we were concerned in the first place is because we were comparing him to our eldest son, and of course everybody elses expectations of when he should be talking. People often compare your kids to theirs/others and make the mistake of thinking all children progress the same. We did too.
My little one is finally speaking
Not long after his evaluation, he started speaking more and more. It was only after we stopped focusing on his ability to construct sentences that we started noticing how many full words he was actually saying. He was saying alot more than we perceived him to be.
The therapist suggested that we help him along by reading to him often. Its amazing what a major difference reading to your child can do. I increased the amount of reading time quite abit and I can confidently say its had a positive impact.
The therapist also recommended building on each word he says, by just adding one or two extra words. For example, when he says “car”, we could reply with “its a big car”. We did exactly that and also saw how quickly he started making progress from there.
I’ve been receiving regular feedback from his teacher about how wonderfully he is talking and making progress every week.
Patience will do no harm
Children develop at their own rate. You can help them along with a little push here and there but ultimately it is up to them to reach their milestones. And they do, when they are ready. I cannot say that the additional steps we took are the only reasons for the improvement in his speech. It may very well be that we helped him along at the same time that he was ready to speak. What I do know is that a great deal of patience is required.
Tata for now,