How To Do Speech Therapy at Home – Useful Methods for Kids
An important aspect in the growth of any child is the normal and timely development of language skills. Speech for kids, is like a marker of proper growth, and thus when a child doesn’t acquire language and basic speaking skills by a certain age, it becomes a cause for concern. What is speech therapy at home?
Now one may ask, what is speech therapy? It is nothing but a sort of therapy and treatment that is used to improve communication skills in a person. The process started out as a lab-based process with some patented methods used to bring out speech in people, especially children with delayed speech. Eventually, these methods were suitably altered to be performed at home, too, and the practice of home-based speech therapy came to be.
Parents will always be the first to notice if something is wrong with their children, and although parents should not proceed with the therapy without professional guidance, home based speech therapy can actually help the child to pick up the language skills faster, especially if the child in question is too young.
Here are a Few Methods You Can Try For Home Speech Therapy: –
1. Make Conversation with Your Child is a Part of Speech Therapy
Every day, when your child gets back from preschool, playschool or daycare, ask them about their day. What they learned and what they ate, and who they spoke with. They may be reluctant to answer, but if you can make it a habit, then you’re all set.
Speech for kids is acquired largely by what they hear, and if you are a working parent, then your child’s nanny should not be the sole source of speech for your child for the majority of the day. Children need to experience things in order to describe them, and that is why enrolling them in a daycare, preschool, or playschool is something you should strongly consider.
2. Increase Speech-Word Association
When teaching kids the names of objects, show them the objects from a close range and multiple times. This is an important exercise for speech therapy for children because, as already mentioned, children can describe what they see. Thus increasing visibility between an object and its description increases the chances of them recognizing it better.
3. Minimize Using Pacifiers
If you see that your child is not talking as much as he/she should, even after a certain age, then one of the primary home remedies for late talking child is removing barriers between his mouth and speech. And this includes pacifiers. Discontinue using them as pacifiers hinders a child from talking.
Some children also have a habit of continuously sucking on their fingers. Whenever you see your child with a thumb in his mouth, gently remove it and tell him not to do it again. It will take multiple calm attempts to completely get rid of the behavior. Give similar instructions to their daycare teachers so that they can correct it whenever they spot it as well.
4. Offer Choices
This is a strategy or rather a way to make very little children speak and thus is a good exercise for speech therapy at home for 2 year-old or 3-year-old.
Instead of directly asking what your child wants, rephrase the question in a way that gives him multiple things to choose from. In this way, your child will be forced to speak. The only thing you have to remember is that patience is key for home speech therapy. Your child will not immediately respond, but if you consistently and calmly continue the exercises, he will speak.
5. Pay Attention to Your Child
While we are talking about patience, we should also remember to pay close attention to your child’s developing talking. In language development, mistakes also help in the organic growth of vocabulary and speech skills.
If your kid is making mistakes while speaking, then you should correct them, so the errors don’t become permanent in his way of talking.
6. Play Games with Your Child
Even a parent who does not know what is speech therapy should make time daily and play with their children.
Games stimulate children’s imagination, and if something is taught within a game, they are likely to learn it faster. This tactic is best applied for children who have crossed the toddler stage as their cognitive skills improve by then; thus, teaching through games are good speech therapy exercises for 3 year old and older.
7. Let Your Child Do the Talking
Language acquisition in humans is still a phenomenon that is not properly explained as to when and how exactly it happens. But one thing is guaranteed, speed for kids will develop only with practice. The only way to do that is to provoke maximum talking from your child.
Consider giving him a problem and ask him to fix it properly. While doing so, he may struggle to form sentences but do not finish them for him. Let him make mistakes, and then you can correct them.
8. Practice Reading
Not just in children, reading has been proven to increase language skills even in adults. Buy your children books with pictures and stories that they can read. Make reading a daily habit. Another speech therapy exercise you can practice is to have your child describe the story they read in their own words.
Rest assured, delayed speech in children is not a rarity, and there is nothing to lose during your sleepover. With continuous speech therapy, your child will start speaking the normal amount soon.