As regular readers will know, Monkey’s speech was delayed, it caused some anxiety for me at the time, and lots of frustration for him. At 2 years of age the expected level is to be able to have a 50 word vocabulary and be able to put 3-5 words together. We took a while to reach that level, and have been on catch up ever since. So I have a keen interest in speech skills and what I can do to help Monkey on his communication journey.
So when Talking Tips for Kids contacted me to review a couple of their video’s I was keen to have a look.
TalkingTipsForKids offers a range of videos written and presented by Speech and Language Therapist Fiona Barry. The videos are packed full of useful tips to boost your child’s communication skills that are designed to be put into practice as part of your everyday routines at home. All the advice is based on research and evidence from current clinical practice.
There are a number of free video’s available to view on the website, alongside some more in-depth ones which can be purchased for £2.99 each (there are also bundle deals for bulk buys).
I decided to look at Ages and Stages (0-5 years) and Talented Talk (approx 3-5 years) as these were the most relevant for Monkey, now aged 3 and half years.
Ages and Stages is just over 13 minutes long and provides some key information on a child’s speech and hearing development right from within the womb. It was great for me to watch, and realise how far Monkey has actually travelled on his walk with language and communication . I could relate to a number of the points raised.
Fiona talks clearly and the video gives you information of likely developmental stages. It’s an interesting video to watch for anyone with younger children, the first half of the video shows stages that are now behind Monkey – building up an early vocabulary etc, but I can imagine it being good for some ideas if I’d had another child. It was great at focussing me and actually, where are we now with Monkey’s speech? What types of words are we using together and what can I focus on in the next few years to help him.
Talented Talk focusses on children aged from approximately 3 years – 5 years, the video is 18 minutes long and is packed with useful information on how to help your child’s speech development during these years. I’ve picked up lots of tips – tune in to what Monkey is actually saying and trying to communicate to me, join in with his imaginary play (which I do) but follow his instructions rather than taking the lead. It was interesting to watch this video as not only did I learn quite a lot, but it also reaffirmed some things that I already do, such as getting down to Monkey’s level to talk and play.
One of the things I learnt with Monkey and his speech delay was to talk continually about what we were doing (sounds easy), whether it be in the car or the supermarket. I struggled with this at times, it would all be going on in my head but I didn’t always vocalise it. Once I’d realised my mistake, I soon saw how much it helped Monkey and this video continues with that theme. Talk through play, what? why? where? letting your child take the lead.
I’m guessing that if you have older children, or are involved in education, then all of this is obvious but I know have a better understanding of Mark Making – why it’s so important for writing skills, and also how important getting your child to listen and complete tasks is now, for their future development in years to come. There is so much value in uninterrupted talk time, something that is so important in a world where we all tend to rush around, stop, make time and listen.
I learnt things from each of these videos, and have certainly made notes from the Talented Talk video to help Monkey over the coming years. I found them informative and easy to understand and would recommend them to any parent wanting some clear and concise tips for talking with their kids.
You can find out more about the entire range of video’s available from the Talking Tips for Kids website.
disclaimer: I was given free access to the two video’s mentioned for the purpose of review, my comments however, remain my own, honest thoughts.