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  • ToddlerIdeasToddlerIdeas Posts: 3Member
    Hello Chris - my 4 year 1 mth old son is very speech delayed. He was assessed by the ed psych as being in the bottom 1% for his age. No diagnosis from the professionals, he seems to be in that mystery bracket. He knows lots of single words and is teaching himself to read! So he has tauight himself : happy birthday, the end, bear grylls, next,,...plus all the big brands like sainsburys. The SLT gave us a pic timeline which is magic for his behaviour but now Im focused on getting Tom to say sentences. With prompting he can say "I want....please" and "thankyou" but he rarely says this independently, only when its urgent.

    I have just spent 2 hours trawling the web for any books that have activities I can do with Tom to help form sentences . Do you have any recommendations? I saw the london speech therapy resources page you recommended but apart from that I feel really stuck. After a 6 week (6 x 2hr sessions) assessment from all the professionals we have an accurate picture of |Tom's ability but I was v surprised at the lack of practical suggestions I can use.

    So here a re my qs

    1. any book recommendations? or websites
    2. Is it true that intervention before age 5 can make all the difference? I have this horrible "the window closes in 11 months time" feeling. At the moment nobody knows if he's just delayed or has innate spec needs. the rec was to send him to special school but there's no place at present. So it's all down to me
  • Dear Toodlerideas,

    Thank you for your question, I'll try my best to answer it with the information you have given me. I have lots of questions for you too, so please try and answer them too.

    To begin with does Tom initiate communication with you i.e. does he ask for items using their names or give you items he needs help with and make a sound when doing so? Did the assessing team talk to you about a symbolic communication system such as PECS?

    Your first job is to find out what motivates Tom, what is he most interested in? Finding this is the key and you can then use it to get him communicate with you.

    The London Speech Therapy activity I have previously suggested for other children is great for teaching children to comment but this may not be the most appropriate activity for your son yet. Where in the UK do you live and do you currently have a SLT overseeing Tom? Also you mentioned him not yet being in a special school, is there a plan to find him one? Make sure you contact your local MP to highlight this issue.

    Early intervention is important when developing cognitive and language skills however you can continue to have a huge impact after age 5.

    Email me at [email protected] if you have any assessment specific questions.

    Warm regards


    Chris
  • ToddlerIdeasToddlerIdeas Posts: 3Member
    Hello Chris

    Sorry about the delay in replying. I was waiting on the latest panel meeting about Tom's admission into special school. Yesterday I heard he has not yet got a place and is still on the waiting list.

    To answer your questions:

    Question one - yes Tom does communicate with single words and the "I want… Please" structure that I have taught him. Lately he's also been saying phrases that I don't understand, which although frustrating , I have to feel happy about - because it means that he actually wants to communicate. So we have moved on from a situation where he just used to point to get what he wants to actually verbalising it. I would say that most of his communication that he initiates is single words. For example, if he sees a train will just say "train". We 2 word phrases, for example yesterday he opened his lunchbox and spontaneously said "empty box".

    Q2 - yes we use PEC S - yes the SLT showed us this and it's been amazing for his behaviour. It was also how I taught him the "I want… please" sentence (using his ability to read to help) I have tried this with other sentences for example "I like running" to which he will come out with "I want running"

    Question three I'm in Shrewsbury. We have no SLT. The one we had passed us on to the child development centre for a multidisciplinary assessments, the upshot of was that he go to a special school - that recommendation was in June. So we've been waiting with no SLT to hear about the special school, and yesterday I was told that not only has he not got a place, but they are going to do another multidisciplinary assessment.

    The last one was in June. They say that his admission to the special school is dependent on the results of this assessment. This is a very difficult situation, because I don't feel he has made much progress since June (except in his behaviour) (I must admit I'm a bit obsessive about getting him to form sentences.) - therefore how can they tell us that he's not on a place, but that the outcome of this next lot of assessments will decide if he gets a place? It sounds like stalling to me . Anyway the lady I spoke to gave me her number, so I will ring her back and question more assessments. I was in a bit of a state of shock when she told me.


    Thank you for the tip about my MP, I will follow that up


    Thank you so much for taking the time to answer all my questions. It really helps.
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