Tag: first words

Why I tell parents to point at things to help late talkers to speak

Most kids gesture before they talk.  For example, they: point at things they want parents to look at; shake their heads to say “no”; and tilt their hands to their mouth to tell us they want a drink. When assessing...

/ 7 September 2015

Late talkers: how I choose which words to work on first

Choosing words to teach* late talkers is hard – for both parents and speech pathologists!  But there’s some great research out there to guide decision-making, if you know where to look. As a Hanen-certified speech pathologist, I’ve just completed a...

/ 20 July 2015

FAQ: which action words should I teach my toddler, and how?

2016 research update alert: for more up-to-date information, click here. When kids get to around two, we expect them to start combining words into short phrases and sentences. Problem is, many of us parents tend to spend most of our...

/ 15 October 2014

Speech pathology homework doesn’t have to be boring

Atop a foothill of Mt Warrenheip, a mere 8km from my childhood home in Ballarat, sits Kryal Castle. Behold its magnificence! Built in the 1970s by one Keith Ryall, the castle features a moat, a maze, stocks, an armory, mock-hangings, performing lions, jousting...

/ 17 June 2014

Do kids learn how to string sentences together by listening to baby talk?

No. “Where’s the dolly? Here’s the dolly. You see the dolly, don’t you? Dolly smiling. Pretty dolly. “ Reading those words, you can almost hear the typical parent’s voice in your head: high-pitched, exaggerated intonation, slower than normal speech, and...

/ 10 March 2014

Helping toddlers with their first words – mix it up and make them useful (the words, not the toddlers)!

A couple of years ago, in a trendy Inner West cafe, I spied a Very Committed Dad sitting across from his terribly young daughter.  They could barely see each other over the small mountain of branded flashcards in the middle...

/ 17 February 2014