Juno is a few months past her second birthday now, and her total word count is up to about a dozen, most of which sound identical and rely on context to be understood. The average two year old has a speaking vocabulary of about 50 words and is putting words together in 2-3 word phrases/sentences. So you can see that she's quite a bit behind.
Her speech delay is severe enough that she qualifies for services. She's been in speech therapy for about five months now and we have seen a huge improvement in that time! Juno's therapy includes monthly hour-long visits with her speech therapist, which we do in our home, and a weekly singing group with other kids in her age range. Some of the other kids in singing group also have speech delays, but there is a wide range of delays. Juno really enjoys both singing group and when her "talking teacher" comes. Her speech therapist basically just plays with her for an hour with all kinds of fun, interesting new toys. Here are some of the things she has asked us to be doing with Juno:
- Give lots of choices. "Do you want your red cup or your blue cup?" Even if Juno doesn't verbalize which one she wants, we reiterate "Oh, you want your blue cup!" when she points or gestures towards it.
- Lots of repetition. "You need help? I will help you. Here I am, helping Juno!"
- Sign and speak simple words. Juno's picked up a couple signs and is now transitioning into trying to say the word as she signs it, like "please" and "help".
- Lots and lots of pretend play, like feeding babies, playing with farm animals, cooking, etc.
- Acknowledge that she is saying a word, even if she is pronouncing it wrong. For instance, Juno calls water "wa-wa", so when she asks for wa-wa, I say "Sure, here's some water for you!"
Like I said, she's improved a lot since we got her some help. I'm so glad we made that choice! She even said her first "sentence" the other day. The cat was in the bathtub, drinking out of the faucet, and Juno was very excited. She grabbed me by the hand and dragged me over, saying "Kitty eat wa-wa! Kitty eat wa-wa!"
This is a sponsored post, however all opinions and views are my own.