Important Milestones: Your Child at Four Years

 

How your child plays, learns, speaks, and acts offers important clues about your child’s development. Developmental milestones are things most children can do by a certain age.

Check the milestones your child has reached by his or her 4th birthday. Take this with you and talk with your child’s doctor at every visit about the milestones your child has reached and what to expect next.

What most babies do at this age:

Social and Emotional

  • Enjoys doing new things
  • Plays “Mom” and “Dad”
  • Is more and more creative with make-believe play
  • Would rather play with other children than by himself/herself
  • Cooperates with other children
  • Often can’t tell what’s real and what’s make-believe
  • Talks about what she likes and what she is interested in

Language and Communication

  • Knows some basic rules of grammar, such as correctly using “he” and “she”
  • Sings a song or says a poem from memory such as the “Itsy Bitsy Spider” or the “Wheels on the Bus”
  • Tells stories
  • Can say first and last name
Cognitive (learning, thinking, problem-solving)
  • Names some colors and some numbers
  • Understands the idea of counting
  • Starts to understand time
  • Remembers parts of a story
  • Understands the idea of “same” and “different”
  • Draws a person with 2 to 4 body parts
  • Uses scissors
  • Starts to copy some capital letters
  • Plays board or card games
  • Tells you what he thinks is going to happen next in a book

Movement and Physical Development

  • Hops and stands on one foot up to 2 seconds
  • Catches a bounced ball most of the time
  • Pours, cuts with supervision, and mashes own food

Act early by talking to your child’s doctor if your child:

  • Can’t jump in place
  • Has trouble scribbling
  • Shows no interest in interactive games or make-believe
  • Ignores other children or doesn’t respond to people outside the family
  • Resists dressing, sleeping, and using the toilet
  • Can’t retell a favorite story
  • Doesn’t follow 3-part commands
  • Doesn’t understand “same” and “different”
  • Doesn’t use “me” and “you” correctly
  • Speaks unclearly
  • Loses skills he once had

If you have any questions or concerns, click here to contact Speech-language Pathologist Christine Wilson.

Tips for Practicing Articulation Sounds

 

Reading is one of the best ways for your child to improve language, grammar and vocabulary. The following books are great for helping children practice their articulation sounds. These books are not intended to replace therapy with a speech-language pathologist. This blog is simply a valuable tip for home programming. We have included two book suggestions under each articulation sound. If your child is having difficulties with certain sounds, look for the sound or sounds below and check out the suggested reading!

Overall Favorite Books to Help With Articulation Skills: 

  • Charlie Who Couldn’t Say His Name by: Davene Fahy
  • Silent Letters Loud and Clear by: Robin Pulver
  • Wodney Wat’s Wobot by: Helen Lester
  • Speech Class Rules: An Introduction to Speech Therapy for Children by: Ronda Wojcicki
  • The War Between the Vowels and the Consonants by: Pricilla Turner
  • Runny Babbit: A Billy Sook by: Shel Silverstein
  • Pacifiers Are Not Forever by: Elizabeth Verdick
  • Taking Speech Disorders to School by: John E. Bryant
  • Willow’s Whispers by: Lana Button

Vowels/Word Families/Phonics:

  • The Vowel Family: A Tale of Lost Vowels by: Sally Walker
  • Uh-Oh! by: Lavina Pereira and Michelle Solomon

/p/:

  • Pop Up! by: Lavina Pereira and Michelle Solomon
  • Caps For Sale by: Esphyr Slobodkina

/b/: 

  • Oh! A Bubble… by: Lavina Pereira and Michelle Solomon
  • Boom Bah! By: Phil Cummings
  • More Bugs in Boxes by: David Carter
  • Down by the Bay by: Raffi
  • Baby Beluga by: Raffi

/w/:

  • Wishy-Washy Day by: Joy Cowley
  • Mrs. Wishy-Washy’s Christmas by: Joy Cowley

/m/: 

  • Mama More… by: Lavina Pereira and Michelle Solomon
  • Goodnight Moon by: Margaret Wise Brown

/n/: 

  • Bunny Needs a Nap by: Lavina Pereira and Michelle Solomon
  • Know Your Noses by: June English

/ng/ 

  • Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed by: Eileen Christelow
  • Ding Dong Pizza by: Frances Ann Ladd

/t/: 

  • Tom’s Toes Can… by: Lavina Pereira and Michelle Solomon
  • The Foot Book by: Dr. Seuss

/d/: 

  • Daddy Do by: Lavina Pereira and Michelle Solomon
  • Digging Up Dinosaurs by: Aliki

/k/: 

  • Cow Cake by: Lavina Pereira and Michelle Solomon
  • Fox in Socks by: Dr. Seuss by: Patricia Thomas

/g/: 

  • Too Big! by: Lavina Pereira and Michelle Solomon
  • My Gum is Gone by: Richard P. Yurcheshen

/h/: 

  • Hannah Sighs by: Lavina Pereira and Michelle Solomon
  • Hop on Pop by: Dr. Seuss

/f/: 

  • One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish by: Dr. Seuss
  • Flip and Flop by: Dawn Apperley

/v/: 

  • If You Give a Pig a Pancake by: Laura Joffe Numeroff
  • If You Take A Mouse to the Movies by: Laura Joffe Numeroff

/th/: 

  • Thidwick the Big-Hearted Moose by: Dr. Seuss
  • And to Think That I Saw it on Mulberry Street by: Dr. Seuss

/sh/:

  • Shhhh by: Kevin Henkes
  • One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish by: Dr. Seuss

/ch/: 

  • Chicky Chicky Chook Chook by: Cathy MacLennan
  • Chicken Cheeks by: Michael Ian Black

/dg/: 

  • The Giant Jam Sandwich by: John Vernon Lord
  • The Animal Hedge by: Paul Fleischman

/s/&/s/ blends

  • She Sells Seashells: A Tongue Twister Story by: Grace Kim
  • The Singing Birds’ Show by: J. Elizabeth Mills

/z/: 

  • If I Ran the Zoo by: Dr. Seuss
  • Whose Nose and Toes? by: John Butler

/l/: 

  • Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? By: Bill Martin and Eric Carle
  • Lyle, Lyle, Crocodile by: Bernard Waber

/r/: 

  • Harriet’s Horrible Hair Day by: Dawn Lesley Stewart
  • The Pirate Who Couldn’t Say Arrr! by: Angie Neal

/j/:

  • See the Yak Yak by: Charles Ghigna

If you have any questions or concerns, please click here to contact Christine Wilson.

Important Milestones: Your Child at 3 Years

 

Posted by Emily K. Hulse

Check the milestones your child has reached by his or her 3rd birthday. Take this with you and talk with your child’s doctor at every visit about the milestones your child has reached and what to expect next.

What most children do at this age:

Social and Emotional:
  • Copies adults and friends
  • Shows affection for friends without prompting
  • Takes turns in games
  • Shows concern for crying friend
  • Understands the idea of “mine” and “his” or “hers”
  • Shows a wide range of emotions
  • Separates easily from mom and dad
  • May get upset with major changes in routine
  • Dresses and undresses self
Language/Communication:
  • Follows instructions with 2 or 3 steps
  • Can name most familiar things
  • Understands words like “in,” “on,” and “under”
  • Says first name, age, and sex
  • Names a friend
  • Says words like “I,” “me,” “we,” and “you” and some plurals (cars, dogs, cats)
  • Talks well enough for strangers to understand most of the time
  • Carries on a conversation using 2 to 3 sentences
Cognitive (learning, thinking, problem-solving):
  • Can work toys with buttons, levers, and moving parts
  • Plays make-believe with dolls, animals, and people
  • Does puzzles with 3 or 4 pieces
  • Understands what “two” means
  • Copies a circle with pencil or crayon
  • Turns book pages one at a time
  • Builds towers of more than 6 blocks
  • Screws and unscrews jar lids or turns door handle
Movement/Physical Development:
  • Climbs well
  • Runs easily
  • Pedals a tricycle (3-wheel bike)
  • Walks up and down stairs, one foot on each step
Act early by talking to your child’s doctor if your child:
  • Falls down a lot or has trouble with stairs
  • Drools or has very unclear speech
  • Can’t work simple toys (such as peg boards, simple puzzles, turning handle)
  • Doesn’t speak in sentences
  • Doesn’t understand simple instructions
  • Doesn’t play pretend or make-believe
  • Doesn’t want to play with other children or with toys
  • Doesn’t make eye contact
  • Loses skills he once had

It’s important to notify your child’s doctor or nurse if you notice any of these signs of possible developmental delay for this age.

If you have any questions contact Speech Therapist, Christine Wilson.

Important Milestones: Your Child at 2 Years

 

Posted by Emily K. Hulse

How your child plays, learns, speaks, and acts offers important clues about your child’s development. Developmental milestones are things most children can do by a certain age. Check the milestones your child has reached by his or her 2nd birthday. Take this with you and talk with your child’s doctor at every visit about the milestones your child has reached and what to expect next.

What most children do at this age:

Social and Emotional

  • Copies others, especially adults and older children
  • Gets excited when with other children
  • Shows more and more independence
  • Shows defiant behavior (doing what he/she has been told not to)
  • Plays mainly beside other children, but is beginning to include other children, such as in chase games

Language/Communication

  • Points to things or pictures when they are named
  • Knows names of familiar people and body parts
  • Says sentences with 2 to 4 words
  • Follows simple instructions
  • Repeats words overheard in conversation
  • Points to things in a book

Cognitive (learning, thinking, problem-solving)

  • Finds things even when hidden under two or three covers
  • Begins to sort shapes and colors
  • Completes sentences and rhymes in familiar books
  • Plays simple make-believe games
  • Builds towers of 4 or more blocks
  • Might use one hand more than the other
  • Follows two-step instructions such as “Pick up your shoes and put them in the closet.”
  • Names items in a picture book such as a cat, bird, or dog

Movement/Physical Development

  • Stands on tiptoe
  • Kicks a ball
  • Begins to run
  • Climbs onto and down from furniture without help
  • Walks up and down stairs holding on
  • Throws ball overhand
  • Makes or copies straight lines and circles

Act early by talking to your child’s doctor if your child:

  • Doesn’t use 2-word phrases (for example, “drink milk”)
  • Doesn’t know what to do with common things, like a brush, phone, fork, spoon
  • Doesn’t copy actions and words
  • Doesn’t follow simple instructions
  • Doesn’t walk steadily
  • Loses skills she once had

It’s important to notify your child’s doctor or nurse if you notice any of these signs of possible developmental delay for this age.

If you have any questions contact Speech Therapist, Christine Wilson.

Important Milestones: Your Child at 18 Months

 

Children usually progress in a natural, predictable sequence from one developmental milestone to the next. But each child grows and gains skills at his or her own pace. Some children may be advanced in one area, such as language, but behind in another, such as sensory and motor development. Milestones usually are categorized into five major areas: physical growth, cognitive development, emotional and social development, language development, and sensory and motor development. What most babies do at 18 months: Social and Emotional

  • Likes to hand things to others as play
  • May have temper tantrums
  • May be afraid of strangers
  • Shows affection to familiar people
  • Plays simple pretend, such as feeding a doll
  • May cling to caregivers in new situations
  • Points to show others something interesting
  • Explores alone but with parent close by

Language/Communication

  • Says several single words
  • Says and shakes head “no”
  • Points to show someone what he/she wants

Cognitive (learning, thinking, problem-solving)

  • Knows what ordinary things are for; for example, telephone, brush, spoon
  • Points to get the attention of others
  • Shows interest in a doll or stuffed animal by pretending to feed
  • Points to one body part
  • Scribbles on his/her own
  • Can follow 1-step verbal commands without any gestures; for example, sits when you say “sit down”

Movement/Physical Development

  • Walks alone
  • May walk up steps and run
  • Pulls toys while walking
  • Can help undress herself/himself
  • Drinks from a cup
  • Eats with a spoon

*Act early by talking to your child’s doctor if your child*

  • Doesn’t point to show things to others
  • Can’t walk
  • Doesn’t know what familiar things are for
  • Doesn’t copy others
  • Doesn’t gain new words
  • Doesn’t have at least 6 wordsDoesn’t notice or mind when a caregiver leaves or returns
  • Loses skills he once had

PLAY RECOMMENDATIONS

  • Encourage and provide the necessary space for physical activity
  • Allow the child to help around the house and participate in the family’s daily responsibilities
  • Encourage play that involves building and creativity
  • Read to the child
  • Encourage play dates with children of the same age
  • Avoid television time before age 2
  • Play simple games together, such as puzzles and shape sorting
  • A transitional object may help separation anxiety

If you have any questions or concerns, contact speech-language pathologist, Christine Wilson.

Your Child at 1 Year

 

How your child plays, learns, speaks, and acts offers important clues about your child’s development. Developmental milestones are things most children can do by a certain age. Check the milestones your child has reached by his or her 1st birthday. Take this with you and talk with your child’s doctor at every visit about the milestones your child has reached and what to expect next.

What most children do at this age (1 year old):

Social/Emotional:

  • Is shy or nervous with strangers
  • Cries when mom or dad leaves
  • Has favorite things and people
  • Shows fear in some situations
  • Hands you a book when he wants to hear a story
  • Repeats sounds or actions to get attention
  • Puts out arm or leg to help with dressing
  • Plays games such as “peek-a-boo” and “pat-a-cake”

Language/Communication

  • Responds to simple spoken requests
  • Uses simple gestures, like shaking head “no” or waving “bye-bye”
  • Makes sounds with changes in tone (sounds more like speech)
  • Says “mama” and “dada” and exclamations like “uh-oh!”
  • Tries to say words you say

Cognitive (learning, thinking, problem-solving)

  • Explores things in different ways, like shaking, banging, throwing
  • Finds hidden things easily
  • Looks at the right picture or thing when it’s named
  • Copies gestures
  • Starts to use things correctly; for example, drinks from a cup, brushes hair
  • Bangs two things together
  • Puts things in a container, takes things out of a container
  • Lets things go without help
  • Pokes with index (pointer) finger
  • Follows simple directions like “pick up the toy”

Movement/Physical Development

  • Gets to a sitting position without help
  • Pulls up to stand, walks holding on to furniture (“cruising”)
  • May take a few steps without holding on
  • May stand alone

Act Early by Talking to Your Child’s Doctor if Your Child:

  • Doesn’t crawl
  • Can’t stand when supported
  • Doesn’t search for things that she sees you hide
  • Doesn’t say single words like “mama” or “dada”
  • Doesn’t learn gestures like waving or shaking head
  • Doesn’t point to things
  • Loses skills he once had

Tell your child’s doctor or nurse if you notice any of these signs of possible developmental delay for this age, and talk with someone in your community who is familiar with services for young children in your area, such as your state’s public early intervention program. If you have any questions contact Speech Therapist, Christine Wilson at www.newtampaspeechtherapy.com

Using an Appropriate Volume

 

Posted by Emily K. Hulse

Volume is the loudness or softness of your voice. Is your child having difficulties in using an appropriate volume? Use the steps below to help teach your child how to use an appropriate volume. You can start the discussion with your child by asking him/her this question: What are some situations in which you had to adjust your volume level?

1. Know the difference between a soft voice and a loud voice: Have your child practice using soft and loud voices at home in order to learn how each one feels and sounds.

2. Know your habit: Many people typically talk too softly or too loudly. If your child is aware that they talk softly or loudly, they can adjust their volume to make it easier for a listener to hear them.

3. Consider your environment: It’s important for your child to be able to decide how softly or loudly he/she needs to speak by listening to the noise level of his/her surroundings.

4. Look at the distance between you and your listener: Inform your child that if they are standing a couple feet away from their listener, they can speak in a softer voice than if they are standing several yards away.

5. Recognize when you are excited about a topic: When we are excited, we tend to speak louder and quicker! When your child is able to recognize that he/she is speaking too loud due to excitement, your child will learn how to control his/her volume.

Going over these steps with your child will help him/her understand when it is appropriate to talk softly and loudly. They will be able to adjust their volumes in no time! If you have any questions about volume control, contact Christine Wilson.