View Full Version : How do I encourage speech?

little chickee
16-05-2013, 08:24 AM
I have a mindee aged 28 months.
Hardly ever utters a single word.

I asked Mum what her speech is like at home and she says its really coming on, 4 or 5 words together.
Mindee refuses very stubbornly to say please, thank you, yes , no, sorry etc.

What do I do? I like kids to have good manners, to say yes please, no thank you, thank you etc.
If i ask her anything like " would you like a yoghurt?" I either get a blank look, a very slight nod or shake of the head or she silently puts her hand out to take item.

I really want her to start speaking to me, just basic stuff. I have had her for over 18 months and she is settled here and happy, just silent. I find it a bit unsettling actually!!

16-05-2013, 08:36 AM
That is rather strange and I can understand how unsettling you feel.

Continue to monitor the situation and document it for a further 4 weeks, as mum to stipulate what speech she has at home.

Sometimes children just don't want to speak and then all of a sudden they don't shut up. But if you think she has trouble speaking or hearing, sometimes this can be linked you need to get other agencies involved, first point of call parents which you seem to have done, secondly - health visitor should be be able to direct parents to relevant services if there is an issue but if parents say she is speaking at home, I'm not sure there is a problem to be addressed.

Continue to model language and don't draw attention to lack of manners through speech shyness, I like good manners too and it is infuriating, but you can only lead a horse to water you can't make him drink!!

Good luck, I once had a little girl who didn't want to talk, she could, she just didn't want to, there wasn't a communication problem it could probably have attributed to lack of confidence or shyness. It used to get my goat too but I just had to accept it, the little girl grew up found her voice and flourished just like every other child. :thumbsup: it takes time - a LOOOOOOOOONNNNNNG time

16-05-2013, 09:05 AM
Give her a choice of yougurt, peach or strawberrie? Gives her a chance to make a choice and say which one.. Critical thinking skills come into play!
We all like good manners, but at the moment its more important to encourage her to use her words. Sometimes kids don't speak outside the house, it will come! My friend had a little girl who never said a word, at home she was talking ten to the dozen, guess what? at aged 4 she is talking for England, inside, outside. Lots of gentle encouragment and oppurtunity.

Funny, but board games are a good way to get little ones talking!