In today’s world, expectations for your child’s academic performance are higher than ever. Occasionally, the requirements for school are actually above the developmental norms, causing even typically developing children to have trouble in school. Luckily, we know more than ever before about how to best support early development.
Speech and Language Skills Come First:
Good speech and language skills are the foundation for learning to read. Difficulty in this area will lead to further difficulty down the road. If children cannot say the sounds correctly, they have more trouble associating them with the correct sound. If children have difficulty with the content and grammatical aspects of language, they will have trouble comprehending the concept of how to read and how sentences are constructed. Read more
https://nspt4kids.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/nspt_2-color-logo_noclaims.png00Kate Connollyhttps://nspt4kids.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/nspt_2-color-logo_noclaims.pngKate Connolly2013-11-17 16:00:192014-04-20 09:01:03School Readiness: What Does it Take for Your Child to Succeed in School?
iPads, iPhones and apps. Today’s buzz is all about Smartphone technology and what “apps” will benefit development and academic skills in children. Parents frequently request recommended apps to best address their child’s speech and language skills. After all, we want to take advantage of the latest learning tools and most cutting edge technology to help our kids succeed. However, use of Smartphone technology should be approached with caution. Like all good things, moderation is key.
Here are a few important points to consider before integrating Smartphone technology into your child’s daily routine:
Pros: What are the positive benefits of Smartphone technology?
Devices such as tablets, Smartphones and iPads expose children to modern day technology, improving their computer literacy and ability to navigate such tools.
Smartphone apps provide a fun and entertaining activity for children. This can be excellent choice for breaks from homework, rewards or car-rides.
Cons: What are the negative effects of Smartphone technology?
Smartphone apps promote passive learning and provide little opportunity for creativity, social interaction, problem-solving, sustained attention, ideation, and make-believe. All of these skills are foundational to development in children by promoting motor skills, language learning, problem-solving, and social skills.
While Smartphone apps may encourage children to talk or practice sounds, they do not encourage children talk to an actual person. Language is a reciprocal social system, intended for communication between people. It’s critical that children learn to communicate with others in a reciprocal context.
Smartphone apps do not promote the use of novel language. A critical part of language development includes the ability to arrange words into combinations, building sentences to communicate their thoughts and ideas.
Smartphone applications offer little opportunity to learn social skills. Social skills include interpreting nonverbal cues, making eye-contact, initiating conversation, and responding to others.
When it comes to learning, practicing skills in context is critical. So even though Smartphones might teach children new skills, they do not offer opportunities for children to generalize these skills in a real-life context.
So what can parents do?
Here are a few practical steps as families navigate their child’s use of tablets, Smartphones and iPads:
Think moderation. Limit your child’s use of electronics, and set boundaries ahead of time so your child knows what to expect.
Encourage activities that encourage creativity, social interaction, problem solving, sustaining attention, ideation, and make-believe. A few good choices include blocks, dress-up, play-doh, books, pretend food, and baby dolls.
Spend face-to-face time with your child every day. Encourage your child to participate in play with you and encourage their use of their language, facial expressions, eye-contact, and engagement.
https://nspt4kids.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/nspt_2-color-logo_noclaims.png00Deanna Swallowhttps://nspt4kids.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/nspt_2-color-logo_noclaims.pngDeanna Swallow2012-10-12 10:17:062014-04-26 16:23:42Smartphone Technology and Language Development: Pros and Cons
For many children going to 1st grade is a huge milestone. More hours spent in school, higher expectations for academic, behavior, social skills, and more peer pressure.
Here are some tips to parent these kids as “right” as you can before 1st grade:
Prepare your child with some online fun academics, flash cards, or any workbook for 1st grade readiness; but make it fun! 10 minutes per day is enough! You can even try KUMON math and reading to get them strong in basics for math and reading. This will also prepare them with homework.
Strengthen up any weaknesses your child may have in academics. If they need a little reading help, use the following tips in this blog. If they need some number work, try flashcards, or try a tutor, but even just 10 minutes a day can make a huge difference in their self esteem about academics.
Get your child tested now if you detect any challenges. Don’t wait for the teacher to say something at conferences! Go get a good neuropsychological exam and you will know what strengths and challenges your child has and have an opportunity to grow them.
Use a daily schedule even in first grade for time management and learning appropriate skills.
Make sure your child knows how to follow rules, understands boundaries, and knows the expectations of first grade children. This includes raising hands, taking turns, staying quiet and getting involved/participation, etc.
Get your child some support if behavior is an issue. There are social groups, social workers, books, all kinds of tools to help out there!
Your child needs to know what YOU expect of him and what your consequences are at home.
Make sure your family gets proper sleep and food daily.
Social skills/Peer Pressure
Make play dates for your child and help model proper 1st grade skills.
Join a community playgroup/social group at a local clinic, park district or religious organization.
If you suspect something is still off about his social skills, get him evaluated and he can practice his skills with the right support.
Make sure to keep your child engaged and talkative with you so you can help him through the tough and great times of 1st grade.
Summer is the time of the year when children engage in more free play and physical activity. Therefore, summer is the perfect time of the year to improve upon skills that children need in order to be active, successful, and independent children!
Here are some of the best reasons to consider starting therapy or increasing the number of therapy sessions for your child over the summer:
Maintain and improve skills for school – Since school is out for the summer, it is important that children do not lose the fine motor, problem-solving, planning, and organizational skills (and more) that are necessary to be productive students at school. Although summertime is a great time to provide opportunity for free play, it may create academic issues for your child once school starts back up if he or she does not engage in challenging tasks during their 3 month break from school.
Practice physical activities, such as bike riding, climbing, and jumping rope – During the summer, children are often playing outside for hours on end. It may become noticeable that your child is not keeping up with their peers. Activities with which you may notice some difficulty are often when children have to coordinate their arms and legs, such as jumping jacks, climbing the jungle gym, and learning to ride a 2-wheeler. By participating in therapy over the summer, therapists can address these specific concerns in order to help your child stay up to speed with their friends while performing these activities.
More availability over the summer – Since your children are out of school for the summer, they may have a lot more time and availability during the day to participate in more therapy. Summer camp and extra-curricular activities often only take up part of the day, so there may be more times you are available to schedule therapy appointments. Furthermore, although camp and extra-curricular activities are great options for staying active, they do not necessarily offer the same therapeutic benefits as therapy.
Provides structure to their day– Oftentimes, summer can be a season of unstructured play time in which children can do anything they would like. Sometimes the choices are so overwhelming that this can often lead to hours of playing video games, watching TV, and other sedentary activities. Therapy can provide structure to your child’s day to make them feel like they are being productive by spending their time doing valuable tasks.
Opportunity for peer interaction outside of school – Once school is over for the summer, some children may only spend their time with the same friends every day. Therapy sessions can provide the opportunity to make more friends in the clinic and learn how to engage in social situations with other people.
These are just a few of the many benefits that therapy can provide to your child over the summer! By making your child more actively engaged in goal-directed activities, you are setting your child up to be productive students the following school year and active children during the summer!
https://nspt4kids.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/nspt_2-color-logo_noclaims.png00Lindsey Millerhttps://nspt4kids.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/nspt_2-color-logo_noclaims.pngLindsey Miller2012-08-10 14:23:502014-04-26 23:14:27The Benefits of Increasing Therapy Over the Summer