From birth to age 5, a child’s brain develops faster than at any other time in their life. In fact, 80% of brain development occurs before kindergarten. These are the years when the brain is programmed to build the critical neural connections needed for speech and language. It’s much harder, and sometimes impossible, for these essential brain connections to be formed later in life.
From the moment they are born children invite their parents and caregivers to engage with them. Babies do it with eye contact, smiling and crying. Toddlers communicate their needs and interests with words and gestures while pre-schoolers use phrases and nuanced body language to send more complex messages. Each of these invitations to communicate, is an opportunity for the caregiver to respond in a way that will help the child successfully “wire” the speech and language centers in their brain.
This is why it’s so important not to wait if you see signs that you child’s communication development is delayed. Some parents are advised that their child will “grow out of it” and they simply wait for the child to catch up. But a “wait and see” approach means that precious time is lost during this critical learning phase.
As a Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP), I know it can be difficult or even impossible to get help for a multitude of reasons: the child is too young, they have a delay but not enough to qualify for speech therapy, there aren’t enough SLPs available in the public system and it is too expensive to hire a private SLP. This is what motivated us to create communkit. It is our mission to provide parents and educators with expert advice, answers to questions, and to highlight the need for early intervention. We have also developed innovative speech and language learning kits for those that want something concrete to work with (SLPs will love these too!).
Our language kits are carefully designed by an expert with over 25 years experience, and are intended for children aged 3-6. Each kit is filled with interesting little objects that are fun for children to explore and manipulate as they practice listening and talking. Visual, tactile, movement and auditory information are combined for maximum learning and sustained attention. The kits can be used at 3 different levels of difficulty and target the following skills:
giving others clear and concise directions
understanding sentences of increasing lengths and grammatical complexity
constructing their own sentences with the correct vocabulary and grammar
auditory memory (remembering what you hear long enough to act on it)
social communication (turn taking, repairing miscommunications, staying on topic, paying attention to your communication partner, etc.
Step by step instructions and positive, no-fail, teaching strategies are provided along with video demonstrations on how to use these kits with children at various levels of development.
Help your child develop the critical early language skills they need now, prepare them for the upcoming language demands of school and have fun doing it!
Connie Romaniuk, R.SLP