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Have your toddler started talking?

June 10, 2010 Leave a comment

Yes? Well and good.

No?  Don’t panic.

It is a  major concern among many parents (including me). Generally, a child starts babbling at the age of 6 months to 1 year. Gradually they utter certain words which they picks up from conversations they get to hear, and what is being told to them. At the age of 2, they might start talking in framed sentences, sing songs or nursery rhymes and so on. Sometimes, some children tend to start talking after 2. Its normal. Every child is unique and different in their traits. Some may be early to talk and walk while others are not.

According to doctors and experts, a child could speak about 20 to 50 words by the age of 2. My son is 23 months and he can speak around 40+ words. Then again, it varies from child to child.

In these modern times, where nuclear families replaces older  extended families, it’s quite obvious that a child gets to see and interact with only a very few people, or rather their momma and papa.  Had it been an extended family in the past, there would be grand parents to pamper them or share a story, uncles and aunts or their kids to play with. All those experiences, interactions and conversations adds to the development behaviour of children.
A prevailing myth about toddlers is that, compared to boys, girls starts talking at an early age, though it is not scientifically proven.

If your toddler has not yet started talking, make sure that you talk to him clearly. Narrate stories to him if he loves listening. While playing or so try to make him utter some words by repeating easy ones. This is just not for once or one day, but has to be repeatedly done every day whole day…  Kids just love praise and appreciation.  Encourage them when they come up with their words, or even when they mimics words or the rhythm of your speech. Mimicking sounds or tone itself is a great step in their development. 

Just hang in there, you might wonder some day all of a sudden your kid starts talking…  Rather than thinking about speech therapy for your kids, just make it an attempt from your side. It definitely yields positive results.

Even after that if you genuinely  think your child needs help, then go for it, don’t look back.

Do you have a similar story to share? Do let us know.

Food for Thought…Overcoming Fears in Kids

May 26, 2010 Leave a comment

I’ve been, of late, thinking about different fears that pervades little minds… The reason being, the uneasiness that I trace in my son while watching a particular ad on tv. Since past 2 weeks I find him crying out loud at the sight of an old man slapping a guy in that ad… Similar situation happens in yet another chocolate ad where a police man hits a burglar… He runs to me for refuge with tears rolling down his cheeks… First I thought that act of being beaten up by someone was scary for him. But in other instances where there is some stunt shown in action movies, he doesn’t seem to have that problem. He doesn’t care if one is hit by another or even a bunch of people… Then I thought it could be the background sound that comes with in that ad. After a pin drop silence, suddenly there’s a loud noise of a tight slap.

It could be either of these… Initial days were difficult to control him. I used to carry him and try to make him understand that he need not worry about it… After a lot of consolation and reassurance for days continuously, now he doesn’t cry for that…but will soon get curled up on my lap… If I’m in the kitchen, then he would run till the kitchen door and will stay there untill the slapping sound gets over… He just needs a support and ensures that I’m with him…

I think that is the best and the only way to help them get over their fears. Because we can never be sure of their imaginations until they grow up to voice their fears to us. Another important thing is to let them face it and get used to it. Fears can be different and they still differs from child to child. But the common ones like fear of darkness, heights, sounds etc can go off once they get used to it. I remember, when my son started walking, he wouldn’t enter a dark room alone. Even while sleeping we used to keep a baby lamp glowing for him. Later we started sleeping with all lights off. And now he doesn’t bother to hide in a dark room while playing… Another fear which is still recovering is for the pressure-cooker whistle. It has scaled down immensely, but he gets the hint that its going to whistle before me and alerts me “Ammaa…cookku..!”. I love it!

He got rid of his fears when he got used to them. And I’ve understood that its important for the parents to remain calm, cool and relaxed and reassure them that they are with them always… We should act normal to them. If they suspects that we too are scared or anxious about something, then kids too picks those cues from parents and its easy to get transmitted. Its important not to take their fears lightly, as it wont make them less fearful and would lower their self-worth and confidence in the long run.

Apparently, some fears are helpful too. As they would make the kids stay alert and makes them behave carefully and in a safe way. In my experience the most inevitable part is being patient and intuitive. Sometimes the more scientific way of handling a fear thought out from the head wouldn’t be of much help and something which we might intuitively feel could turn out to be the best solution… All that I have to say is to have faith and stay closer to God…for He can help us in deciding the best thing, or may be He just makes us bump into someone by coincidence, who can share a similar story… We never know…