What particular things I can do to help my child / young person with their understanding, talking or communication
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Tiny Happy People SEND information
This area of the Tiny Happy People BBC website provides a wide range of information, ideas and activities for parents of toddlers with SEND.
Expansions - repeat and add
One way to help your toddler make longer sentences is to repeat and add a word or 2. Here NHS Tayside's Rhyming Robin and Chatty Charlie share information about how to do this as well as many other top tips for putting words together.
Parent information, advice and resources - Worcestershire
The Worcestershire Speech and Language Therapy service website provides a comprehensive range of resources, advice and You Tube videos to help parents to support their child / young person at home.
Visit the website to find:
- Information about speech, language and communication
- Free resources you can download and use at home
- Links to our You Tube channel where you will find demonstrations of activities you can do at home
- Further information about the local team, where we work and what services we provide
Hear Glue Ear
Cost: Free App
Be face to face at the toddler's level
Being at the toddler's level and being face to face with them helps them to listen, concentrate and understand the message. It also helps you to see where their focus is and what they are trying to communicate. This simple video produced by Leeds Community Healthcare NHS Trust shows why this is important.
BBC Something Special
Something Special uses songs, rhymes and visual humour with Makaton sign language to help you and your toddler learn how to communicate as well as develop their language in a fun and exciting way.
Afasic About Talking
Afasic supports parents and carers with young children who have difficulties with listening, talking and understanding others. Here you will find information about: talking, listening and understanding; the terms used to describe these skills; how to recognise if your toddler may have difficulties in these areas; some of the terms used to describe types of difficulties; what might cause these difficulties and the impact that this may have on their development
The Speech and Language UK Enquiry Service gives you a chance to discuss questions or concerns about your child’s speech, language and communication development with one of Speech and Language UK’s speech and language therapists. The therapists can give helpful information about children’s talking and communication development as well as tips on improving these skills. They can also offer advice on ages and stages and what can be done to help your child get the right support.
Speech and Language UK How to support your child
This information about how to support your toddler forms part of Speech and Language UK's guide to the typical stages of speech and language development. Toddlers develop language at different rates and understanding what is typical and what you can do to support your toddler can help you give them the best start on their journey to developing communication and language skills.
Follow the toddler's lead
Giving your toddler a chance to play with and explore the objects and toys around them gives you the perfect opportunity to follow their lead, see what they are interested in and talk about it. Talking about what your toddler is interested in shows them that you value what they are doing and helps them to make links with the words and sentences you say.
TCT Universally Speaking 0-5
Universally Speaking is a booklet with information about typical communication skills, including attention and listening and understanding; interactions and speech. Use the booklet to find out whether your toddler is on the right track, what helps them learn to talk and listen and what to do if you have concerns about any of their communication abilities.
Peep Communication and Language strand - evidence-based parenting programme for parents and children together to attend together. There is a focus on bonding, attachment and the quality of the home learning environment as well as a focus on communication and language. You have the opportunity to gain 3 credits towards NOCN Learning Together at home.
Peep Early Literacy Strand - evidence-based parenting programme for parents and children to attend together. There is a focus on bonding, attachment and the quality of the home learning environment as well as a focus on literacy. You have the opportunity to gain 3 credits towards NOCN Learning Together at home.
Labelling and Commenting
Using real word labels and commenting on what your toddler is interested in helps them to learn new words and understand how sentences work. Here NHS Tayside's Rhyming Robin and Chatty and Charlie share information about how to do this as well as many other top tips for learning words and developing language.
Copy, repeat, imitate
Copying your toddler's sounds, words and actions shows them you're interested in what they are saying and doing, encourages them to do more and shows them how conversations and communication works. Here NHS Lothian share ideas of what you can do to help your toddler's early communication skills.
Greater Manchester 10 Tips for Talking
The Greater Manchester (GM) 10 Tips for Talking are ten key messages to support the development of language and communication skills for babies and young children and can be used by everyone. Each tip is designed to give families and anyone working with children some small suggestions that can make a big difference and help give children the best start. Each message is based on sound research and is delivered by children.
Signalong provides training and resources to assist those with communication difficulties and English as an additional language.
Signalong is a key word sign-supported communication system based on British sign language and is used in spoken word order. It uses speech, sign, body language, facial expression and voice tone to reference the link between sign and word.
Cost: Free & £
Makaton sign and symbol resources
These free Makaton resources are available for you to access and use to support communication with your toddler. These symbols and signs help you to provide extra information and clues about what you are saying as well as support the development of essential communication skills such as attention and listening and understanding.
Small Talk helps parents turn daily activities with their toddler into new opportunities to build language skills. It includes a website featuring simple videos, tips and information to help chat, play and read every day. The activities include ideas around meal times and other daily routines such as going shopping.
Using visual support
Parents play a key role in supporting their toddler's language and communication skills in everyday life. Children learn about the world through their experiences and interests particularly within their play. Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust provide information and opportunities for families to learn more about developing their toddler's speech and language - this video introduces how to use visual support to help communication.
Leeds Speech and Language Therapy Toolkit
Leeds Community Healthcare's Speech and Language Therapy Toolkit contains advice, activities and general resources to help you with the development of your toddler's speech, language and communication skills.
Watch, wait, listen and respond
Watching, waiting, listening and responding is a powerful way that we can help toddlers develop early communication skills. Waiting for toddlers to take their turn or share what they are interested in can be difficult when we are busy getting on with life. However it is key to giving them opportunities to develop communication and language skills. This leaflet and video from the Speech and Language Therapy Service in Greater Glasgow and Clyde outlines why and how to wait and respond. It forms part of a wider series of useful information for parents, carers and professionals.
Developing Joint Attention
Birmingham Community Healthcare Speech and Language Therapists have produced this video to show you how to help develop your child's joint attention - this means being able to focus on the same thing as you at the same time. How to help your child develop joint attention through play is broken down to help you easily understand what to do step by step.
Now and Next Boards
Birmingham Community Healthcare Speech and Language Therapists have produced this video to show you how to use a 'now and next' or 'first and then' board to help your child understand what is going to happen next and to encourage them to do what you want them to do. It explains how using pictures can help if children are having difficulties with language.
Using Objects and Sensory Cueing
Birmingham Community Healthcare Speech and Language Therapists have produced this video to show you how to use objects and sensory cueing to link words, objects and routines. This helps children prepare for and anticipate what is going to happen next; supports language development; supports them to become engaged in a variety of daily routines.
Birmingham Community Healthcare Speech and Language Therapists have produced this video to show you how to use communication boards through play and everyday activities to supporting understanding and as a way to allow your child to communicate with you.
Creating Opportunities to Communicate
Birmingham Community Healthcare Speech and Language Therapists have produced this video to show you how to make small changes throughout the day to increase your child's opportunities to communicate and have a reason to communicate.
Signs and Symbols
Widgit provides symbols that can be used to support communication making information, documents and resources to be more accessible and inclusive. The symbols can be used for a variety of purposes such as creating communication books to share information; visual timetables to support understanding of structure and routine; task boards to support independent learning; pictures to develop vocabulary and to support children learning English as an additional language.
This website has information to support your understanding of how to use symbols including training resources, events and links to a network of organisations around the UK who offer advice and support.
There is also information for parents and carers to help them understand how they can use symbols to support their child.
Cost: £9/month upwards
Helping social communication development
You play a key role in supporting your toddler's language and communication skills in everyday life. Children learn about the world through their experiences and interests particularly within their play. Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust provide information and opportunities for you to learn more about developing your toddler's speech and language including this presentation about social communication.
Learning more than one language
Many children grow up learning more than one language. This information leaflet from NHS Forth Valley provides you with useful information and top tips about what you can do to help your toddler on their way to being bilingual or multilingual.
Speech Link Parent Portal
The Speech Link Parent Portal offers you advice, information and activities for developing your children’s understanding, talking and listening. It includes information about speech, language and communication, how these skills develop, activities and top tips videos.
Speech and Language Chatter Matters
This series of videos for parents and carers outlines how speech, language and communication skills develop; what families can do to support their baby; how these skills develop over time; children with speech and language needs and how to access information and support.
National Literacy Trust Bilingual quick tips
The National Literacy Trust has produced a series of bilingual quick tips for parents and practitioners to help children develop good talking and listening skills. There are lots of different languages. Copies can be downloaded and shared with families.
- Say hello to your new baby
- Dummies and talking
- Talk to your baby and child in your own language
- Making the most of television
- Talking with your baby
- Sharing songs and rhymes
- Playing with your baby
Widgit provides symbols that you can use to support communication such as creating communication books to share information; visual timetables to support understanding of structure and routine; task boards to support independent learning; pictures to develop vocabulary and to support children learning English as an additional language. Here you will find more information about how to use symbols at home to help communication and independence. It also include resources and ideas to get you started.