Saturday, May 23, 2009

Communications skills

We have been monitoring Tommy's speech and language development since he was 6 month old because it is very common that kids with T21 can have problems in this area. We also introduced sing language to him at a very young age because it helps kids to learn more words faster.

Signing has many benefits, such as: increase self-esteem, reduce frustration for parents and babies, enhance language skills, and increase IQ. Tommy is currently signing "all done” and "More". He started to sing weeks before to our trip to Panama and he constantly does it now. He is learning to sign "milk". Maybe he will soon have a whole vocabulary in sing language. I have seen other kids who by age 0f 2 sing 30 or more words. We would like that Tommy could develop sign language as an extracurricular skill. See the video below, Tommy is signing "all done" and his variation of "more" (he claps and holds his hands).

According to the last assessment, Tommy's comprehensive language is in the average range for a kid of his age. Currently, he understands English and Spanish. His expressive communication has a mild delay, it could be because he has mild decrease muscle tone in his mouth and he is learning English and Spanish at the same time. As a bilingual person, I know that learning two languages is not easy, but it is beneficial. It is easier when kids learn a second language when they are little because they pick it up faster and they don't have accent. Be bilingual increases the IQ. It also gives better opportunities in this global world.

We thought it would take longer to hear Tommy's first word beside Ma-ma and Da-da, but he started to say “hi” at the end of his 12-month, but we didn't believe until our ST confirmed it to us. We were so excited because of his first word, and then on May 15, we were watching a Spanish program for kids about the water. The last word in the program was "agua"(water). Tommy just repeated "agua" with a perfect Spanish accent. I immediately told him say "agua" and he repeated. Days later, I took him for a walk and I was showing him the lake and I told him look at the "agua" (water) and Tommy again said "agua". I will try to capture the moments when he is saying hi and "agua". Our boy keeps surpassing our expectations.


Miriam Kauk said...

I enjoyed your video of Tommy practicing his signs. He is so engrossed in the video! And doing quite a good job with copying the motions.

Rosa Maria said...

Hi Miriam,

We are amazed of our boy because he truly pays attention; even although, he is so little. We have seen this since he was a newborn. He sometimes prefers a book rather than a toy.

Baby Signing Time is his favorite video. I like to watch how Tommy tries to improve his signs every time he sees the video. He is a perfectionist!

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