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Total Joint Rehab Class
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Speech Therapy for Children

Do you feel as if you child has reached all of the developmental milestones for communication? Do you have concerns about his or her speech and the ability to verbally express his or her needs?

The questions listed below may help you evaluate your concerns:

  • Is your child talking and interacting like other children the same age?
  • Without difficulty, can you understand what he or she wants or is trying to tell you?

If you answered "no" to either of these questions, your child may need to be evaluation by a speech-language pathologist. The evaluation would determine if there is a problem that could benefit from therapy with a speech-language pathologist.

What is a speech-language pathologist?

A speech-language pathologist (also know as a speech therapist), has specialized post-college training and education to focus on an individual's ability to communicate functional needs. Speech therapists use a variety of means to help patients improve their communication skills, such as:

  • verbal expression
  • cognitive skills
  • speech generating devices
  • augmentative books and materials
  • signs and gestures

Communication and speech disorders

Communication challenges can affect children's speech, language, and voice. Some reasons that children participate in speech therapy include:

  • articulation problems
  • language delays
  • developmental disabilities
  • stuttering
  • voice problems
  • cleft palate
  • traumatic brain injury
  • cerebral palsy
  • hearing impairment
  • autism
  • jaw rehabilitation - a program with oral motor treatment designed to develop behaviors of the jaw needed for development of biting and chewing skills for patients who may have oral motor delay, or have difficulties following trauma, stroke, a surgical procedure, or any craniofacial condition that has impacted the development of feeding skills.

Developmental Milestones

Every child is unique, and infants and children develop at different rates. Your child may normally develop faster or more slowly. In general, listed here are some of the milestones your child should reach within the approximate time frame.

Birth to 1 month

  • can suck and swallow
  • smiles and coos when happy and comfortable
  • cries when unhappy and uncomfortable
  • reacts to movement

1 to 2 months

  • makes little deep throat noises frequently
  • calms down, especially when a male is talking
  • stops and listens to noises, such as bells or ringing

3 months

  • follows movement by turning head
  • looks at you and watches your face
  • smiles, coos or gurgles
  • startles to loud noises

6 months

  • cries when hungry or uncomfortable
  • tries putting everything into mouth
  • turns head toward sounds
  • babbles or squeals
  • laughs out loud

9 months

  • responds to own name
  • knows care-givers from strangers
  • imitates sounds
  • says "mama" or dada"

12 months

  • plays "peek-a-boo"
  • waves bye-bye
  • shows affection
  • says a few words besides "mama" and "dada"
  • loves to hear own voice
  • feeds self with fingers

18 months

  • loves to talk a lot but frequently is hard to understand
  • imitates sounds and rhythms, such as "patty cake"
  • likes to help
  • lets you know what he or she wants
  • points to things when named

2 years

  • listens to short stories
  • turns pages of a book
  • copies another child's play
  • has about 15-50 words in working vocabulary
  • responds to action directions
  • uses two-word sentences (usually)

3 years

  • has a well-developed vocabulary
  • demonstrates correct use of plurals and past tense
  • talks and usually understood
  • uses three-word sentences
  • tells you who is a boy or a girl
  • can name six body parts

4 years

  • ask yes, no and "wh" questions
  • plays make-believe
  • takes turns
  • draws a face
  • names some colors
  • combines two simple sentences, such as "Jenny and Joe are happy"

5 years

  • plays organized games
  • talks very well
  • enjoys taking turns in play
  • follows a 3-step direction
  • draws a person with 6-8 body parts
  • can count to 10
  • understands the meaning of many words

For developmental milestones beyond age 5 years, please contact Rice Rehab Center for more information


For more information, please contact:

Rice Rehabilitation Center
311 SW 3rd St.
Willmar, MN 56201

Lynn Stier, Director

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