Entries by Deanna Swallow

Handling Aggression In Toddlers

Kevin cries hysterically, meanwhile Tommy holds a red fire truck above his head. Nobody saw what happened, but there are clear bite marks on Kevin’s right arm. If this scene has ever unfolded in your living room, you’re not alone. Parents often express worry about their toddler’s use of aggression when interacting with peers. It can […]

Helping Your Toddler Learn to Communicate

The first few years of your child’s life are a critical time in their language development. Research strongly supports that face-to-face time with caregivers and loved ones is one of the most powerful tool in language development. So how can parents help their toddlers learn to communicate? Here are 10 activities to encourage speech and […]

Encouraging Language Development While Reading To Your Child

Reading books to your child is an excellent way to encourage language development. Exposure to books has countless benefits, such as learning new vocabulary, organizing thoughts and ideas, learning new sentence structures, building narrative language skills, developing inference and problem solving skills, fostering imagination, social emotional development, and strengthening listening comprehension. Furthermore, reading to your […]

Turn-Taking and Language Development

Turn-taking is a foundation for speech and language development. Think of language as a back-and-forth exchange system: one person talks while the other listens, and vice versa. The ability to understand and demonstrate turn-taking is a critical step in building speech and language skills in children. It’s the framework for which children will ultimately use […]

Helping Your Child Deal with Losing A Game

One of the most common challenges I see when working with kids, is difficulty with losing.  Many rounds of Candlyland have ended in tears and scattered game pieces.  For kids, losing can feel unexpected and extremely frustrating.  However, it’s important to learn to handle losing (and winning) in order to successfully navigate friendships.  So how can […]

Kids & Vocal Nodules: What Parents Should Know

Approximately 4-6 out of every 100 children have a voice disorder.  Of the various disorders, vocal nodules is the most commonly cited in children.  By building healthy habits from the start, you can help keep your child’s voice healthy.  Read on to learn more about vocal nodules and how to keep your child’s voice healthy.  What […]

Building Your Child’s Speech & Language Skills During Halloween

As a speech-language pathologist, I love holidays for the language-rich opportunities they provide.  For starters, my kids reliably arrive to therapy sessions bursting with things to talk about, from Halloween costumes to anticipated candy.  And research supports that children learn best when they’re motivated and excited.  By incorporating speech-language goals into holiday activities, you can encourage […]

Is Biting Normal?

Parents often ask if it’s normal for their toddler to bite.  It can feel both concerning and upsetting for parents to find out that their child is biting others. If this sounds familiar to you, you’re not alone.  Here are a few guidelines and tips to consider when navigating your toddler’s biting habit. Consider Your […]

10 Ways to Build Your Child’s Vocabulary

Vocabulary development is a critical component in your child’s ability to interact with the world around them.  Children need the right words to effectively communicate their thoughts and ideas to others.  Strong vocabulary development also impacts listening and reading comprehension.  The more vocabulary words your child knows, the more likely they will comprehend what they are […]

Choosing the Right Toys to Promote Your Child’s Language Development: Part 2

With the holiday’s approaching, you may be looking for gift ideas for your little ones, or it may just be time to revamp the toy shelves.  Parents often askwhich toys will help their child’s speech and language skills develop.  Flash cards?… Baby Einstein?…Wi? In Part 1 of this blog, we talked about principles to consider […]