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General Information for Parents and Carers

  • Often children need to be taught how to communicate well, or differently, and this will probably take time.

  • Speech and language therapy is a therapy and not a treatment. This means that the things speech-language pathologists (speech therapists) do are more like the sorts of things teachers do. We might use toys, jigsaws, drawing paper, musical instruments and other games and activities to help your child.

  • Because what we do is a therapy this means that there are no instant cures. Therefore, your child will need your ongoing help. Because the speech-language pathologist will only see your child for a short time each week it’s important that other adults continue to practice the therapy games and activities throughout the week. You need to be committed to doing this work.

  • Not all communication difficulties need the speech-language pathologist to work directly with your child. There are lots of ways a speech-language pathologist can help. For example, giving advice leaflets, providing games and activities that help to improve communication skills, and advising nursery or school teachers on ways they can help. Sometimes a Speech Therapy Technician or Assistant does the work. Sometimes someone in nursery or school might work directly with your child, using the activities recommended by the speech-language pathologist.

  • The communication skills we teach will probably be new for your child. They might be difficult to learn at the start. So, there might be a need for breaks from any direct therapy to allow your child to firm up what they’ve learnt. Research shows us that breaks from therapy are useful to help children strengthen what they’ve learnt. A speech-language pathologist might see a child for a few weeks and then give them a break for a few weeks. After this, they will see the child again. If necessary they will then begin another block of therapy.

  • Remember! Learning to communicate should be fun. We want our children to become confident talkers. Speech and language should be associated with pleasurable experiences. So…have fun together. The games and activities the speech-language pathologist gives you are designed to be fun. Whenever possible, they are also designed to fit into your everyday routine.

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