Thursday, August 27, 2009

How SHOULD an almost three year old speak?

Today when I dropped Cooper off at school the lead teacher stopped to talk to me about him. There is one day left of being a Toddler 1 and then he is officially a Toddler 2! She wanted to talk to me about Cooper's speech. She had been out for 3 weeks, and in that time Cooper's vocabulary has exploded. Which she acknowledged, but she also wanted to mention that she has noticed certain speech patterns that MIGHT be indicative of a speech impediment. He has had a slight lisp, and a few words that he pronounces a little funny. But I had assumed that it is mostly due to being, well, TWO YEARS OLD. In comparison to the other kids his age he seems to be speaking as clearly, or as UNclearly, and has the same level of vocabulary.

She acknowledged that each child develops differently, and each kid talks differently at the beginning. Some kids can't say the letter R, some the letter L. Some say "basketti" for "spaghetti" like I did until my dad straightened me out. But I have not felt that I was hearing anything with Cooper worthy of early intervention.

I appreciate that she wanted to have the conversation. However, in my world, where if you present a problem to me, my instinct is to SOLVE THAT PROBLEM. Do NOT present a situation that MIGHT be a problem. But since you are not a speech pathologist, you don't really know, but you think you should mention it, just in case in 6 months it appears it really is a problem. Either it is or it is not a problem. I don't have time and energy for maybe. If you think it is a problem and you have recommendations for what to do, GREAT. Share and we can move on. If not, don't mention it. Don't even plant the seed. I don't need to spend the brain power on MAYBE.

I truly don't think Cooper has any speech impediment. He is almost 3. He talks like very other 2 - 3 year old I have contact with. But we will keep an eye on it, or ear as it were, and maybe we will mention it to our pediatrician the next time we see him. But just having to have that conversation has made me a little crazy. Since he was a preemie (not that you would know it to look at him now) he could have tongue control issues. We have already seen it with his eating habits. It could have an affect on his speech. But I really don't think it is an issue.

So I will get over being crazy about this, and in another day new teachers will be involved and we will see what they have to say after a month of dealing with Cooper.

In the meantime I have all I can do to keep up with his growing vocabulary and his obsession with the Elmo Potty Time DVD. Seriously, after 12000 viewings the Statue of Liberty would be potty trained. My kid? Not yet.


km said...

It's worth keeping an eye on. Be really grateful for any teacher or caregiver who notes any deviance. they can be a great resource. Now not every one of them will be right but at least you know they care enough to bring it to your attention.
Our neighbor's kid was very disturbed. His daycare never outright said to his mom that there was a problem, only pointed out his breaking of the rules. Many violent episodes and late testing later he has , without a doubt, borderline personality disorder. I had an uncomfortable discussion with her and encouraged her to have him tested. It's not easy to speak up.
I'm sure that your little fella will be just fine. You are right, they do all develop differently. I have two who are totally different.
It's an adventure:)

km said...

that should be deviation, not deviance. Deviance is for my two scallywags:)

Dproudmama said...

Caring as you do about Cooper, this is stressful as a "maybe", at a stressful time for you. Yet, I do feel it is good to be forewarned. And trust your intellect to tell you when/if this is a problem. No educator would ever validate my suspicions about our child's learning style and it delayed diagnosis too long. You are doing a fine, fine job.

Chip said...

Skepticism has it's place. Some one immersed in little kids all day may have some insight. Don't dismiss them, but do certainly take the insight as a "hmmm, maybe, keep a watch out."

Fire off the alarms and run about flailing arms wildly in the air? Nah. Tuck it away as a, if it doesn't change in a year address it.

I have a son who potty trained in the back yard one summer. At 3 years old. As opposed to his sister who at 2 said, "Enough with this diaper non-sense. Panties, something in a high cut PowerPuff Girls motif, please. My legs look short enough as it is for goodness sake. I blame you, Mother."

Chip said...

BPD... in a child? How old? Uh... just noting that the DSMIV TR does not allow for the diagnosing of most disorders in children beyond those specifically categorized as childhood disorders.

witchypoo said...

Capture all those cute pronunciation quirks on video while you can, so you can embarrass him in his teens! If it's a tongue issue, I expect that growing motor control will finesse those sounds. And potty training? What's in it for him? Mine was four before I saw the light of potty training in his eyes.