If you are concerned about your child's speech, you can call KidsAbility to have your child assessed. A Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP) will be your partner in assessing your child’s communication skills, evaluating your child’s developmental needs and planning the next steps with you in helping your child’s speech and language grow.
Parents and caregivers are experts on their child’s:
- Daily routines and responses
- Relationships with others
- Feelings and attitudes
- Challenges and successes
Parents and caregivers can share their knowledge and questions at the assessment. You may attend one or more appointments with the SLP, or with the SLP and other members of a multi-disciplinary team. You may be seen at a KidsAbility site, child care, or elsewhere in the community.
Preparing for an assessment can be helpful. As you interact with your baby or preschooler in everyday activities (e.g., mealtime, bath time, play), observe and record their communication. Try this at different times, on different days and with different partners.
How does your child get his or her message across?
- gestures or actions
- sounds and partial words
- mispronounced words, phrases or sentences
How well does your child understand language?
- names of things
- following directions
- repeating, pointing, gesturing
How well do you understand your child’s communication?
- sounds dropped
- substituted by other sounds
It may be helpful to let your child know that you will be with them in the assessment. Most assessments take up to 1 ½ hours so your child should be comfortable, fed and toileted before we begin. Please postpone when your child is sick.
Speech Language Pathologists are experts on communication development (e.g., speech, language, voice, fluency). The assessment approach an SLP takes depends on many factors including the child’s age, needs, comfort, and attention, to name a few. Most assessments include an interview, evaluation through interaction and play, informal checklists and standardized tests using engaging activities.