Helping them to communicate
Thanks Clag - I knew t had a 'proper' name. We used ones on a plastic card that had velcro on the back so that the child could actively played it. I've sent the email to my friend and will let you know.
You may find this site useful:
Hey - by 'eck - that's a great sign! It's the small steps that are sometimes the most rewarding!
I've heard back from my friend and her advice is: Pressure your consultant/GP into speeding up the referral. 6 months is the average but you can get in quicker if the GP puts you on a fast track. She did speech therapy with the support of a local charity and Makaton with her son and it took a while for him to 'grasp' it but it helped with his overall development... so much so that when she finally got round to seeing the consultant he asked her - why is she here?
Are there any organisations in your local area?
If you think that your son can handle the cue cards- try it and see how he gets on. You can always say that you've tried that method when you get to the specialist.
I'm no expert but I'd give the cards a try by 'eck, can't see any harm in it. Great that he's trying to vocalise too.
Hi by 'eck,
I suggest asking if there is a pre school child development service (CDS) locally - a joint service run by paeds, speech therapy and early years teachers ( and psychologists if you need one) for younger children with higher levels of additional needs. Communication and behaviour are high on their list. Your paediatrcian or HI teacher (if you you have one? not sure ), or even Health Visitor should know, or try googling your council's family services directory ( not all FSDs are up and running yet).
The CDS would be in a good position to support you in all these areas that you highlight and help you paln for entry into nursery/ school.
by 'eck, it's hilly wrote (see)
We tried going to a group run at the local sure start centre but most of the kids who went seemed to have problems because of the home circumstances rather than a physical problem.
Yup. If you're making the effort to do as much as you can and researching stuff yourself, by the time you get to see a specialist, chances are you'll know as much about your kid's condition, and how to work round it, as s/he ever will. I've heard this said time and time again by people with various complex medical conditions: that they seem to know more about it than the so called specialist. My mum has MS and every new treatment/drug she's got over the years has been something that she or my dad researched and found out about themselves, usually via internet support groups, then printed the info off to take in to the doctors to ask about. Most times, the doctor/s didn't know anything about it and went on to the same websites my folks had already been at to find out more about it!
This isn't intended as a criticism of doctors, specialists or the NHS in general, it's just an observation. I suppose it's just a case of you can concentrate all of your efforts on yourself/your child but they have a huge caseload of different people to deal with.
Sign language, picture boards, and if he's going to have a long term problem with speech then (once he's old enough to learn to read) word boards as well. I have a friend of a friend who is well above average intelligence but has severe cerebral palsy and very poor coordination which makes sign language impossible. She uses a word board to communicate. 200 or so core words, some core sentences and phrases, and then A-Z letters to spell out stuff that isn't on the board. Laborious but effective.
Dealing with tricky behaviour? Same as you would with a 'normal' kid. I know a couple of 'disabled' kids whose behaviour is utterly atrocious cause their parents feel sorry for them and make allowances due to their disabilities. They have turned into vile little horrors and it's not really their fault. From what I've seen, 'disabled' kids who are subject to the same behavioural expectations as their siblings seem to turn out best with regards to their manners and overall personality.
That's great by 'eck! How is your daughter responding to the new way of teaching him?
2 of my boys are on the autistic spectrum and whilst intelligent and able had problems with communication............the eldest was delayed a bit in speech but even when they had good speech it still hid a problem with communication and processing of language........which led to frustration and bad behaviour
we did use the picture system.........the pictures were just over an inch square and then laminated and velcose on the back...........if you needed the child to do certain things like get dressed...........you just velcroses the pictures in order to the strip............when they do one thing they put the picture in the box at the bottom............so they can just work on one thing at a time.............
with mine they would get over worked up about going to play ........so if they had a sequence of events......eg get dressed.have breakfast,,,teeth then shoes........then play........they knew exactly what was happening and they could keep more calm.......
they used this for years....and a version in school............seems silly to use pictures for an older child who can read and write..but it helped their understanding.......
my youngest is taking 10 GCSE's next year and will pass them all at c or above.......but he needed this picture reminder until he was about 10.......
the eldest had extreme behaviour difficulties as he got anxious whenever he was with children his own age ..........this is really hard for parents as no one likes to see their child being cut off from their peers because they are attacking them.........the earliest they can get help for it the better......so if he needs help in nursery school he gets it......as its hard to get a good school
have you tried posting on the special needs board on Mumsnet talk? you may get more answers on there as there is quite a dedicated group of people who post on there and support each other. http://www.mumsnet.com/Talk/special_needs
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