Articulation problem is a common phenomenon in majority of toddlers between the age group of two to five years. It is basically the toddler’s own way of learning new words and vocabulary by repeating and muttering words and putting them together in a meaningful sequence to make a sentence. The most pleasing thing to know about it is that the articulation problem subsides with time. The toddler becomes normal as he grows older without any medical intervention. It is also vital to realize that articulation problem in toddlers are of different types and some of them can be serious too. So, each of these problems should be handled differently.
a. Delay in speech
Children generally start speaking by the time they reach their second birthday. Their vocabulary during such times mostly includes monosyllabic words or three word sentences. By the time the toddler reaches the age of one and half years, seven to eight word sentences are common in kids. Since, the vocabulary of the toddler is increasing day by day, he might also include physical gestures along with short speeches to express him or herself properly. The toddler might look frustrated as well in the effort as he or she might find it difficult to express something.
Ways to deal
Parents can play a major role in handling speech or language delay in kids. Instead of being unnecessarily panicked. They need to chat with their toddlers. Even if the kids do not reciprocate back, parents need to continue with their attempt. It is also important to read out to the toddlers. This way new words get included in their vocabulary and the children starts developing speaking power with time.
b. Stuttering in toddlers
Stuttering is not uncommon in growing toddlers who are in their stage of learning how to talk. It seems that they struggle in order to pronounce a word. So, they stammer and repeat a word over and over again before they finally pronounce the word. Stuttering is also characterized by mispronouncing one or more words, hesitating to pronounce such words and replacing such words with similar sounding words that are sometimes meaningless. This phase is mostly observed in toddlers when they are extremely stressed, exhausted or excited.
Ways to deal
Parents need to be extra alert when they witness that their toddlers stutter. You might feel that it is your responsibility to correct your kid with the right pronunciation when he or she stutters. But this is wrong. Neither should you nor anybody else should interrupt and correct the toddler. Let the kid learn the right pronunciation on his or her own. Restrain from trying to command the kid to slow down or repeat the words again or anything like that. On the contrary it will be much more effective if you could read out to your kid regularly. Talk with your kid regularly and be particular to talk a lot. Be sure that when you talk your way of articulation should be slow and absorbing. This is how the toddler will be able to grasp each word distinctly and eventually learns up new words correctly.
c. Muddling pronunciation in kids
One of the most prominent articulation problem in kids is that they muddle words while speaking. This is commonly found in toddlers who are in the primary stages of learning and speaking skills. Muddled pronunciation signifies that the kids often jumble up words when they speak. Ultimately what they say becomes difficult to understand by the adults. Sometimes toddlers also keep on babbling meaninglessly. Frankly speaking, this is not a problem at all but an indication that your toddler is progressing. This is a phase when the toddler tries to get acquainted with the things that he or she is learning which is a new language in this case. So, the repetition and the babbling is the way of absorbing the new words in the toddler’s vocabulary.
Ways to deal
Speech experts suggest that it is essential for the parents to speak to the toddlers in adult tones too along with ‘baby talks’ that they incorporate in order to develop parental bonding. Moreover, speaking slowly and clearly is also important for the betterment of the toddler’s vocabulary. But in the process never force your kid to learn something. It is a natural process and the toddler will learn in his or her own way.