Saturday, November 12

Let's Talk

Hey everyone!

YAY! It's mid-November already and we're 35 days away from Xmas and 41 days away from 2012! Are u extremely excited?!

2011 has been a year with ups and downs for me.. I hope 2012 will be a better year for my family and loved ones. Sophia has started to talk (a lot) for the past... let's see... 5 months? The only problem is she refuses to be "pee-pee" trained.. she's only "poopy" trained. She knows how the whole potty routine is but she refuses to tell us when she wants to pee and just pee on her diaper. I'm at a loss and I don't wanna force her. I bet many mothers out there have this kinda experience... any tips you wanna share with me?

Sophia has started to count... she recognizes her numbers (1 - 3 for now) but the peculiar thing is, she refuses to say the word "seven"! I know todds at her age probably can't pronounce the "v" sound but she can say words with more than 2 syllabus already. She can say words like "apple juice", "papaya", "rice" (which sounds like "ice"), the parts of our body, (mouth, hair, head, arm, leg, hand, nose, eyes, etc...) and other random stuff. She started talking when we started her with Nick Junior cartoon shows. It motivated her, plus our constant "chit-chat" sessions with her as well made the entire process fun. My "pet peeve" when it comes to talking to kids is I don't do the whole baby talk. I cannot stand parents who constantly baby talk with their kids and they sound like humans that come from a total different planet! If you have heard me talking to Sophia, you probably would say I talk way too mature to her and she might not understand. TRUST ME, she does. Of cos, sometimes, I would use a little kiddish voice to talk to her, but most of the time, I'm straight up, talking normally. I'm firm with her, definitely. I'm the no-nonsense mom (which she hates, I know that) so she gets whatever she wants when my mom is at home. Everything would be "I-will-get-it-from-grandma" mode. She doesn't care about my existence when my mom's home...

I know of some kids who started talking way earlier than Sophia.. like at 13 months. Some would only talk after they turn 4. Sophia started walking at 11 months... and just before her 2nd birthday, she started calling "mama", "papa" and everyone to her was mama. Then slowly, after her 2nd birthday, she started "mimmy" (which meant "mummy") and the rest is history. My best friend, she frets over the fact my godson hasn't like "officially" started talking or even saying simple words.. and he recently turned 2. I told her, she's not the only mother fretting over this "how-come-my-child-isn't-talking-yet" matter... Some kids start early, some late. But this doesn't conclude that your child can't talk or will never speak for the rest of his/her life. Every child is different and we, as mothers, have to be aware of that. We must NEVER compare our kids with other kids or even compare all your children with each other. Remember our hands are not of the same length too. If you're worried and to lessen the stress level, bring your child to see a speech therapist. If your PD and all the therapists have confirm that nothing is wrong with your child, then you just have to be patient and wait. The day will arrive. I remember my mom telling me, my uncle (her eldest brother) spoke after he turned 4, and my husband's youngest brother only spoke after he turned 4 as well. Both turned out normal and doing very well in life!

1.  Interaction.
Have your child interact with other children. Playdates, bringing your child out (say, once a week) or even hanging out with relatives who has children of the same age as your kid would be motivating your kid to say his first words. It will come when you least expect it.

2.  Speak clearly.
I don't encourage speaking in doubles like "Baby, do you want some milk-milk?", "Would you like to play with that car-car?" or "Do you want to drink some soup-soup?" Seriously, moms.... don't do that. I know kids will end up saying things in doubles naturally but we have to stop them at an early age when they are learning. Kids are like sponges.. they absorb things faster than you can imagine. If they say "car-car", say, "No dear.. it's a car." Soon, they will know that's a "car" and not a "car-car".

3.  Don't fight with your spouse in front of your kid.
If you wanna trash things out with the man, do it when the child is sleeping, speak away from the child. By displaying anger infront of your child when speaking to the man, you will be showing to your child that "it's ok" to talk loudly or rudely to another person cos "that's how mom and dad speak to each other". Then when they want something from you, they might scream into your face to get something. Of cos, you can't accept such behaviour but not realising that you did the same thing to the man and your child happens to see it. On the other hand, some kids get traumatise seeing their parents talk roughly/fight and have a fear in speaking. They might be given the impression that talking is such a "scary" thing so therefore, "I don't wanna talk". Speak affectionately, show the growing child a loving environment and it will do him good.

4.  Don't force.
Don't start shaking your child out of frustrations and say "why aren't you talking? what's wrong with you?" Like I mentioned earlier, encourage. But don't say "baby, if you say mama, i will give you a candy." Encourage your child, "baby, say mama..." if your child looks at you, stoned, give an assuring smile and say "never mind, we'll try that again soon..." then just talk to him as per normal. Don't force and say things like "quick baby, say mama, say mama... quick, say mama..." and repeat like a broken record. You are gonna freak the child out!

5.  Enjoy the process.
Enjoy your time learning with your kid. Make the learning process enjoyable and fun! I paint with Sophia, draw, cut and paste and she loves it! Kick balls with them (ok, not their dad's) and just be happy. Read, sing songs, expose them to nature. A happy child will learn happily and can learn faster too! Don't make the whole process so stressful. If you're working mother, you're definitely gonna worry a lot. Don't start sending them to classes for all sorts of skills. Send them to one type of class slowly. The child's brain is developing and my flooding their grey matter with all sorts of skills can confuse them. It's healthy, I agree. But it's exhausting.

I hope my tips help! Enjoy your time bonding with your bub! Have a great week!


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