Saturday, October 18, 2014

Apple's First Sentence

Thank heavens, I now know that Apple WILL learn to talk! Yesterday she said her first spontaneous sentence, "I am duh n."

We've now had three speech therapy sessions and the first was way back in June before her last surgery, which was also the last until two weeks ago because we lost her spot during her recovery time and they didn't have any openings again until now. The therapist wanted her to play with barn animals and push a little car around making vroom vroom noises, but I put a stop to that. Apple is super smart. When the older girls sit with the books for a school lesson, Apple gets a book and her chair and wants to join us, too. When I asked the therapist what the point of the play was, she said to build a rapport. Well, we only have coverage for speech therapy until Nov. 30, so I finally laid it on the table.

I said, "I know this is going to sound strange, but you don't need to build a rapport with her. She spent her first 19 months in an orphanage, shows no stranger anxiety and is outgoing and friendly to all, while still being securely bonded to me. You are her teacher for one hour a week. Just sit her on the chair, tell her it's time to use her mouth and learn to talk, and she'll do it."

No surprise to me, it worked out VERY well. Apple is learning 1-3 new sounds per day and, after yesterday's first sentence, is finally grasping the concept of how to use speech and the necessity for it.

She is super smart and understands everything she hears and can follow complex, age appropriate, instructions. The issue of her speech seems to be completely motor. She struggles to find the right ways to move her mouth to make the sounds. The good news is that it's getting easier and easier for her the more she practices and gains new sounds. I'm sure she'll be a chatterbox soon.


Lynnea Hameloth said...

Good for you for laying down the law! My biggest gripe in ST with Ava is when the "play" a game. The therapists basically just have her talk while playing. Which she needs to do, but we do that at home!! The one week I took her and they played Go fish. I'm all for games but please do the therapy that I'm not trained to do!! I can play Go Fish!
Grr....I drive an hour for a half hour session, we need to fit as much therapy in there as possible!!
She will be talking in no time I'm sure! :)

K said...

That's exactly what irks me the most about all these therapy appointments from speech to OT to PT, it's all stuff I already do at home. What in the world did they go to school for anyway?

Jennie said...

So wonderful that you are Apple's advocate, and politely firm about it with the therapist. Often, the therapist go "by the book" so to speak - which works only some of the time.

Anonymous said...

Is she almost 3? Does she do sign language at all?