As a Mogul Mom or Momprenuer, you know the power that communication has on running a successful business. You probably spend the majority of your day on the phone speaking with clients and colleagues, drafting impactful messages, and writing emails, memos, blogs, and business plans. In short, being able to effectively communicate your thoughts and ideas is one of the most valuable life skills.
You want the same for your child. During your child’s formative years, there’s no better time to establish a strong foundation of speech and language skills. From literacy to language comprehension, articulation to social interactions, it’s imperative to support your early language learner and ensure they’re reaching age-appropriate milestones.
But how do you help your child grow and flourish into an effective communicator while balancing a full time job and busy schedule?
The Importance of Being Involved in Your Child’s Development
Let’s face it, we’re all living pretty hectic lives. From work to errands to family and friends, it can be difficult to find time to give your child the personalized, one-on-one attention they may need. However, your role in helping set your child up for success is invaluable.
Research has shown that when parents play an active role in their child’s speech and language development, children show much greater levels of progress. This is especially true for children that may be struggling with their speech and language skills.
If your child is already receiving help from a speech therapist, they’re probably only seeing them for one to two hours a week, at most. However, no one spends more time with your child than you, and it’s important that practice and skill building continues to happen at home.
Think of all the new skills and knowledge it took you to run your business. Maybe you were learning how to effectively use social media to promote your product. Or perhaps you’ve had to master new design tools, or CRM platforms, or customer acquisition channels. Each of these took constant practice, patience, and reinforcement.
How to Help Your Child Succeed
Below are a few tips and best practices busy parents can use to stay actively involved and help their child from home:
- Making Reading a Routine: It might sound obvious, but reading to your child on a regular basis is one of the most effective ways to improve their language skills. Plus, it’s a great way to wind down and spend quality bonding time with your child after a stressful day. One study showed that when young children read just one book each day, they were exposed to nearly 300,000 words prior to reaching Kindergarten. The benefits of reading are limitless: it helps stimulate your child’s imagination, expand their vocabulary, and improve the speech, language and listening skills critical to their classroom performance. Learn more tips for making reading fun and enjoyable here.
- Exercising: Why not use the time you spend exercising your body to help exercise your child’s mind? When children are engaged in a physical activity, parts of their brain are activated that help them retain new skills and knowledge. Whether you’re pushing a stroller on a nice afternoon run, or have your kiddo strapped to your bicycle, use the natural world to help incorporate language into your conversation. Ask your child to name and describe certain objects that you hear or discover, such as, “what color is that house?” or “what does that sign mean?” If your child is a little older, ask thought-provoking questions like, “how tall do you think that tree is?” Additionally, if you’re a yogee, have your child join you. This is a great way to help them practice verbal directions by instructing them how to strike different poses.
- Online Speech Therapy: If your kiddo needs some extra help with their speech and language skills, mostly likely your doctor will recommend seeing a speech language pathologist (SLP). However, finding time to visit your SLP can be challenging. Most clinics are only open during 9-5 business hours, and the commute and waiting times can take valuable time out of your day. What if you could access an experienced and licensed speech therapist with a click of a button and from the comfort of your home?Online speech therapy provides a ton of convenience and affordability advantages. Best of all, it’s easy to fit appointments within you and your child’s schedule, whether that’s Tuesday nights after dinner or Saturday mornings before housecleaning. Research also shows that online speech therapy is just as effective as more traditional, in-person therapy
- At-Home Practice: There are many ways parents can incorporate helpful speech therapy exercises into their child’s daily life. These can be a natural part of you and your child’s conversations, and it doesn’t have to take hours out of your day. I’ve created a YouTube series with a host of exercises and strategies parents can use to reinforce best practices at home.
About Leanne Sherred, M.S. CCC-SLP:
Leanne calls Austin, Texas home but studied Speech and Hearing Sciences at the George Washington University in Washington, D.C. and gained her Master’s in Speech-language pathology from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. She has worked in pediatric outpatient clinics, schools, early intervention, and home health. Leanne is currently the President and Founder of Expressable, an online speech therapy company that envisions a modern and affordable way for anyone who needs speech therapy to access these vital services.