Monday, December 8, 2008

Speeching of Lilia ...

I love the school Lilia attends. It's the local public elementary school, and it is absolutely terrific. Every school night they send home a book for me and Lilia to read together. Lilia is showing signs of being a perfectionist, and she gets easily frustrated when she doesn't know a word we're trying to read. It's frustrating for both of us, because rather than trying to sound it out, she starts to whine and cry. The teacher sent home a very helpful flyer to help me during those frustrating times when she doesn't know a word. The flyer suggested that rather than continually saying "sound it out," try using the following phrases:
  • Did you have enough words?
  • Can you find the word _________?
  • Does that look right?
  • What sound/letter does it start with?
  • Can you find the tricky part?
  • Could it be __________?
  • Why did you stop?
  • Look at the pictures.
  • Try that again.

This has helped immensely. When I think about it, I'm really quite amazed that the system is set up to educate, and care, that every child has a quality education. I'm sure it falls short sometimes too, but I've been very appreciative of the help Lilia has received.

Lilia only spoke two words at her 2nd birthday. Being a first-time parent, I assumed that was normal. I found out otherwise after her 2-year-old doctor visit. We signed her up for speech therapy with Kids on the Move, a non-profit group. When she turned 3, she qualified for early intervention preschool at the local elementary school, as well as a weekly visit with a speech therapist. Her improvement seemed gradual at first, but last week she graduated from needing any speech therapy at all. She now tests on a level appropriate for her age.

Along the way, Lilia also found her voice. She used to be timid of speaking, afraid that people wouldn't understand her. Now she barrels into discussions of all sorts. I think that's due in part to a good friend she made while in preschool.

I know it's not my talents that have helped her improve her speech. When I tried to help her, I made her feel worse about her speech. However, Mr. Clyde, the speech therapist at the school, had a gentle re-assuring manner that encouraged Lilia's development. On Lilia's behalf, I'm thankful to the Alpine School Board for employing a caring speech therapist and providing early intervention assistance.


Kim said...

I helped Lilia give the prayer and theme in primary on Sunday. She is so sweet and soft spoken, but I nearly fell off my seat when I was sitting next to her during singing time! She belted out those songs like nobodies business! She new all the words and was not shy to show it. I'm sure if I knew anything about it, I would know that she hit some notes too! She is so wonderful.
BTW...we need our last nursery are losing 15 of them to sunbeams in 3 weeks!

Morkthefied said...

Thanks for that, Kim. I've noticed Lilia likes to sing, but between you and me, I'm not sure she hits the right notes. Makes it all the more fun to listen.

I do need a re-cap. Maybe I'll do a special spotlight nursery day for the older kids the last day they're with us. I'll miss them! They've all grown up so much! You should hear how well they all sing now.