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My 5 Year-Old Has Difficulty Expressing Himself
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My 5 Year-Old Has Difficulty Expressing Himself

At home and in class, he has trouble answering a question: instead he says something else other than what an answer should be, like: "What did you read today?"
"The cars!"
"No, you played with the cars. What did you read?"
"Not fun."

Also he isn't socializing with his classmates. I know this is partly because we don't have much time to provide for playdates or things like that, but I'm trying to change that and my wife just wants to pay for things like Gymboree rather than put herself in what she perceives as an uncomfortable situation of having 'strangers' over or going to thier house, which she likes even less. I don't mind but I'd like to avoid carrying the burden of this responsibility alone.

Help?

jdk
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603946_tn?1333945439
If he is in public school I would recommend a diagnostician to check for speech and/or learning disabilities. The principal will know where to lead you for the next step
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642568_tn?1223326200
Been there, done that: it's not a physical concern.
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642568_tn?1223326200
Sppech (when he chooses to) is clear and getting progressively intricate at a normal level of advancement, especially when discussing things of interest to him, such as his favorite foods/shows/games. Only in those specific catagories is he having problems.
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642568_tn?1223326200
speech, that is.

As far as learning disabilites go, I don't see any traditional signs. Neither does his primary, and I've got a brother in-law who agrees. I'm in grad school for Clinical Psych and Neuropsych and have a pretty good antenna for learning disabilities; this is simply an extreme case of social phobia.

What I'm hoping for are some tips on getting him more involved.

jdk
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171768_tn?1324233699
how old is he?
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171768_tn?1324233699
never mind... i see in the title he is 5.
i'm not sure of social phobia. you say he has the problem at home as well?
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603946_tn?1333945439
I am trying to follow along with you here- How do we see social phobia if you are the only one he is speaking to at that moment? Do you mean because the question deals with what happened in a social setting? I still say there is glitch-  been there done that? what ? a speech eval?
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171768_tn?1324233699
when he does speak about things he likes, does it sound like he is repeating things he has heard before?
When it sounds like children are speaking out of context it is sometimes actually delayed echolalia. For example, in the example you provided you triggered a memorized response. Since you do not necessarily know the original context it does not make sense to you. Perhaps he recently read a story about cars.

http://www.iidc.indiana.edu/irca/communication/echolalidelay.html   can provide more of an explanation and some examples of the different types.

Honestly, based solely on what you describe, it sounds more like a language/developmental problem than a social problem. If it were social anxiety he would be more likely to not respond at all instead of giving an illogical answer that would call more attention to him.
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293420_tn?1243146538
You said that his speech is fine, but it sounds like he's language impaired to me. I'm an SLP in the public school system and 1/2 of my caseload (total of 53 students) are kids working on language, not speech.

I imagine that you had a speech-language clinician evaluate him, but did they only look at articulation? They should have tested his language skills with a screener and then a longer assessment if he didn't pass. We use the CELF-4 or the OWLS...do any of those sound familiar to you? There are many assessments that they may have used...just threw those out in case one rang a bell.

I have kids working on answering WH- questions (who, what where..etc), grammatically correct oral sentence structure, increasing vocabulary, and much, much more. These kids are "language impaired," meaning that their language skills are more than 1 standard deviation lower than their overall ability level (aka IQ or Full Scale).

Request a language evaluation and a full psychological eval. Then they can compare the scores and look at his non-verbal vs. verbal abilities.
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Avatar_m_tn
Hi, your concern is of many parents now a days. im not a professional but am a parent and uncle. its crazy to see a 3 year old that speaks perfect sentences just like he was a teenager. and it frustrates parents like you and me when our kids find it difficult to express them selves. like mine at moments of frustration sturads to find the right words. i have notice something in this last year maybe it can help you out. Me and my wife have changed some bad habits and ill list them.
1. speak to your kid like an adult do not use words like blankey or binkey or nana(for grandmother) complete sentence and explain camly and thourghly.
2. dont try to answer for him (like you want juice baby and son nodes yes) ask him would you like something to drink if yes ask what would you like. then say show me where it is and what it looks like. in other words interact.
3. me and my wife where anti social so abviously my son was too. going to get togethers with grown ups is not necessarly showing social skills to your son. invite parents from school so their kid interacts with your kid outside of school. only one kid at a time because many kids may intimidate him. one on one on the other hand gives him the time to show off toys or interact and use language skills more.
4.the park, barnes and noble book store, church class on sundays for kids is a great place to make new friends.

this are only some of the methods we have used along with reading and make him read at night (or should i say let him build his own story) my son is only 4 so he cant read yet but he recognises many words.
we have tryed speech therapy, counseling but nothing worked. but then we noticed how kids are quick to pick up bad habits from other kids. so why not use it to our advantage and let our son engage in conversation with kids that speak well. sometimes it was frustating because there are kids that never slow down or quit talking but soon enough he caught up.
he is not perfect speaker but its a lot better. God bless
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