The executive director of Talking Tipps Africa Gift Ayoka has emphasised the need for parents to pay a critical attention to speech and language development since it is the foundation of education.
Ayoka who doubles as a speech and language therapist wants parents to urgently seek professional help if their ward experiences difficulties with their speech at 15 months.
The Executive director of Talking Tipps Africa foundation warns failure to do so could derail the academic progress of such children.
She gave the advice after donating communication milestones booklets to the Princess Marie Louis Children's Hospital with support from the National Security Minister Ken Dapaah, Dakye Company Limited and other sponsors to enable the facility to track the communication development of children from the ages of 0-5 years.
“Research shows that early detection and intervention of communication delays leads to better outcomes, sets the child up for academic success and improves the child’s social skills, she said.
“Recent research on brain development reminds us that, by age 3, most of the major brain structures are mature and it becomes more difficult to make significant changes in a child’s development after this age.”
She added “We therefore urge all parents, caregivers, preschool teachers to refer children who have no words by 15 months to a speech therapist or a pediatrician for screening.”
Ayoka further advised the Ministries of Health and Education to adopt the communication milestones booklet as part of child welfare clinic, preschools and kindergarten communication skills tracking tool.
Dr. Maame Yaa Nyarko, who received the booklets on behalf of the Princess Louis Marie Hospital s reiterated the importance of assessing the speech and language development of children.
She further stated that, "identifying challenges early and intervening early reduces speech delay and learning difficulties."
About Talking Tipps Foundation
Talking Tipps Africa Foundation is a not-for-profit organization, which trains parents, preschool teachers and other pediatric professionals.