5 Ways Your Child’s Siblings Can Help With Their Speech Therapy

5 Ways Your Child’s Siblings Can Help With Their Speech Therapy

If you have a child that requires a speech therapist, you will doubtless look for as many experts and resources that you can find to support your child’s communication development. These could include your family doctor, speech pathologists, speech therapy sessions, support groups and online resources. These are all excellent options, but there is one source of help that could be much closer to home, and that is your other children.

Anyone who grew up with one or more brothers or sisters may recall those times as ones where you and your siblings seemed constantly at loggerheads, always seeking to blame the other, and all wishing we were an only child. These are all part of growing up and hopefully, now that you and your siblings are adults your relationship has matured and is now one of compassion and mutual respect.

Going back to childhood siblings, the evidence shows that a child’s brothers or sisters can be an enormous help to them if they are struggling with speech and language. Such is the positive influence that a sibling can have on a child’s communication development that many speech pathologists include the role of the sibling as part of their plan to achieve speech therapy goals.

To provide you with more insights into how a child can help their brother or sister who requires speech therapy, we have outlined below five ways that a sibling’s help can manifest itself.

Siblings Can Model Speech And Language

Part of learning speech and language is imitation and so, if a child’s sibling can model how to speak, then it can be a huge help to them if they are struggling. This can lead them to imitate how their brother or sister is communicating and hopefully learn multiple lessons from doing so. This is especially effective when the sibling is older and able to receive guidance from a speech pathologist regarding how to be an ideal speech and language model.

Siblings Can Participate In Games

If you search online you will find countless articles written by speech pathologists regarding the important role that playing games can have in a child’s language and communication development. It follows, therefore, that a sibling is in an ideal position to help their brother or sister by playing games with them. Within those games, they can also help teach them important lessons such as waiting their turn and asking questions.

Siblings Can Assist The Speech Pathologist To Determine What Speech And Language Issues Exist

A sibling is going to spend far more time with the child in question than the speech pathologist and this can provide an important benefit if the sibling can articulate to the speech pathologist how the child needing speech therapy communicates. Being able to provide examples of how their sibling struggles with speaking or being understood is invaluable when the speech pathologist is determining a speech therapy plan.

Siblings Can Help Their Brother Or Sister Understand Social Skills

Learning social skills is an important part of a child’s development, especially in the development of their communication. Having a sibling they can not only mimic or imitate but who can also give them some guidance and advice if they are old enough to understand, can be a huge advantage to the child with difficulties.

Siblings Can Help Carry Out Speech Therapy Goals At Home

This is more likely to apply when the sibling is a little bit older and thus able to understand what is required. Doubtless, the child receiving speech therapy gains a lot during sessions with their speech pathologist, but their sibling can extend that work. Whilst at home or outside playing in the garden, a sibling can advise, guide, and continue to help their brother or sister move closer to their speech therapy goals.