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Myth debunked: Growing out of a language disorder

Many parents start to worry when they notice that their child is not talking as much as other children. They chat about it with their social support network and, of course, their family and friends try to help by saying there’s nothing to worry about and know of other children who took a long time to start talking… but now they cannot get them to stop. So, the parents feel a little more at ease and decide that their child will just ‘grow out’ of any language difficulty.

However, today it is known that a child who starts school with limited language skills is very likely to struggle with their language throughout the rest of their school years and even into adulthood. Children with a language disorder find it challenging to catch up with their peers’ language skills and often maintain a language gap of around two to three years behind. Teachers in particular must remember that ‘language is the foundation for learning’.

Another popular myth is that language disorders are worse in bilingual homes. A child who is exposed to two languages is not going to develop a language disorder because of this, or make one worse. Bilingual parents should continue to talk with their child in whatever language they feel most comfortable. The aim is for children to be hearing a lot of high-qua­lity language, no matter what language that may be.

For more myths about Developmental Language Disorders, visit: https://bit.ly/2N4VTUK .

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