What do we do?

tykeTALK’s focus is prevention and early identification of speech, language and swallowing problems.  We believe that the earlier we can help children develop their communication skills, the better they will be able to interact with family members and other important people in their lives. 

When children are referred to tykeTALK, they first have an assessment of their speech and language skills, by a Speech-Language Pathologist, licensed by the College of Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists of Ontario.  To learn more about how to access and what happens during a speech and language assessment, click on Getting Help.

At tykeTALK we believe that parents are their children’s best teachers. They are the ones who are with their children and know their children the best. For those children who require help with their speech and language development, we offer a range of therapy programs. In all of our programs, the child’s parents and/or caregivers have a very important role.

Our programs include:

  • parent /caregiver education groups
  • programs for home and/or your child’s childcare centre,
  • direct therapy sessions either individually or in a group
  • monitoring of your child’s progress through reassessment, or periodic consultation in person, or by telephone 

Therapy/services may be given directly by a Speech and Language Pathologist who is licensed by the College of Audiologists and Speech-Language Pathologists of Ontario or by a trained assistant who is supervised by a Speech and Language Pathologist. To learn more about speech and language therapy click on Getting Help.

What is the difference between speech and language?

You might hear the terms speech and language being used to describe your child’s communication development or to describe any delay that may be present. 

These two terms, although both important aspects of communication are somewhat distinct.

Language refers to vocabulary development, grammar and sentence structure, the ability to understand what words mean and the ability to use words to communicate one’s needs.  As part of grammar development, we look at how children learn correct tenses and correct pronouns.  Many of us know children who say “I losted it.”, instead of “I lost it.” or “He goed there.” instead of “He went there.”.  This is part of normal language development in young children, however it typically should not continue beyond the preschool years.

Another area of language development is social communication. Social communication describes the way a child uses words to interact with other people. Some of the areas of development of social language include the following:

  • Pointing to an object that is wanted, before being able to say the word.
  • Knowing how to ask for something by using words.
  • Using words to tell a story in a way that is easy for the listener to understand.

Speech refers to the way we produce sounds and the rules for putting those sounds together.  In English there are vowels and consonants and most children who have speech sound difficulties will experience problems producing certain consonants.  Some children will have difficulty with vowel sounds, but that is less common. 

Children develop speech sounds over a period of years.  In the earliest months, they produce mainly vowels and then consonants that are easy to produce, like “m”, “p”, and “b”.  As they grow and as their language develops, they produce more difficult consonant sounds, like “f”, “s”, “th” and “r”.  By seven years of age, children should be able to produce all sounds correctly.

To schedule an assessment for your child complete our Online Referral Form or call: 519-663-0273 or Toll Free: 1877-818-TALK.