Star* asks:

My son is 3 1/2 years old with a speech delay and at times aggressive and defiant behavior. He was tested for autism, but does not have it?

He loves us, loves kids, and loves to play.
In Topics: Speech and language issues, Special needs
> 60 days ago



Feb 18, 2011
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What the Expert Says:

Hello and thank you for writing to Just Ask!

I know from experience that life with a child with defiance can be very trying.  Especially when they are so young and have so much to say, but cannot.  In my family, the use of sign language in combination with speech/language therapy proved to be most helpful.  It allowed our son, who had some speech and language difficulties, the ability to express himself calmly and accurately, thus reducing frustration and behavioral outbursts. We used it as a bridge until the speech and language abilities could catch up with his cognitive skills.  We also let him use art and play as a way to communicate, too.

Also, you may find some help with these great websites, books and articles, as well.

KIDLUTIONS for a recent article on child aggression

Michele Borba  The Big Book of Parenting Solutions

The Birth to Five Book by Brenda Nixon

Proactive Parenting by Sharon Silver

Good luck and know that there are many avenues of help.  Let us know if we can be of further assistance.

Louise Sattler, NCSP
Nationally Certified School Psycholgist
Owner of Signing Families™

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Additional Answers (1)

Vikkile writes:
I have been a daycare provider ( and mom!) for 17 years.  It seems to me that the children I have with speech delays typically act out with more aggression.  I truly think it is there lack of speech that makes this more presentable in these children.  They can't communicate the way they need to and find that being aggressive or defiant typically gets them what they want.  I use a great in home speech website called Speechtails with several of my kiddos and have found it a great tool.  It gives me tons of tips to help encourage speech and a great program.   Give it  shot!  hopefully this stressful time will pass!!! Good Luck, Vikki B, Indiana
> 60 days ago

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