May 14, 2019

Are you always wondering what new skills your child should be demonstrating? Then you may find this chart below a helpful reference for when you can expect to see new speech and language skills emerging.

The chart below indicates the average ages most typically developing children demonstrate the following speech/language skills. It is important to remember that since each child is different, the age ranges may vary for the development of each specific skill.

This chart was adapted from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

May 8, 2019

The month of May is Better Speech and Hearing Month. This is a time to increase awareness in our community regarding communication disorders. Over the next few weeks, the blog will feature information on the milestones of speech development.

Speech Sound Development

Your child will develop individual speech sounds gradually.  Its starts with vocalizations around 2 or 3 months and grows to babbling and cooing and stringing sounds and syllables together between 8-24 months. As your child grows, they will learn sounds and begin to form words around a year old. Articulation errors are to be expected as your child is learning and developing. If you are wondering whether your child’s language development is progressing appropriately, these guideline provided in the Assessment and Treatment of...

March 8, 2019

Today’s blog post is written by Carly Noe, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist at Complete Balance Nutrition. Some of you may know Carly since the feeding therapy team at High Hopes often refers families to her. We are so grateful for Carly’s partnership and her willingness to share her expertise on our blog!

With so much information at our fingertips about how to properly nourish our children, how do we determine what is essential to the growth and development of our precious little ones? In honor of National Nutrition Month, I am going to give five tips regarding the building blocks of good nutrition for infants and children. From when to introduce new foods to how to overcome or avoid picky eating habits, we will cover some of the most essential points of infant and childhood nutrition...

February 12, 2019

The month of February is Congenital Heart Defect Awareness. We have a guest blog post from two High Hopes’ families, the Boyers and Daniels, sharing their family’s journey with a Congenital Heart Defect diagnosis.

Congenital Heart Defects (CHD’s) are the most common type of birth defects. CHD’s effect about 40,000 births per year in the United States. About 25% of babies with a CHD have a critical CHD. Critical CHD’s generally require surgery or other less invasive procedures in their first year of life. CHD’s are the leading cause of birth defect related infant death. About 20-30% of people with a CHD have other physical problems or developmental or cognitive disorders. The occurrence and severity of a developmental disability or delay increases with how complex the heart defect is. So...

February 1, 2019

Technology is everywhere in our world. It invades every area of life and can easily distract and entertain individuals of all ages, especially our little ones. Did you know there is research linking excessive screen time to expressive speech delays in young children?  Expressive speech is using words to create phrases and sentences to convey meaning. Expressive speech development is important because it allows a child to express their wants, needs, feelings, thoughts etc. and engage in meaningful interactions with others.

Dr. Catherine Birkin completed a research study finding at a child’s 18 month doctor visit, 20% of  parents reported their child’s average daily use of a handheld device was 28 minutes. This same study found that for each 30 minute increase in handheld screen time, a c...

January 23, 2019

January 23rd is National Handwriting Day. So pull out a pen and paper and write a letter or color with your child!


For children, handwriting reflects the achievement of many developmental milestones. Just as a child progresses from crawling to standing to walking and develops gross motor skills the same is true as your child develops fine motor skills and builds hand strength. Strong arm and hand muscles are needed for an appropriate pencil grasp and to learn the appropriate amount of pressure to apply when writing and coloring. Over time, a child becomes more coordinated and efficient with each task or milestone conquered.

Here are a few developmental milestones related to fine motor skills and handwriting:

  • At 2 years old, scribbles, draws simple vertical and horizontal lines

  • A...

November 9, 2018

There are several building blocks of literacy that are crucial in the development of your child’s literacy skills. Some of those building blocks include recognizing letter sounds, identifying letters and numbers, recognizing words, naming familiar objects, and building vocabulary skills. At High Hopes, we emphasize building literacy skills with our children and the education staff utilizes a literacy-based thematic curriculum to encourage the development of reading and writing skills in the students.  Literacy is a focus in our school because we realize building strong literacy skills at a young age is a major contributing factor to future academic success.

As a parent, you play a vital role in encouraging your child to build upon the literacy skills he/she is learning at school. If you...

November 1, 2018

National Family Literacy Month is all about celebrating families who value literacy and strive to make it a priority in their home, as well as providing practical resources to encourage literacy development. In other words, this month is about recognizing you and the diligent effort you take to promote literacy in your family!

Family Literacy emphasizes the importance of reading and writing in the home environment. Providing opportunities for children and parents to engage in literacy activities together creates a foundation for the child’s learning and is crucial for his or her reading success. When some people hear the word ‘literacy’, they may automatically think of reading or I cannot teach my child reading and writing skills because I am not a teacher; but strong literacy skills in...

October 31, 2018

Coming in November, Family Support Services will launch new programs and initiatives for the High Hopes Community. With this news, High Hopes is excited to introduce Jessica Mizell as Family Support Services Coordinator. Jessica has been with High Hopes since October 2016, formerly serving as Executive Assistant to Gail Powell and Volunteer Coordinator. Her experience as Executive Assistant has granted her great insight to the operations and programming of High Hopes. Thanks to Jessica’s efforts as Volunteer Coordinator, High Hopes has seen an abundance of support from a generous local community.

Jessica possesses a Master of Science in Human Resource Education and a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education, both from Louisiana State University. Prior to joining High Hopes, she...

July 5, 2018

Convinced he had discovered a new syndrome, Dr. Andreas Rett published findings in several under-read medical journals about six girls under his pediatric care. These girls had similar symptoms and similar stories -- they all developed typically until they were toddlers, when they suddenly began to lose control of their hand and eye movement. It would be twenty years before another doctor's research would propel the syndrome Rett discovered into the realm of medical legitimacy. The condition we now know as "Rett syndrome" is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder about which we are eagerly learning as much as we can...

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