Not Debate...Almost 4 year old repeats what I say in a worrying way.

Jenny - posted on 11/06/2012 ( 6 moms have responded )

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My son will be four years old in three weeks time. He's had this thing ever since he started learning to talk where he would repeat what I would say (when I talk to him) in a mumbled sort of way.



He doesn't do this as much as he did when he was 3 but it still happens. It has always worried me and it still does. I've never seen another child do this.



When I raised this concern at his 3.5 year health check they said not to worry, this is just how he learns. So I usually put it at the back of my mind, but sometimes I worry its something more serious.



For example, I was reading him a more difficult book the other day (i.e with more sentences than the ones I usually read to him and my 2 year old) and the whole time he was mimicking everything I read.



This also happens if for example he's coming across something new or something I want to teach him, if I give him instruction or explanation he will just talk as I talk, repeating everything I say.



Obviously it is the way he learns new linguistic skills, but is this therefore indicative of a learning disability or something else I should be concerned about?

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Chelsey - posted on 11/07/2012

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Didn't find it so much disturbing as annoying. I just figured she was trying to pay attention and learn and "read" the book like mommy.

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Celsa - posted on 01/04/2014

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My son has speak delete he does the same ting but i put him face to face with me and he understands me when i gift him instructions (but my son is autism )the tell me when he was three and hi is 8 years old star talking with terapie a hold tings the he wants and i make him talk by asking me for the sstaff the im holding!

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This is actually a very common way that children learn communication and verbal skills. He is a little bit old to still be doing it so frequently, but still well within normal ranges.



Unless he is exhibiting other signs of autism, there is no cause to be worried about Immediate Ecolalia. It is not exactly a condition on it's own. It is more a symptom, or even more accurately described as a coping tool to help children on the Autism Spectrum or children with Autism Spectrum Disorders cope with their autistic symptoms and anxieties. It is rarely, if ever, the first or only symptom of an Autism disorder.

Jenny - posted on 11/06/2012

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Chelsey, didn't you find it disturbing when she did this? To me its so strange to hear him mumble the words along with me for 5+sentences without stopping if I don't. You can tell he does this subconsciously and is just trying to concentrate.



I did some google research about it, and there is actually a condition called Immediate Ecolalia, the description of which fits his behavior perfectly. It can be a symptom of Autism, so it has got me worried a little. I have noticed that it has been improving SLOWLY, I worry that as we go on to preschool I may find more indicatives of some learning disability. I hope I am worrying over nothing.

Chelsey - posted on 11/06/2012

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My eldest daughter (5) does this when I read books (which is rather annoying) to her or even when we are singing along to the radio. She now knows all the words for all of the pages in all 7 of our Dr. Seuss books as well as with other smaller books. I don't have to read them anymore, I just turn it to any page and she starts "reading" the story to me.



I don't know if that really helps, but my daughter doesn't seem to have any learning issues. If you are really worried about it I'd get a second opinion or keep bringing it up when he goes in for a check up.

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