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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Twin Language

Also known as idioglossia or cryptophasia is not entirely fabricated as often believed. This could be a manifestation of the support system the twins develop for each other when either or both have delayed speech development. So the foreign sounding incoherent gibberish continues till they catch up with the rest of the world in speech. One theory indicates that this could be because twins are born at 37 weeks or before, which is premature by standards or the low birth weight. A British study showed that twin language is higher (around 50%) in twins with speech and language difficulties than for twins with normal language (11%).
It could also be because of more one-to-one communication time or opportunity with each other rather than adults or their strong non-verbal/ intuitional conversational skills.
There could be code words but then who does not make code words- there are siblings/ couples/ families who make code words and terms that only they understand then why should twins / multiples who have shared the same womb space not do the same?
Then there is the unique closeness that they share.
Telepathy is something that exists between couples/ friends too so we cannot attribute it to being existent only among multiples. So sometimes, they actually do not need to talk to convey.
The Language learning process is aided through interaction and environment. Reading, writing, gesturing- all are forms of language
As Parents,
1. Listen & Respond to the sounds and gibberish that children speak
2. Watch out for steady progress not speed
a. a general thumb rule would be 1st words between 12-18 months, 10 words in 18 months
b. 21 months- identifies objects in pictures, uses 2 word sentences.
c. 50 plus words at 2 years and understood about a quarter of the time
d. 4-5 word sentences & correct grammar which others can understand by 4 years
3. Tempt them to communicate-
a. Talk to each twin separately even if you need to ask the same question twice over.
b. Demonstrate and watch- play with a toy/ puzzle/ building block, peek-a-boo, keep favourite food out of reach.

Theoretically these are right but practically this may not be easy. Ojas & Tejas manage very well with sign language. They either express very well facially or point at the object in question or the best method is “wail” and bang the head to the floor or the door. When they talk gibberish, they have a particular tone which they can recognize. At that time, they shut all of us out and focus on each other. The game could be their version of cricket/ badminton/ or pulling clothes out of the cupboard. They actually discuss how to go about the game.


The Visitor said...

The photo at the top of this post says all. Simply unbelievable!

Kodi's Mom said...

ok confession time. everytime i read abt O & T, especially abt how they "communicate", I wish I had twins....I'm sure there's nothign like the connection they share.

Fuzzylogic said...

The pic is soo soo adorable!it looks like they are sharing a private joke among themselves.I think twins will always have that unbelievable connection.

~nm said...

The other day I was watching a program on NGC about twins and how they start communicating within the womb. They showed all kinds of twins and triplets where one was quiet kinds and the other boisterous hitting the quieter one every now and then. It also showed how they hugged each other in teh womb and how the style of hugging was the same even when they were about 4-5 yrs of age.

It was really amazing watching that program and thats when I was thinking you and your kids!

lumi said...

I wouldn't worry about it too much as long as they are making progress language wise and you and those around them are constantly chattering with them about things around them. Mini-me was a little slow with the word count but once she started she was a chatterbox. Now she won't shut up.

utbtkids said...

Aww, they are so adorable. Liek Kodi's mom said, I used to have romantic notions about having twins. But couple of my friends had twins and I know how much work is involved, so bye bye romantic ideas!

More than the three weeks premature reason, twins might start communicating a little later because they have the support system within them selves. This is purely my personal view.

Deztnie said...

I posted regarding your remark about signing on "Moms Blog". Handsome, precious boys - congratulations. The signing program I teach in So. Cal, USA is by the founders on the research - they are designed for 6-36 months. I started with my son at 4 months! I have a friend with twins (premies and delayed development) who only communicated in "twin-speak" until she began signing with them. It is a wonderful bridge for multiple languages and a definite boost to their verbal and cognitive skills.

We have instructors now in Canada and Hong Kong. Perhaps you would be interested in becoming and instructor yourself?