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Why does my child speak to herself but is unable to express to others?

Q: I have been watching DoctorNDTV which I found an excellent platform for raising queries pertaining to kids of expatriate parents. Let me put across to you my question relating to my daughter who is 5 years old. As per my observation and from the feedback from school, she is intelligent and selectively active i.e. she is active in certain environments. But of late I have been noticing in her some of the traits which I carried in my childhood particularly speaking to oneself even in public places like mall as well at times at home. Is this a habit to be curtailed at the bud or should I ignore it. Your guidance on this topic will be highly appreciated. Secondly during the PTA meeting a passing comment was made by the teacher regarding her inability to express her thoughts in spite of her knowing the subject. The same was noticed by me much earlier. She feels free to express thoughts only to me. Is there a way to overcome this? Expecting your valuable advice at the earliest.

A:Children at age 5 are still in the process of developing their vocabulary and grammatical skills. This makes them inhibited sometimes. They differ in inhibition levels and are often able to express themselves better to a parent. Your daughter is too young for you to worry about the issue. Instead of making her conscious about it, try to encourage her when she reports that she expressed something in class. Do not criticize her as it would make her more inhibited. Regarding the habit of speaking to herself, this is another characteristic of children at this age. Children find it easier to verbalise their thoughts rather than thinking them in an abstract way. Since you remember you had the same habit, but have emerged a normal person, perhaps there is no reason to worry about it. If the habit persists or increases, maybe you can get her assessed by a child psychologist.

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