Articulation or Speech Production
When a child's difficulty with producing clear speech persists beyond what is developmentally normal, it can interfere with learning and social development. . . . "It's hard for a child to learn to write what they can't say." (Teacher observation) . . . and it's difficult to form friendships when a child can't be understood, "Tan I pay?" (6 year old's attempt to say "Can I play?").
While there are many children who need individualised help from speech pathologists to address their impairments, there are many opportunities in a classroom to assist as well.
Start with finding out what skills children of different ages should have mastered. How does Speech develop? (web link)
Check what skills your child has with the Speech Checklist (word doc) and manual (word doc). This resource describes a quick technique to evaluate skills. There are two versions of the record form, one with definitions, one without. There is also a section on grammar with definitions of terms.
Resources to help children develop clear speech
- Mouth awareness (word doc)
- How you make speech sounds
- "Teachers Teaching Articulation" a resource developed to teach children how to make speech sounds and to increase awareness of how we use different parts of our mouth when we talk. The activities, including puppet making, were developed for use with video-teleconference and interactive classroom technologies (web page).
- Clear speech tips (web link)
- Lesson Break or Transition Activities to Develop Sound Production (word doc)
- Sound Stories To Teach a Specific Sound
- Sound Stories Loaded with a Specific Sound
Tips from Teachers
"Suggest to parents that they take photos during speech therapy sessions as reminders of what and how to do the activities. These photos can be shared with educators to help practise at school."
"Remember to teach a child HOW to say a sound. Don't just expect that they'll be able to repeat it after you. Think about how you say the sound and use that to guide the child."
"Give the children lots and lots of examples of words with particular sounds. Even if a child can't repeat the sound correctly, it will help them store the words for later reference. Some children's books focus on a particular sound." List of books here (web link)