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Children tend to approach the back-to-school season with a mix of apprehension and excitement. And secondly, if your child is receiving speech therapy in his school district, you are not as likely to talk to the SLP very often. Speech therapy helps individuals gain the ability to communicate through speech and language. Articulation disorders: Difficulty in producing sounds or syllables or saying words incorrectly.
Receptive or expressive communication disorders: Difficulties understanding and processing language, or difficulty in putting words together to form sentences, or trouble expressing or communicating in a socially acceptable way. Speech therapy sessions involve modeling proper speech and using repetition exercises to improve speech and language.
Many conditions, including cerebral palsy, autism, hearing loss, developmental delays, may cause difficulty with speech and language development. Speech therapy is a clinical program aimed at improving speech and language skills and oral motor abilities. For articulation problems, for example, speech therapists in medical centers may work “inside the mouth” using Popsicle sticks, fingers, whistles, straws and other items to help the child gain control over the muscles of the mouth, tongue and throat. Visit the My Child Without Limits support community and talk to fellow parents, caregivers, and experts about their experiences with the treatments and therapies in this section. Check out our Resource Locator to find the government and non-government agencies that can provide the services that your child needs. This is a commonly used term that actually has three parts ─ Speech Therapy, Language Therapy and Communication Therapy. Speech Therapy addresses motor problems involving the oral structures (lips, tongue, teeth, palate, nasal cavity, breathing mechanism), where the child is unable to produce speech sounds or cannot produce them clearly. Language Therapy addresses cognitive (thinking) problems involving listening, paying attention, understanding, memory, organizing thought etc., where the child can speak but not in sentences, makes grammatical mistakes, has difficulty learning new words, and reading.
Communication Therapy addresses social problems involving interest to interact, adapting to people and the environment, where the child can speak but only when he chooses to, doesn’t follow instructions, avoids people, answers irrelevantly etc.
A speech disorder refers to a problem with the actual production of sounds, whereas a language disorder refers to a difficulty understanding or putting words together to communicate ideas. Speech-language pathologists (SLPs), often informally known as speech therapists, are professionals educated in the study of human communication, its development, and its disorders.
In speech-language therapy, an SLP will work with a child one-on-one, in a small group, or directly in a Group to overcome difficulties involved with a specific disorder. This does not mean that older kids can't make progress in therapy; they may progress at a slower rate because they often have learned patterns that need to be changed. Speech-language experts agree that parental involvement is crucial to the success of a child's progress in speech or language therapy. Parents are an extremely important part of their child's therapy program and help determine whether it is a success.
The process of overcoming a speech or language disorder can take some time and effort, so it's important that all family members be patient and understanding with the child.


Your kidling might be enthusiastically embracing his brand-new sweaters that allow him to dress up like a pint-sized Jake Gyllenhaal, but at the same time he’s a little nervous about meeting his new teacher and navigating the school hallways.
With private speech therapy, you’ll see the speech therapist when you drop off and pick up your child. School speech therapists often collaborate with the teacher to find out what the kids are working on in the classroom.
It would be practically impossible for your child’s SLP to list all of the activities she might use throughout the year, but it’s a good idea to get a general sense of what your child will be doing. Children who are able to talk may work on making their speech clearer, or on building their language skills by learning new words, learning to speak in sentences, or improving their listening skills. For children with more global language issues, a play based approach to stimulate communication may be used. Speech therapists may then use speech games, flash cards, toys, hand puppets and reinforces of all sorts to keep sessions on track and encourage children to work harder. Many children may also have a home program which the therapist asks the family to continue between therapy sessions. The therapist may also model correct pronunciation and use repetition exercises to build speech and language skills. The SLP also may work with different food textures and temperatures to increase a child's oral awareness during eating and swallowing. Children enrolled in therapy early (before they're 5 years old) tend to have better outcomes than those who begin therapy later. Kids who complete the program quickest and with the longest-lasting results are those whose parents have been involved. For instance, it's important to help your child do the at-home stimulation activities that the SLP suggests to ensure continued progress and carry-over of newly learned skills.
But asking your child’s SLP how you can best keep in touch with her does a couple of things.
For example, Jake’s IEP might state that he should be able to pronounce the “f” sound in the medial position within three months.
Our therapist may work with the child individually or lead small groups in the classroom to provide speech exercise. Some children may understand language but be unable to communicate effectively due to difficulty with speech. Children who cannot talk may learn sign language, or how to use special equipment such as a computer that speaks for them.
For children with disorders that impact the coordination of the mouth to produce language (e.g. Since each patient with a speech disorder is unique, such therapy will have to be tailored to the needs of the individual.
Speech interventions often use a child’s family members and friends to reinforce the lessons learned in a therapeutic setting. The SLP will physically show the child how to make certain sounds, such as the "r" sound, and may demonstrate how to move the tongue to produce specific sounds.


We might embrace a more structured schedule and we’re eager for them to explore the world around them, but we’re a bit nervous, too.
First, it lets the SLP know that you are keenly interested in remaining involved and up-to-date with your child’s speech therapy sessions. If Jake is still struggling with this after the three months are up, it may be time to review his IEP and perhaps revise it. You can also inform the SLP of your child’s favorite activities, games, etc., in order to encourage his engagement in speech therapy. The speech therapist can share with you the techniques that appear to be effective for your child. Children who talk but have challenges with more discreet communication issues such as facial expression or gestural language use, may work on these areas of communication.
If a child has difficulty saying words that begin with “b” the therapist may suggest daily practice with a list of “b” words, increasing their difficulty as each list is mastered.
This kind of indirect therapy encourages people who are in close daily contact with a child to create opportunities for him or her to use their new skills in conversation.
This is especially true if you’re the parent of a child with special needs, like a speech disorder. Some school SLPs send the children home with a folder, which is updated regularly with notes on progress, areas that need work, and homework assignments.
Your child’s speech therapist might be willing to meet with his new teacher to discuss his needs.
On the other hand, if Jake has aced the “f” sound in the medial position, he’s ready to move on to new challenges. Speech therapists can also help children with severe disabilities learn how to use special communication devices, such as a computer with a voice synthesizer, or a special board covered with symbols of everyday objects and activities to which a child can point to indicate his or her wishes.
Other kinds of exercises help children master the social skills involved in communicating by teaching them to keep their head up, maintain eye contact and repeat themselves when they are misunderstood. In a school setting, some children may receive group treatment and some children may have a program which is designed by the speech and language pathologist but implemented by the teacher or an aid. She might also have ideas for apps for speech therapy, helpful books, and tools such as Speech Buddies, which you can use with your child at home. It’s a good idea to chat with your child’s speech therapist about his needs as he enters a new grade. In this case, it can be helpful to have notes from the teacher regarding which areas your child struggles with in the classroom.
There are all sorts of ways to encourage the production of speech, and they can be integrated into other types of therapeutic systems.
Use the following questions as a focal point for your conversation with the speech-language pathologist (SLP).



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