Articulation Disorders (page 2)

By — Pearson Allyn Bacon Prentice Hall
Updated on Jul 20, 2010

Techniques for Enhancing Language Development Among Children with Articulation Disorders

The most important factor in enhancing language development among children who have articulation disorders is to create and maintain a positive classroom environment where children are encouraged to communicate and where any problems in communication are dealt with in a sensitive, caring manner. The classroom teacher should not embarrass the child who is having difficulty with a particular sound or draw the attention of the rest of the class to this child’s difficulty.

Children who do not have articulation difficulties will often notice when their peers’ speech exhibits articulation irregularities. Under no circumstances should children in the classroom be allowed to tease or make fun of a child who has articulation difficulties. Instead, other children in the classroom should be encouraged to accept the sound approximations from the child with articulation problems. A teacher can also explain to the class that some children are learning how to make specific sounds or explain that the child does not hear all of the sounds that others may hear. In addition, the focus of the classroom language should be on the meaning of what is communicated instead of on a rigid standard for phoneme articulation. As mentioned earlier, it is also important for the classroom teacher and the speech–language pathologist to work closely in developing and implementing specific techniques or activities for children with articulation disorders.

Children with articulation problems may not participate in group discussions as readily as other children and may be more comfortable participating in small-group activities where they are interacting in a conversational setting. In large groups, activities with unison responses (e.g., reciting an action poem, song, or refrain from a predictable book) provide children with articulation problems an opportunity to participate verbally in a nonthreatening setting. Regardless of the activity, it is important for the classroom teacher and all of the children in the classroom to respond positively to the child’s attempts to communicate and to focus on the meaning of the communication rather than on the difficulties the child is having.

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