Developing First Grade Speaking Skills (page 2)
What You Need To Know
If children are still having difficulty pronouncing some sounds by the time they reach First Grade, parents should seek a specialist. Most public schools provide speech therapy. Parents can still offer strong support for a child who’s stumbling over stubborn sounds. Ask your specialist about exercises you can do together at home. But always, keep the practice as fun and entertaining as possible. No child likes to feel awkward, or sense that they’re always in the spotlight.
How You Can Help
Here are some techniques which will help your child develop linguistic skills, but which won’t feel too serious. Remember, if practice feels more like play, your child will soon show improvements:
- Leave the motor on. Many children who have problems with a specific sound tend to deal with the problem by skipping the sound. The phrase ‘motor on’ reminds your child that they have to pronounce every part of a sentence. If your child feels like this is hard, offer a trade. They can use the same phrase when you make a mistake! It’s best, though, not to overuse this phrase to your child in public.
- Alliteration. Seven sneaky serpents snacked on six submarine sandwiches. Alliteration is just a fancy word for using words that begin with the same letter. If your child has trouble with one particular sound, turn it into a game. It doesn’t have to be hissing snakes, any letter can be fun. And don’t let your child do all the work. While he or she has to say the sentence, you have to say it super-fast, then even faster. Hearing you stumble over the crazy sentence will make your child feel a lot better about their own struggles.
- Rhyme. Build the difficult sounds into simple rhymes. Check out anything by Dr. Seuss for catchy ideas. If your child responds positively to this game, take it up a notch and make a rhyming book together. On each page, your child can write a rhyming sentence and draw a picture. By the end, you’ll have the best bedtime story of all, a home-made book which helps your child develop.
For more information on help for speech development in First Grade, please see the full article:
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