Speech Disorders in Kids: 8 Ways to Help Your Child With Speech Therapy at Home by Mindy Hudon, M.S., CCC-SLP
According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), 5 percent of school-aged children have a speech disorder. In most instances, children with speech-sound disorders are receiving speech therapy within the school setting. If your child is receiving speech therapy, here’s how you can help your child’s speech development at home:
- Contact your child’s speech-language pathologist to learn about your child’s target sounds and how best to cue them at home.
- Request a home program and ideas to practice the speech sounds.
- Positive reinforcement goes a long way. Always praise your child for using, or attempting to use, their target sound correctly.
- Choose a stress-free time to work with your child on the speech sounds at home.
- Make the practice fun by using board games, I Spy games or by reading books.
- Use pictures to reinforce the speech-sound practice. Ask your child’s speech-language pathologist for pictures to use at home.
- Search the internet for speech therapy blogs like MommySpeechTherapy that provide free downloads of speech-sound pictures and/or games.
- Apps like Little Bee Speech Articulation Station provide colorful pictures and games. It’s best to use an app that allows you to download only the speech sounds your child needs, rather than purchasing a professional program.
Working with your child’s speech-language pathologist is critical. Carryover of learned sounds needs to occur in all natural environments like home and school.
For more information visit AHSA.org.
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