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Concerns and how to improve articulation skills

Concerns of poor speech patterns
-          Difficulty succeeding academically
-          Others having difficulty with understanding child
-          Decoding skills in reading and misspelled words in written work
-          Physically- teeth become misaligned due to poor placement, jaw can be elongated, and facial structure can be affected
-          Socially- teasing from other students
-          In adult world- perceived as less intelligent and less capable of performing adequately in the workplace

How can you improve speech skills?
-          Listen to your child as they speak, do not correct frequently, tease or laugh at mistakes-keep your child confidant about his or her speaking skills
-          Use your best speech when talking to your child. Repeat your child’s message correctly when they do make errors.
-          Encourage appropriate resting positions of the tongue
-          If child only has one or two errors, have them say word again when you hear the error
-          Model correct speech pronunciations
-          Use bedtime stories or “I Spy” games as opportunities to look for your child’s speech sounds in words
-          Your child may not say all sounds correctly at first, and that is okay! It can take up to 8 years for all children to speak correctly in a typically developing child. Thus, some errors are to be expected. See the developmental norms.
-          Monitor for ear infections, and have them treated immediately. When a child gets an ear infection, they may get a temporary, partial hearing loss. This will cause them not to hear all the sounds around them, and in speech which is critical for good speech development. (You have to hear it correctly to say it correctly). If your child does have an ear infection, speak clearly, in short and simple sentences. Make sure they are looking at you when you are speaking, and minimize background noise such as the TV or radio.