• Dear Parents/Grandparents/Guardians,

          The following is a general explanation of speech and language milestones and delays.  A child's Individual Educational Plan
     (IEP) will explain in detail specific area(s) of delay that your child is presenting with and the goals being addressed
     towards mastering those communication skills.
           Often difficulties in these areas can interfere with a child's educational progress either acdemically, socially, or emotionally.
    When one or more of these areas listed below begins to negatively impact a child's success in school, intervention may be necessary.
           If your child is not in the Speech and/or Language Program and you have concerns about his/her communication
    development, please contact your child's general education classroom teacher for a speech (articulation, fluency, voice) referral or for
    an RTI meeting to discuss your concerns about possible language delays.  For further assistance please contact me at any time. 
                                                            Jan Roberts, MS-SLP 
                                                   robertsj5@leonschools.net (best)
    S-L Milestones.jpg
    Receptive, Expressive and Pragmatic Language disorders occur when an individual has difficulty understanding or speaking/writing language.
    Signs of common language delays in children between birth to 4 years of age, an important stage in early detection
     of communication delays, include:
       - does not smile or interact with others (birth and older)

       - does not babble (4 - 7 months)

       - makes only a few sounds or gestures, like pointing (7 - 12 months)

       - does not understand what others say (7 months - 2 years)

       - says only a few words (12 - 18 months)

       - words are not easily understood (18 months - 2 years)

       - does not put words together to make sentences (1.5 - 3 years)

       - has trouble playing and talking with other children (2 - 3 years)

       - has trouble with early reading and writing skills (2.5 - 3 years)


     Characteristics of language disorders may include:

       - answering questions inappropriately

       - difficulty understanding concepts such as spatial, time, quantity and size

       - difficulty telling a story so that a listener understands

       - poor understanding of words and word meanings

       - difficulty producing sentences using appropriate grammar

       - difficulty following directions

       - using incorrect verb tenses in sentences

       - becoming frustrated when trying to communicate

       - using the wrong word or has difficulty remembering words during conversation

       - seems to have a hard time organizing thoughts

       - doesn't seem to understand what is being said


     Ways to help children with language delays:

       - Listen and respond to your child.
       - Talk, read, and play with your child.

       - Talk with your child in the language you are most comfortable using.

       - Know it is good to teach your child to speak a second language.

       - Talk about what you are doing and what your child is doing.
       - Use a wide variety of words with your child.
       - Use longer sentences with varied sentence structure as your child gets older.
       - Have your child play with other children. 


    Examples of areas of language delay (spoken or written):

       Expressive Language: The ability to express and sequence ideas clearly using correct grammar and syntax (word order).

       Receptive Language: The ability to understand spoken language, follow directions, and make sense of classroom instruction. 

            1. Semantics (vocabulary) - the meaning of words and phrases

            2. Syntax (grammar) - sentence structure; arrangement of words in a sentence in grammatical form

            3. Morphology  - rules of word formation such as undrsatnding plurality, past tense, etc.

            4. Pragmatics (intent) - "social graces" of language such as eye contact, turn taking, and staying on topic
    Pragmatic language disorder refers to the ability to use language appropriately and for a variety of reasons across
      social situations.
    Characteristics of pragmatic language disorders include:
      - decreased or lack of eye contact
      - difficulty understanding body language
      - difficulty participating in a conversation
      - decreased interest in other children
      - difficulty with personal problem solving skills
      - comprehending language very literally
      - difficulty understanding abstract language or humor



     Articulation disorders occur when a child has difficulty making certain sounds or combining the sounds used in speech in a manner appropriate to the child's age.

     Signs of common speech delays in children between birth to 4 years of age.
     - Produces "p, b, m h, w" incorrectly in words (1 - 2 years)
     - Produces "k, g, f, t, d" incorrectly in words (2 - 3 years)
     - Produces speech that is unclear even to familiar listeners (age 3 years)
    Characteristics of a speech disorder may include:
       Substitutions, distortions or omissions of sounds:
         1. Substitutions - "wabbit" for "rabbit"

         2. Distortions - "owabbit" for "rabbit"

         3. Omissions - "abbit" for "rabbit"
     Phonological Processing disorders occur when multiple errors are present that fall into a pattern, and the child has difficulty understanding that words are made up of sounds and sounds can be manipulated to change words.
           1. Omission of all final sounds - "schoo" for "school"
           2. Omission of sounds in blends - "chool" for "school"
           3. Omission of syllables in multi-syllabic words - "bufly" for "butterfly"
    Childhood Apraxia of Speech is a motor planning disorder characterized by multiple errors that are inconsistent and speech
      becomes more difficult to understand as utterances get longer.
    Dysarthria of Speech is a motor strength disorder characterized by weakness, imprecise articulation and slurring of words.






    Fluency (stuttering) disorders occur when there is an interruption in the usual flow or rhythm of speech and the ability to communicate ideas without excessive repetitions and hesitations.


    Characteristics of a fluency disorder include:

           1. Repetitions - "I-I-I want to go."

           2. Prolongations - "Mmmmmmmy name is Sssue."

           3. Blocks - Stoppages when a person can't make a sound at all.

           4. Hesitations - "________ I like school."

           5. Interjections - " I um, er, um want to play."

           6. Revisions - "I would like, I want to, I need to get my books."



    Voice disorders occur when children have difficulty with the ability to control normal pitch, loudness, or quality of their voices.  

    Characteristics of a voice disorder may include:

           1. Quality - strained, raspy, harsh, breathy, and/or hoarse
           2. Intensity (loudness) - inappropriate volume for a given situation

           3. Aphonia - voice breaks or loss of voice

           4.  Pitch - too high/low
           5.  Resonance (nasality) - Improper balance or emission of air through the nose and mouth.