Exceptionality: Speech and
Chapter 9, web-site
• Identify the areas in which language
is used in schools?
• What would be the possible impact to
a student if they had difficulties with
speech and language?
I am a Child
• I am a Child
I look at my book and I can't read the words,
My Language is muffled and misunderstood..
I am trying so hard but I cannot succeed,
My tasks aren’t completed because I can’t read.
I am often the one who cannot sit still
Or so very quiet no one knows I am there.
I watch from the background and hope that I grasp,
Something from lessons being taught in my class.
By the time I get help I am so far behind,
I get so frustrated I'm perceived as unkind.
My education is depending on you.
So if you do not speak for me,
I don't know what to do.
Please hear what I'm saying,
Please do not be beguiled,
Please look out for my future,
I am a child..
SPEECH VS. LANGUAGE:
• Speech is the actual physical production of sounds;
Involves breathing, voicing and muscle movements of the lips, jaw
and tongue;(essentially, a motor act)
• Language is the content of our speech; symbolic, abstract;
Involves how we comprehend and express messages (receptive and
expressive),grammar/ sentence formation, discourse organization,
social perception/communication, metalinguistics awareness,
reading and written expression
Checklist of Behaviours That May
Indicate Communication Disorders
• Poor articulation
• Different voice quality
• Slurred conversational speech
• Has problems following oral directions
• Speech rambles, isn’t able to express ideas concisely
• Appears shy, withdrawn, never seems to talk or interact with
• Asks questions that are off -topic
• Has a poor sense of humour
• Has poor comprehension of material and activities
• Doesn’t plan ahead in pencil/paper activities
• Takes things literally
• Is not organized; appears messy
• Doesn't manage time well; has to be prodded to complete
• (Source: Teaching Students With Special Needs In Inclusive Setting
Canadian Edition 2001)
DISORDERS OF SPEECH:
• VOICE PROBLEMS:
unusual pitch, loudness or quality draws attention to itself
ex: may see voice problems in children with repaired cleft palate, Hearing
Impairment, vocally abusive habits (excessive talking, yelling)
- treatment: -Medical Intervention (ENT), behaviour modification (ex:
indoor vs. outdoor voice), education about good vocal habits
characteristics include: repetitions of sounds, syllables,words, phrases
prolongations of sounds, blockages (usually on vowel-initial words)
- treatment: -slow rate of speech, full breath, easy onsets to words,
continuous voicing, reduced articulatory pressure, reducing speaking anxiety
Speech : ARTICULATION
• may include: omissions of sounds, distortions of sounds,
simplifications - substituting easier sounds for more difficult ones
(ex: w for r -look for error patterns (fronting, backing, reducing
• -treatment: - discriminate among sounds, teach placement for
sound, Use all the senses (see, hear, feel how sound is made)
practice, a sound in isolation, syllable, word, phrases, sentences,
spontaneous conversation, start with sounds that are
developmentally easiest first (ex: tackle /f/ before /r/)
AGES AT WHICH CHILDREN DEVELOP SPECIFIC SPEECH
• AGE SPEECH SOUNDS
3.5 b, p, m, w, h
4.5 t, d, n, k, g, j
5.5 f, v, s, z
6.5 sh, l, th, ch
8.0 r, s, z
• (s, z first appear at 5.5, then are mispronounced temporarily
when front teeth fall out, and reappear by age 8)
WHAT IS LANGUAGE?
• INTERACTION OF CONTENT, FORM, AND USE
• FOUR MAIN AREAS:
1. SEMANTICS - LANGUAGE CONTENT
2. PHONOLOGY - LANGUAGE FORM
3. SYNTAX - LANGUAGE FORM
4. PRAGMATICS - LANGUAGE USE
• RECEPTIVE LANGUAGE
• EXPRESSIVE LANGUAGE
Match the child's utterance to the area of language
• 1. Look at the goggie! Semantics
2. No want some food. Phonology
3. That thing that keeps the rain off. Syntax
4. My name is Sarah. Pragmatics
Try some more:
5. My daddy drived me here. Phonology
6. What's your name? Semantics
7. I need a'poon for my soup. Syntax
8. I went to the, um, circle and
saw some lions and clowns. Pragmatics
• RECEPTIVE: difficulty comprehending, processing and
remembering what others say; difficulty following verbal
• EXPRESSIVE: may be manifest in limited vocabulary, trouble
retrieving words, incorrect word order, grammatical errors,
trouble sequencing and organizing a description or
- strong relationship between oral and written language
skills; often see same error patterns in their written
RESEARCH ON THE PREVALENCE OF SPEECH AND
LANGUAGE DISORDERS IN CHILDREN
• 80 to 90 % of children with disabilities exhibit speech and language
• In Ontario about 7 % of the child population have a disability. This means
that approximately 6% of all children in Ontario may have speech and
• Of the estimated 5% of school-age children who have learning
disabilities, 40 to 60 percent exhibit speech and language problems.
• An estimated 1.7 % of school-age children are developmentally
handicapped and almost all of these children exhibit speech and language
• An estimated 5 to 10 % of all children exhibit behaviour disorders such as
Attention Deficit Disorder and Hyperactivity. About 70 to 80 % of children
identified with behaviour disorders have been shown to exhibit speech
and language problems.
• Source: Office of Child and Youth Health Policy, Ministry of Health, March 6, 1995.
The following statistics demonstrate how important it is for
children to be able to acquire essential speech and language
• The school drop-out rate is higher for children with speech and language
problems than for the general population, (43 % vs. 24%).
• The level of language development at 15 months of age has been
demonstrated to be an important predictor of early school performance,
and preschool intervention has been shown to be effective in reducing the
frequency of significant early schooling problems.
• The presence of weak language skills in the preschool years predicts
later behaviour disorders during school years and early remediation of the
language disorder prevents further development of the behaviour
• The prevalence of speech and language disorders has been found to be
higher among youth in prison than in the general population. One study
reported that 80% of adolescent boys in prison were identified as having
sub-normal speech and language skills.
• A number of studies have found a high prevalence of speech and
language impairment in children with psychiatric disorders, and
have indicated that language-impaired children are at greater risk
for developing a psychiatric problem than non-impaired children. A
reported 50 to 89 % of children with psychiatric diagnoses also
exhibited a speech or language disorder.
• Source: Office of Child Youth and Health Policy, Ministry of Health, March
General Classroom Strategies for Students
with Speech and Language Disorders
• •Have the child face you.
•Sit with your face at the same level as the
•Give directives as explicitly as possible. Avoid
using unnecessary words.
•Speak clearly and at a moderate speed to be more
•Don't place pressures on the child to use oral
•Don't speak for the child.
Classroom Accommodations for Students
with SPEECH Disorders
• Build a positive classroom climate. (educate students about speech
disorders and give students a chance to model speech)
• Help students learn to monitor their own speech (practice and monitor
their own performance through record keeping)
• Pair students for practice (practice skills and articulation with a partner)
• Modify instruction and materials (tape record students' reading so they
can evaluate their speech and give students practice listening so they can
learn to discriminate sounds)
• Encourage parents to work with their children
Classroom Accommodations for Students with
• Teach some prerequisite imitation skills (show pictures and have
student repeat the phrase for the picture).
• Increase receptive language in the classroom (begin with simple
directions and slowly increase the directions for these -tasks, pair
students up to practice descriptions, let students work on categorizing).
• Give students opportunities for facilitative play (provides modeling for
students to imitate and expand their use of language and encourage self
talk while playing)
• Use naturalistic techniques and simulated real-life activities to increase
language use (problem solving, questioning techniques, simulate real
• Encourage students' conversations through story reading (ask questions,
expand on words, praise students' talk)
• Use music and play games to improve language