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Reply To: Limited progress – speech disorder – HELP!!

Catherine Bremner

Hi Sophie, I agree with what others have said (like checking to see that there are not structural issues like a tongue tie, narrow palate etc).  I worked with a similar child and I, like you, felt I had tried everything! I eventually had success with the ‘tutting’ sound like Anne describes. Instead of being a stern teacher, I had a little toy dog that would only come (across the table) if we called him with the ‘tutting’ sound. It was a game and I never referred to the ‘t’ sound. It was a while ago but I think I started with this dentalised too. This appealed to her and it stopped her accessing her motor plan for the ‘t’ sound (like talking about the flat tyre sound for ‘s’).  She also backed ‘n’ to ‘ng’. She got this first and we then practised it a lot and talked about how she could feel her tongue tip on her alveolar ridge, looked in the mirror etc for this sound, increasing awareness of raising her tongue tip and she was experiencing success! The little dog stayed with us for a long time in sessions! I then, for example, put the letter ‘a’ on the table and she said the sound and then immediately called the dog. So I got atttt. The dog became more obedient and eventually he came when he was only called once! So got ‘at’. I did this using CV words (pictures) which could then become another real word when ‘t’ was added e.g bow/boat (although I didn’t mention this to start with, as I didn’t want her accessing her representation of the word boat). I worked on it word finally first and had success. Then word initially and she needed quite a lot of work word-medially too. I think the ‘old motor pattern’ was so entrenched. I felt it was almost like an immature reflex! Hope this may help you too. Good luck!