Advanced search

Would like advice re: speech therapy

(17 Posts)
Justers Wed 12-Jan-11 15:47:28

Hi would really appreciate advice regarding your experiences of speech therapy. I have just come away from my son's 4th therapy appointment not really any the wiser. He is 4y and was referred to SALT by nursery as they were having difficulty understanding what he was saying. Granted I agree that many people do struggle to understand him. However during these sessions he has only been assessed and other than giving me leaflets on tongue exercises to do with him not much else has happened. Therapist was late for his appointment today therefore had a 10 min chat and was advised that she would put his name forward for attention and listening groups which start in spring. I feel a bit let down as I thought the whole point of speech therapy would be one on one sessions to try to get speech clearer. Are my expectations too high, has anyone had experience with this, just feel very dissapointed.

loujay Wed 12-Jan-11 15:53:32

I have been through this with DD. What sort of group are they talking about.........ask if there is a course that you could go on ( I think we went on the Hannen course)
At this age they tend to focus more on what you can do at home with your DS as you are his best teacher.
They might then look at group sessions.
It can be frustrating but just keep pushing and asking.
If yor area is anything like mine SALT are in very short supply.

Justers Wed 12-Jan-11 16:05:47

Yes loujay the therapist said it was not an ideal situation as there was not enough staff but I thought the 4 sessions would of had at least some kind of therapy which I could do at home with him. I will ask about any courses but the one which she has advised seems to be a group session that concentrates on listening skills and teaching how to take turns when playing games not a sessions on any sort of phonics.

AlwaysbeOpralFruitstome Wed 12-Jan-11 16:12:00

Hi Juster, my son is about to turn four and has had about a year of speech therapy and the only one to one work he has had, has been during assessments, otherwise it has all been group work with suggested 'homework'. He did have a speech delay but seems to have almost caught up, however he is still (and has always been) difficult to understand but it was only during his last assessment that the therapist diagnosed Verbal dyspraxia.

His therapist told me that the specific treatment for it is not recommended until they are a bit older as it entails a lot of repetition and for the majority of pre-schoolers it just wouldn't work. Her advice to me was to keep modeling correct pronunciation at home, talk slower and encourage him to talk slower, loads of praise for clear speech and to make sure that nursery/school are aware that he made need a little more time when answering questions. She also reassured me that pronunciation is the last thing to develop and that it would more than likely come in time (it is getting better) but if there was still issues at about 7/8 then more intensive therapy could be done (and would be more likely to work at that age).

So, it sounds very much like the treatment your receiving except that your therapist doesn't seem to be keeping you very well informed. Hope your little boy gets the help he needs.

ragged Wed 12-Jan-11 17:17:32

Attention and listening is half of speech, the first half of effective speech, I would think. If he can't hear the right sounds and rhythms, he won't be able to reproduce them.

If she's suggesting that then those are probably his first (primary) issues to tackle. He won't be able to move on, and especially not to the final stage (self-correction), until he's mastered those very basic skills of hearing speech properly.

maxybrown Wed 12-Jan-11 17:49:39

always - you are right, the therpay for some severly delayed speech children can be very very hard work for them and very intense. My Ds has had one to one SALT since Sept - this IS rare though and he will probably start at a speech unit in Sept. He is very very with it and even at 2 could concentrate for long periods - hence them being willing to do this work with him. My son isn't difficult to understand - he has hardly any speech TO understand! Though has been trying so hard since the one to one SALT. He falls asleep when we leave though as it is for an hour and like I say very intensive - he had aldready been under SALT for a year before being offered this. About 10 months ago - the gap between his spoken words and his understanding was about 4 years

Justers Wed 12-Jan-11 19:20:15

Thank you always that is encouraging that there is still plenty time for things to work through I just thought that the quicker he had therapy the better and tought that one to one was the norm. Thanks ragged, I feel that he listens well and takes direction well at home but this obviously doesn't translate in the nursery environment which is why I thought they would concentrate more on pronounciation.

Justers Wed 12-Jan-11 20:09:13

can i also ask if you had an ENT referral as well as SALT?

maxybrown Wed 12-Jan-11 21:46:36

do you mean me Justers or someone else? blush

kbaby Wed 12-Jan-11 22:51:24


My ds was refered for speach thrapy when he was 3.5 via his nursery.

He goes to a local speech and language centre. He attends once a week with me and we have a 30 min session with the therapist, she also provides work for us to do at home.

His problem is that he is hard to understand as he mispronounces his letters ie 'd' is said 'g' so drum is gum etc.

The first 10 or so sessions involved him listening to her say the sounds correctly, She would sound a letter and get him to find it on a picture card. I wasnt sure about this at first because I kept thinking how is he going to improve how he says the sound if he isnt saying it. But she advised me that the first part of speech is correctly hearing and understanding the sound not getting him to say it. Anyway since then the sessions have moved on to him saying the sound and her finding tricks to get him to recognise when he has said the sound correctly.
Most of the work we have to do at home as she say a 30 min session is not going to do it on its own and we have to do a lot of homework. We mostly play games by saying silly words beginning with 'd' etc or other times I break the word that he says incorrectly down and we say it together slower etc. Its been a hard slog and hes been going now for 7 months but in the last few weeks hes made a big improvement.

Apologies I just realised Ive gone on a bit.

Justers Thu 13-Jan-11 17:59:42

Yes sorry maxybrown I did mean yourself,loujay and always. That's interesting kbaby that you got one to one sessions regarding pronounciation as that what I thought we would be getting and it is great that you have noticed an improvment. I did feel a bit better today when someone told me that Einstein didn't speak until he was 4!

maxybrown Thu 13-Jan-11 18:04:49

Justers, because DS has a very unusual nasaly sound thing that he uses - he has been referred for many things lol! he had hearing test at hospital - all spot on. Dental check and cleft lip and pallet vist - all fine but rec to see paed from the hospital visit. He wnated him testing for landau kleffner syndrome - type of childhood epilepsy that affects speech - all clear (and a night mare test!). We are back at the paed in 2 weeks also. It can take a long time to get SALT and not only that but the SALT that is really needed.

kbaby Thu 13-Jan-11 18:47:35

It's taken a long time to notice an improvement and at times I questioned the way they were teaching him ie him just listening, but eventually we are getting there. We are just down to 'd and t' sound to learn now. Saying sounds together is still an issue ie cool instead of school but theyve said that's age appropriate. I think we are lucky as if this didn't work we also have a speech school near by he could've attended a few days a week for intensive therapy.

Justers Thu 13-Jan-11 20:32:46

Thank you for your replies, there is obviously a wide variation in SALT service in different areas. I am waiting on an ENT referral so maybe they will be able to shed some more light on things.

ballstoit Thu 13-Jan-11 20:45:57

Am part way through a Speech Communication and Language Unit at uni and was pretty surprised to find that most SALT referrals star with group therapy around language.

2 of my 3 DC have had SALT due to problems with pronunciation, and both had one to one sessions.

I discussed this with my tutor yesterday and she explained that current thinking is that increasing the vocabulary is the quickest way to improve speech.

So, basically if your DS has a general delay in his speech, the first step is to increase the vocabulary he is confident in using. The majority of speech delays are improved through this approach. And even if they're not improved the increased vocabulary will make one to one sessions more productive should they be needed.

While you're waiting it's worth having a browse around the ICAN, Every Child a Talker, and the Talk to Your Baby websites as they've all got ideas for things you can do at home with him to help with his communication development.

HTH, sorry is a bit waffly, been reading all day!

Justers Thu 13-Jan-11 20:55:43

Thank you ballstoit, I will have a look at those websites. Yes I think I was also surprised that group therapy was recommended as at the start the therapist told me that this was not an ideal situation due to staff constraints- this didn't install much confidence from the outset!

GiantYorkiePud Thu 07-Jan-16 21:55:07

We're about to do a Phonological Awareness group in a couple of weeks. I was under the impression that group therapy is pretty standard especially when they're young. I a slightly miffed at the lack of info tho. 3 visits and still pre school have no plan of action from speech therapist. Neither do I other than practice letter sounds. Not sure they know what to do with mine.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: