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Classroom Activities for Children With Articulation Problems

By Andrea Helaine, eHow Contributor

An articulation disorder occurs when someone has difficulty making sounds. Sounds can be left off, substituted or changed by using another sound. Young children often have difficulty with certain sounds; for instance, they may replace the "R" sound with "W." Some articulation problems occur naturally and resolve themselves when the child comes to a certain age. If the errors continue past the expected age, then they may be considered part of an articulation disorder. It is important for teachers to promote proper speech and articulation by providing classroom activities that reinforce speech sounds.

Phonics Games

Phonics games can help children improve the articulation of specific sounds, like r, s, l and others that may present problems. Games like matching pictures of words that rhyme or start and end with a certain sound can help promote awareness of the sequence of sounds in a word. Have students practice phonics by giving them worksheets or allowing access to a phonics computer game. A phonics game may omit a sound or word, and the student needs to match the correct letter or sound to the picture. This can help children with articulation problems learn to sound out the word correctly and visualize the object.

I Spy

Play "I Spy" using a specific sound and name objects in the classroom, around the school or around the neighborhood. Make sure that the game targets specific sounds, like objects that end in "p" or "t."

Tongue Twisters

Practice tongue twisters or phrases that are designed to be difficult to articulate well. Some tongue twisters can help children learn how to articulate words properly. Reading books like "Fox in Socks" by Dr. Seuss provides rhyming tongue twisters that can be helpful in learning pronunciation and articulation.

Practice Phone Call

Break students into pairs or small groups and have them pretend to make a phone call using a script that emphasizes the letters which are difficult for each child.

Storybooks

Read stories aloud and write down words that the child is having difficult with in order to review them later. Make sure that the child knows the meaning of the word and each letter in the word during the review process. Reading aloud can help students verbalize the speech. After reading the story, talk with them about the story to encourage thinking aloud.

Speech Therapy

Having your child or student work with a speech therapist in group work or one-on-one can help them learn articulation. Speech therapists often use games, books, and other activities to maintain the child's interest and reinforce articulation.