Since grad school, generalization of speech sounds into conversation has always been the hardest thing for me to help my articulation clients achieve. In a moment of frustration, my supervisor and colleague, Leslie Humes, shared this idea with me when I was struggling to get one of my kiddos to generalize their /s/ sounds. It’s called a Tally Counter (see pic). I was never exposed to this in grad school, so I was overwhelmed with joy when she showed it to me. This is how I have used it to help my kids generalize their target speech sounds.
Give it to your client and say that you are going to have a conversation with them while they hold this clicker. You instruct them to click everytime they say /s/.
This will help them do the following:
- Reduce their rate of speech significantly as they try to listen for /s/ in their speech.
- Increase their own ability to self monitor (and ultimately self correct) their speech productions.
- Increase generalization in conversation.
When my kiddos initially start using it, they say it’s pretty challenging. However, once they get the hang of it, they love it. I even do a point system with them and tell them if they get a certain amount of clicks outside of therapy, they can earn a prize from me. They LOVE this and parents do too because it really gets the kiddos motivated to consistently practice their speech sounds in conversation at home.
I have been extremely successful in generalizing speech sounds using this trick. Give it a try and see if it helps you.
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District Speech and Language Therapy specializes in speech therapy, physical therapy, and occupational therapy solutions, for both children and adults, in the Washington D.C and the Arlington Virginia areas.