Step 1: Encourage your child to look in a mirror and make a big smile so they are showing all their teeth, making sure they are closed together. Ask your child to copy you while you say a long 's' sound also looking in the mirror where your child can see your mouth clearly. Show them that you don't need to open your teeth and poke your tongue between your teeth while making the 's' sound.
If your child is able to imitate the 's' sound without their tongue showing between their top and bottom teeth, they may benefit from continuing to the more complex exercises below. However, if this first step was difficult for them, a speech pathology consultation is recommended in order to help your child achieve this goal within an optimal timeframe and while having loads of fun.
It is essential to keep reminding yourself that speech therapy is achieved by working through a hierarchy. It can seem as though little progress is being made, however when the skills are broken down, often this is how significant progress is discovered. Speech pathologists are qualified to break down these skills and train parents to see and track all progress that is made.
The Flexible Speech App breaks down these typical levels that need to be achieved in order to see success with lisp therapy. The App showcases twelve levels of difficulty that can be commenced as soon as your child has mastered the exercise in Step 1 above. Often, once children have mastered the first few levels within the Flexible Speech App they can skip some of the twelve levels as they learn the new articulation techniques within the App and they become engrained/subconscious.
In the next blog post I'll explain how to use level 1 of the App to target a lisp.
If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me.