Detect a lisp in your child's speech? Here's what you can do to help them get rid of it:
Thumb Rule no. 1
When your little one lisps, never respond in a similar manner. A lot of adults do it without realising it, thinking it's simply cute-talk; but in reality, it confuses the child because the message they're getting is that that's how people really talk.
Thumb rule no. 2
Children with a habit of thumbsucking are more likely to develop a lisp. Discourage this habit from the very beginning. If your child has a lisping problem, here are some ways in which you can help him overcome it.
First you need to find out whether your child has a frontal lisp or a lateral lisp. Accordingly, you can help him overcome the condition.
A Frontal Lisp: A frontal or an interdental lisp is the one in which the tongue sticks out between the front teeth.
A Lateral Lisp: In a lateral lisp, the air escapes from the sides of the tongue. This leads to difficulty in making sounds of 's' and 'z', which often causes difficulty in pronunciation.
Bite, Smile and Blow:
Tell your child to bite down, smile widely with teeth clenched together and then blow the air out forcefully. This will hold the tongue back to show them where the tongue should ideally be while talking.
Make a list of words that your child faces a difficulty with. Then, sit next to him facing the mirror. Pronounce the word slowly, showing them the tongue movement. Ask them to imitate the movement and say the word in the same way. This will help them understand the tongue movement and position for those particular words.
Record the problem words as they speak. Record the same words in your voice with the correct pronunciation. This way, even when you are not around, the child may go back to it and practice.
Ask your child to use a straw while drinking their milk or water. This will help the child understand how the tongue slides back while sucking onto the straw and this action can be replicated while speaking.
Alliteration means many words starting with the same sound or letters. For example, "Sally sells seashells by the seashore." Make up sentences that have similar sounding words and ask your child to repeat them a few times over.
Do let us know of any other fun, innovative and effective ways that you may have. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org.