This is the area most individuals think about when they think about speech. Speech sound production is how we use the motor movements needed to make a sound. For example, to make the “f” sound you must touch your top teeth on your bottom lip. If these movements do not occur, then the “f” sound would not sound correct. Speech sound production can also be impacted by a child’s phonological system. A child’s phonological system includes the skills necessary to use different sounds to make words. It also includes the natural process of speech development patterns that a toddler goes through. For example, it would be completely normal for a young toddler to say “da” for the word “dad”. This is called final consonant deletion. When a child gets older it could become increasingly difficult to understand their speech if some of their words did not have the final consonant.
What to look for?
- Sounds are replaced by different sounds. Ex: The word “cat” sounds like “tat”
- Syllables are missing. Ex: “Banana” sounds like “nana”
- Sounds are missing Ex: “pan” sounds like “pa” or “top” sounds like “op”