Speech Therapy: Introducing the G Sound
Introducing New Sounds
Let’s talk about the challenges we see in Speech Therapy when introducing the G sound to little ones. Replacing /d/ for /g/ is called a phonological pattern “fronting.” It’s typical for young kids to substitute sounds, but once past a certain age, we expect them to be able to produce the sound naturally. For the /d/ and /g/ sounds, we expect them to be able to produce these sounds by age 3. When errors persist, a Speech Language Pathologist can help intervene in Speech Therapy and determine if it’s a motor planning deficit or phonological in nature.
For example, can the child use their “speech helpers” (mouth, lips, tongue, palate) to produce the sound? Then if they can produce the sound, do they know when to use the sound? That’s where the approach of minimal pairs comes into play – we work on the target sound contrasted to the error sound. We need to teach the child when to use the sound because it changes the meaning of words. Some examples are “dough” and “go” or “dame” and “game.” As the child becomes familiar with the “sound rules” we can model words that have their sound. “Yes! Let’s play a GAME” while overemphasizing the word AND providing a gestural cue to the back of our throat.
Tools We Use In Speech Therapy
We also use multimodal prompts. First, we use visual cues such as using a mouth model. We also give a verbal cue -by telling them where to put the tongue. For example, your tongue is in the back for /g/ and in the front of the mouth for /d/ Next, we give gestural cues by touching where the sound may be produced so the child can “see” the sound.
Need More Information?
Remember, every child’s speech journey is unique and progress comes with practice. If you have any concerns about your child’s speech, let’s connect. Together, we can unlock a world of clear communication for your little superstar. Contact Us or fill out a New Patient Request Form to schedule a quick speech therapy screening to learn more about how we can help your little one.
For additional information, you can also check out the amazing resources available at https://www.asha.org/