The Golden Rule
So what is the Golden Rule of Rapid Speech Therapy?
The golden rule is elegant in it’s simplicity. Accuracy always comes first. When you think about it, it makes a lot of sense. When we practice something, we need to make sure that we are practicing it correctly. Practicing incorrect productions defeats the purpose.
Accuracy is only half of the equation though. Practicing accuracy on it’s own is limiting. We need to challenge and stretch ourselves. We do this by adding speed into the mix.
Speed is Critical
Speed is a critical skill to have when it comes to speech sound production. When you think of the sounds that your child can say accurately in conversation, they can say these sounds rapidly in isolation. When we talk, speech production is rapid. Everything that is happening in the mouth is happening extremely fast. It is happening automatically as well.
When was the last time you had to concentrate on saying a /p/ or a /b/? It doesn't happen. Yet every client learning to say a new speech target correctly has to focus to say the sound accurately. These initial productions usually take effort and lack smoothness. The quickest way I know to develop the smooth, effortless and automatic productions is practice and lots of it.
When we practice for speed while trying to maintain accuracy, we are positioning ourselves into the optimal training zone. This is where good things really start to happen. With practice will come a practice effect. A noticeable difference in the productions and performance that was not present initially. This is what speech therapy is all about. Making a difference through practice.
They way to make that difference quicker is by practicing consistently. To truly accelerate the process, the parent or some other homework agent needs to be on board to do the practice. If it is only the SLP doing the practice, the progress will be in the slow lane. If others are involved helping practice for accuracy and speed, the level of progress will accelerate. It is a simple equation:
Try building these principles into your daily homework drills. The results may surprise you. Feel free to reach out to me and let me know how it is going. I am here if you have any questions.
Do you want to learn how to best support you child? Download the 20 best tips for speech practice.