Oral Language

oral languageWhat is an Oral Language Disorder/Delay?

Oral language involves speaking and listening (expressive and receptive language). Receptive language begins from birth when infants and parents interact with one another in the natural surroundings of the home environment. Starting with facial expressions, cries, laughter and gestures, babies will develop spoken language from these basic forms of communication.

Expressive language usually emerges at age 1 when babies speak their first words. Quickly, toddlers start combining words into phrases. By age 2, most toddlers are combining 2-3 words together, and that snowballs to 4-5 words by age 3. Four –year-olds are typically speaking in complete sentences, and the language of 5-year-olds is almost adult-like.

This early language development is the building block for achieving academic and social success.  Children who enter school with unresolved oral language disorders are at risk for learning disabilities ranging from difficulty following directions to challenges with reading comprehension, written expression, study skills and math.  These children may also have challenges with peer interaction.

How Can We Help?

The specialists at Jodie K. Schuller & Associates are professional speech and language therapists, many with over 25 years of experience in communicative disorders. Licensed by the state of California as speech-language pathologists, our therapists have also completed advanced training in specific techniques to enhance oral and written communication. Therapists have been trained to help children with social challenges using Michele Garcia Winner’s Social Thinking Curriculum. To help those with delayed speech development, therapists have taken advanced training in the Talk Tools approach to oral motor therapy and the Cycles approach to phonology. Having attended the Childhood Apraxia (CASANA) Conference, therapists have been trained to use the Kaufman, Strand and Prompt methodologies, among others, to help those with apraxia of speech. Therapists have studied the various methodologies recommended to treat children on the autism spectrum including PECS and Floortime. They are equipped to help nonverbal children using American Sign Language (ASL) and Alternative and Augmentative (AAC) devices. To facilitate the development of reading and written language development, therapists have attended training programs from coast to coast including post-graduate courses offered by the Landmark School of Education, the Wilson Reading System (based on Orton Gillingham) and the complete range of programs developed by Lindamood Bell including LIPS, Visualizing and Verbalizing, On Cloud 9 Math and Seeing Stars. Therapists have also been certified by the International Association of Orofacial Myology (IAOM) to diagnose and treat breathing and swallowing problems related to unhealthy oral resting postures, sucking habits and tongue thrust.

“Our family holds Jodie Schuller in the highest regard. Jodie’s effective intervention on behalf of our daughter has encompassed a full range of services including development of vocabulary, auditory memory, processing, and pragmatic language skills. Jodie’s expertise with regard to oral motor development has been the key to the improvement of our daughter’s clarity of speech. Jodie not only draws on her own extensive speech and language background, but continually incorporates effective research based strategies in her practice. Jodie’s work is top notch, her professionalism is unparalleled, and we couldn’t recommend her more highly.”

Brad and Mimi Adams, Parents

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