PHONOLOGYPhonology refers to the sound system of a language and the rules that govern the sound combinations. Although it is considered a substrate of a specific language, it is often treated under the realm of speech sound production skills.
A phonological process is a typical error pattern used by all children to simplify adult speech they hear but as of yet, are unable to produce due to the constraints of their developing oral-motor structures. The use of phonological processes should naturally fade as a child’s speech sound development progresses throughout the pre-school years.
Phonological Process Disorder:
Sometimes a child continues to use phonological processes even after they are able to produce sounds/words correctly because they are unaware of the error pattern. If a child is using several phonological processes, it can significantly impact speech intelligibility. These patterns become part of a child’s automatic speech production patterns and may require direct instruction to correct. The presence of phonological processes can have a significant impact on a student's overall speech intelligibility.
The following are descriptions of some of the most common phonological processes:
Cluster Reduction: Omitting one of the sounds from a consonant blend.
Ex. pider/spider, top/stop, pane/plane.
Final Consonant Deletion: Omitting the final consonant sound in words.
Ex. she/sheep, cow/couch.
Fronting: When a child is fronting, he/she is producing the k/g/ing sounds with sounds produced in the front of the mouth (most commonly t/d).
Ex. tat/cat, dod/dog.
Stopping: Some speech sounds are produced by using a long stream of air, this includes “sh”, “f”, “s”, “v”, and “z”. When a child is "stopping" their sounds, they are substituting these long sounds for a short sound such as a “p” “t” or “b”.
Ex. tun/sun, bacume/vacume.
Gliding: Gliding occurs when the “w” or “y” sounds are being substituted for the ‘“l” and “r” sounds. Ex. yeaf/leaf, wed/red.