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Why speech-language therapy may be the PERFECT fit for children with literacy issues.

When thinking about getting help for reading or reading disorders, going to speech therapy usually isn’t the first thing that people think of; however, it SHOULD be! Speech therapy could hold the key to success for a struggling reader.

Reading and writing are both forms of language or communication. We use writing or reading to communicate our thoughts and learn new things. Who better to teach communication than a speech language pathologist or speech therapist who SPECIALIZES in communication and language?

ASHA (The American Speech Language and Hearing Association), the governing board of speech language pathologists and audiologists states that:

“Speech-language pathologists (SLPs) have the specialized knowledge and experience needed to identify communication problems and to provide the help that children need to build critical language and literacy skills. SLPs are often the first professionals to identify the root cause of reading and writing problems through a child’s difficulty with language. SLPs help children to build the skills they need to succeed in school and in life.

Key elements of a speech-language pathologist’s academic training relating to early language and literacy development include skills to:

  • Build and reinforce relationships between early spoken language and early pre-literacy abilities and consider influences of parent-child interactions in early shared storybook interactions;
  • Address difficulties involving phonological awareness, memory, and retrieval;
  • Teach children to use tactile-kinesthetic and auditory cues in reading and writing;
  • Analyze how the language demands of textbooks, academic talk, and curriculum may stress a student’s capabilities at different age and grade levels; and
  • Conduct fine-grain analyses of written language, including spelling, to generate intervention that matches the needs of individual students.”

Does speech therapy work for reading and writing disorders?

“ The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association’s (ASHA) National Outcome Measurement System (NOMS) data indicates that more than 70% of teachers who responded to a survey believed that students who received SLP services demonstrated improved pre-reading, reading or reading comprehension skills. A majority of teachers also cited improvements in the student’s listening and written language skills and ability to communicate in socially-appropriate ways (pragmatics).”

For additional information on the role of a speech language pathologist in regards to reading and writing, please visit:

Learning WHY your child may be struggling with reading is the first step in helping your child develop the necessary skills to become an efficient and successful reader. If you are interested in a full literacy evaluation by a licensed skilled language pathologist who specializes in literacy, please feel free to contact our office at 704-821-0568.

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One thought on “The Struggling Reader and a Speech Language Pathologist”

  1. That’s cool that a majority of teachers also cited improvements in the students listening and written language skills when they received SLP services. Writing is a form of communication, too. My son has taken a little longer than average to start speaking; I may try to get speech services for him.

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