Friday, November 23, 2012


I recently subbed in for a client I had over the summer with difficulty producing /r/.  It took most of the summer to establish the /r/ and we were working on it at the word level.  A few weeks ago, I filled in for her current speech language pathologist.   What a difference a few months can make.  We had established a pretty decent bunched up "r" using some of Pamella Marshalla's techniques.  It seemed like most of her errors came when the client dropped the back of their tongue down instead of keeping up for /r/ production.  "eeeee-ah." 

When I started our session, I was shocked by how good the /r/ was.  The new speech pathologist had taught them the retroflex /r/.  It was like watching a gymnastic gold medalist on the vault at the Olympics.  Everytime that tongue tip went up and "stuck" it's landing creating a beautiful, perfect /r/ sound. 

I started thinking about how sometimes the /r/ phoneme seems like the monster under your bed.  You know it's there, but you just don't want to look under the bed and have to deal with it.  Which led me to another TPT project:  MonsteRenegades.  

Each character has a name with the vocalic /r/ in it.  This download includes a card game, 4 game boards targeting individual /r/ phonemes and 3 dice games.  One of the boards consists primarily of "pop culture" /r/ words such as Justin Bieber or One direction. 

In addition, I included a sheet to practice /r/ in CV and VC shapes once the /r/ sound has been established.  

Originally I was going to write more about how to produce /r/ but there are some great resources out there. 

Here are some of my favorites: 
  • Pamella Marshalla, Successful R Therapy.  She is a really entertaining speaker-I'd recommend attending a workshop if you can.  If not, her book is very thorough. 
  • Entire World of /r/.  I love their Advanced screening for /r/.  Very helpful for determining starting lexicons for /r/.  Also, the R probe lists contain comprehensive word lists for therapy activities. 
  • SatPac: Articulation for the 21rst century.  I've had some success in establishing the /r/ using these techniques.  This is a computer program which generates individualized word lists allowing you to remove sounds the student is unable to produce.  Drill work includes some metronome work to teach the student to produce the phonemes at more of a conversational pace.  The initial word lists generally consist of nonsense words which rely on coarticulation to improve the student's ability to establish the correct phoneme.  
  •  I love the ideas on this blog, plus really fun activities for the child for introducing the /r/ phoneme. 
  • Judith Kuster has a variety of ideas for elicitation of the /r/ phoneme at her website:
I'd love to hear what techniques for /r/ you are using. 

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...