I’ve been wanting to do a blog post about this subject that is near and dear to my heart, but I’m not sure I can do it justice. In any case, here I go.
Warning: this is going to be a long one because I have lots to say!
We rarely even speak in single words. We speak in connected strings of syllables.
Better yet, try to teach a child to sound out these words. Talk about confusing!!
It breaks all the rules because of coarticulation.
The vowel a takes on a nasal quality- changing it completely.
(just because I’m a complete word nerd and I love this stuff!)
(and all SLPs know the voiced counterpart of /s/ is /z/.)
Simply put, every sound affects every other sound it “sits” next to.
Well, this is what I took away from Dr. Hudson.
Once we’ve established a correct sound production in isolation, let’s take a coarticulation approach to therapy. After we teach a child a sound in isolation, we usually proceed to practicing it in the initial positions of words (beginning sound). At this point let’s pair the consonant with vowels that will facilitate (not hinder correct production).
Some coarticulation environments make sounds trickier than others.
Here are the coarticulation “function environments:”