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How Children Develop their Speech Sounds

In this article we will discuss:


Boy making random speech sounds and might need speech and language therapy from Better Speech

Children learn how to say sounds by listening to the adults around them speak. The same way they learn the language. Sounds are typically acquired in a certain order with some sounds being learned early (like "p" and "b") and some are learned later (like "th" and "r"). When children are very young, it's also normal for them to change around the sounds in words, for example, they may say "wat" instead of "rat" and "tum" for "thumb." Yet, as they get older, their pronunciation of should be more accurate.


Sounds like F sound speech therapy and V sound speech therapy can many times go hand in hand since the sounds are so similar. One is voiced (V) and one is voiceless (F).


Kids develop sounds at their own pace.

Sometimes kids don't simply outgrow this way of speaking or they don't learn how to say every sound correctly. These children may have a speech sound delay or disorder and might need some extra help.


Speech sounds development in children has been studied and speech therapists use this information to determine if a child is producing sounds adequately for their age.

It is typical for children to say some sounds incorrectly as they learn to talk.


Get a consultation about your child's speech development

Speech therapy for child and adult

Children can pronounce some sounds earlier, like p, m, or w. Other sounds like z, v, or th take longer for them to acquire. Most children will be able to pronounce all sounds in English by the age of 8.

speech sound development chart

Speech Sound Development Chart


Speech sounds development in children has been studied and speech therapists use this information to determine if a child is producing sounds adequately for their age. This evidence-based chart can be used to determine if your child is producing the sounds they should be for their age.


A child who is not pronouncing these sounds by a typical age or is highly unintelligible may need to be evaluated by a speech-language pathologist to determine if they have a speech sound disorder or they just need a little bit of extra support. For example, speech therapy for the k sound might be necessary if a child is still not producing /k/ accurately past four years of age.

Are you wondering what speech sounds your child should be saying at their age? Download our free and simple chart here.

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Download PDF • 113KB

At Better Speech, we offer online speech therapy services convenient for you and tailored to your child's individual needs. Our services are affordable and effective - get Better Speech now.

 

About the Author

Lenora Edwards


I am ASHA Board Certified Speech Language Pathologist and Chief Knowledge Officer with Better Speech. Since obtaining my CCC’s in 2010, I have worked with individuals of all ages from little ones who are learning to understand and express themselves to adults who want to improve their speaking skills and become a more fluent and effective communicator. I love to teach and educate others, in my spare time I like reading, cooking and traveling!

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I'm not an English native speaker and I wanted to improve my speech. Better Speech onboarding process is AWESOME, I met with different people before being matched with an AMAZING Therapist, Christina. My assigned therapist created a safe place for me to be vulnerable and made all the sessions fun and helpful. Thanks to her, I received great feedback from my clients.

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Better Speech is a great program that is easy to use from home and anywhere online. Shannon was amazing at engaging our shy son - and building on their relationship each session! Her commitment to knowing him improved his confidence to speak and practice more. Truly appreciate her dedication. She cares for her clients.

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Better Speech is an excellent opportunity to improve your speech in the convenience of your home with flexible scheduling options. Our therapist Miss Lynda was nothing short of amazing! We have greatly appreciated and enjoyed the time spent together in speech therapy. Her kind, engaging and entertaining spirit has been well received. She will surely be missed.

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This service is so easy, i signed up, got a therapist and got to set up an appointment right away that worked with my schedule. so glad to see that services like speech therapy are finally catching up to the rest of the convenience age! therapy is great, i can't believe how many good tips, exercises and methods in just the first session. really recommend it!

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