The ambiance of learning often motivates speech impaired kids to learn, even though they are not enthusiastic initially. In a normal classroom scenario, kids are motivated to engage in class activities and pick up lessons when they find others like them do so. They are constantly looking around to find kids absorbed in learning and they want to be a part of the process, too. It is no different for children with language disorder or speech disorders.
Speech therapists can choose to work individually or in a classroom scenario. It depends on the child and the ability to pick up lessons or instructions. It is wrong to conclude that individual lessons are always beneficial for a language-deficient child. In such lessons, the onus of performance is so evident and intimidating for some children, they are not able to relax and engage in activities. They are always worried about taking wrong steps and being chided for their mistakes.
On the other hand, a lesson in a classroom full of kids requiring speech therapy, kids can mingle among equals. They are not unduly scared about what will happen during the course of the lesson. Developing this perfect classroom ambiance is the work of a speech therapist. A good way to do that is by building up daily routines. Kids love and hate routines equally! To have the best of both worlds, you have to mix and match. Stick to a routine on most days and break through it once in a while as a pleasant surprise.
A tested way to develop class ambiance is to take the lead of children. Make the learning child-specific instead of teacher or subject specific. Allow the child to take the lead. Let them decide on the word games they want to play and for how long. Ideally, you should change activities after about 30 minutes to prevent boredom from setting in. However, if the children are responding wonderfully, you can stretch it out to an hour or so. After that, most children will start to get restless!
There is no blanket rule to get this class ambiance correct. It depends entirely on the composition of a class. Speech therapists can use the techniques or expansion, extension and self-talk to get the children speaking. You can encourage them into questioning or praise them for being attentive. Using all the resources available, it is possible to build up a learning-friendly ambiance for language-deficient kids.
For details about handling such speech impaired kids in classrooms or otherwise, speak to our team at Speech Plus