Articulation is the "speech" part in Speech & Language Therapy. Some sounds, such as "p," "m," and "b," are learned as early as 1 year of age. Other sounds, like "sh," "r” and blend sounds often are not completely mastered until the early school years. Children should make all the sounds of English by 7 years of age but many children learn these sounds much earlier.


Someone has an articulation problem when he or she produces sounds, syllables or words incorrectly so that listeners do not understand what is being said. An articulation problem sometimes sounds like baby talk because many very young children do mispronounce sounds, syllables, and words. But words that sound cute when mispronounced by young children interfere with the communication of older children and adults.

what causes an articulation problem?

Articulation problems may result from a hearing impairment. Children learn their speech sounds by listening to the speech around them. This learning begins very early in life. If children have frequent ear infections during this important listening period and subsequently suffer from glue ear, they may fail to learn some speech sounds.
Articulation problems may also be related to a weakness of the oral muscles. If this is the cause, the Speech & Language Therapist at LOGOS will train the oral muscles with special exercises before articulation therapy can begin.

will a child outgrow an articulation problem?

Children will usually become more understandable as they mature, but some children and adults will need direct training to help them overcome all of their articulation errors.

In articulation therapy, we teach patients to perceive differences between similar sounds and to produce the new sound first in isolation, then in syllables, words, at phrase and finally at sentence level. The last step is for them to carry over the sound and make it automatic in their spontaneous speech.

How can I help?

  • Don't interrupt or correct the child. Don't let anyone tease or mock (including friends or relatives).
  • Present a good model. Use the misarticulated word correctly with emphasis. If the child says, "That's a big wabbit," you can say "Yes, that is a big rabbit. A big white rabbit. Would you like to have a rabbit?"
  • Don’t let anyone “translate” for the child, this will encourage them to pronounce more clearly.

"I’m still somewhat stunned as to how speedily our son has absorbed the techniques you’ve shown him, carefully pronouncing the sounds with real determination and pride." Samira Ahmed, mother of 4-year-old