Your child is struggling with their speech milestones, but they have an additional hurdle. Your child is bilingual. While speaking multiple languages provides children with additional opportunities, it can make approaching speech therapy tricky, and some bilingual children can struggle when they receive the same therapy interventions as their monolingual peers. Let’s look at the challenges bilingual children can face when they struggle to reach milestones and how bilingual speech therapy can benefit them.
What is Bilingual Speech Therapy?
Bilingual speech therapy addresses communication disorders and difficulties with cultural competency through pathologists who are fluent in more than one language. Our specialists assess, analyze, and develop treatment plans for a variety of disorders that can include,
- Speech-sound disorders
- Social language deficits
- Cognitive-communication disorder
- Disfluent speech
- Receptive and expressive language impairments
For children who only speak English, a therapist will work with them to produce sounds and learn cognitive patterns related to English language communication. A bilingual speech therapist, however, works in both languages the child speaks, helping them learn additional sounds and cognitive patterns.
The Importance of Cultural Competency and Bilingual Acceptance
It’s important that our speech therapists understand the importance of language to the families of our bilingual children. If children are made to speak a language not spoken at home, it can cause communication difficulties later with family and lead to additional social anxiety. Our bilingual speech therapists work with your child in both of their languages to help them reach their varied milestones.
What is the Advantage of Bilingual Speech Therapy?
The first and most important advantage our bilingual speech therapy provides families in Huntingdon Valley is a therapist who speaks your language. Communication is, after all, the most important aspect of speech therapy. Our bilingual speech therapy also offers practical advantages for bilingual children. Our bilingual speech pathologists can,
- Address specific speech pattern problems related to both of your child’s languages
- Determine patterns that are part of normal linguistic articulation
- Help children recognize phonetic similarities and differences in their languages that can help them improve
- Help children reach their linguistic milestones with a holistic approach to speech and learning