Steve spoke perfect English except for /r/. Steve’s first language was German, but he grew up speaking English, as well, but could never seem to get /r/. He stated that his brother also could not produce an /r/. ( this was an important clue) As an assistant professor he was becoming more frustrate d when his students could not understand his /r/ production. “Rock” was produced as “lock,” “roll” was loll,” and “read” was ” lead,” confusing in the best circumstances. After an initial evaluation which evaluated among other things the oral structures and his ability to produce /r/ in a variety of context, it was clear that Steve’s upper lip did not round in the way required for the /r/ sound. After a few lip strengthening exercises and direct instruction on tongue placement, Steve for the first time in his life produced an /r/ sound. Let’s Rock ad Roll! 3 sessions later Steve was making a great /r/. It would take more time to make this sound a permanent part of his speech, but with regular and consistent practice, Steve would have his /r/.
Published by Kai Long
Kai currently lives in MA and is interested in collaborating with others to develop a deeper understanding of our speech and language needs. View more posts
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