Thursday, February 26, 1998 at 07:14:06

Hello: Interesting topic.Are you a speech therapist? I am looking for some info to guide a 3 year old to pronounce S,not F.Is it too soon to be concerned about her speech?

- TS

No, I'm sorry I'm not a speech therapist, nor am I even an expert childhood language development.  However, what little I have studied (as part of my MA course on "Language Acquisition") suggests that such phonetic confusions are a natural part of every child's language development.  Perhaps the best thing for you (I presume you are talking about you and your own child) to do is to continue to model good speech.  The child will not be able to produce the correct sounds until she can distinguish the sounds in others' speech.  Eventually she will then produce it on her own.  Granted in the meantime you will have to endure it patiently.  I remember as a child I had difficulty distinguishing the 'aw' of saw from the 'll' sound in 'all'. Thus, I often said, to my parents' chagrin, "I sall it!"  But I got over it. Now I say, "I uh saw it!"

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