One thought on “From Signs & Pictures To Speech

  • November 6, 2010 at 8:23 pm

    Pictures and sign are not just useful for establishing communication; they are also great as a back-up method for when speech fails under stress.

    Because I’m hyperlexic (big word for “a natural reader whose comprehension lags behind reading ability”), my “first language” is written, not spoken, and I learned a lot about spoken communication after I taught myself to read. Nowadays, I can usually say what I want to say; but if it comes down to it and it’s really important, I have been known to write it out instead (typing is especially useful because pressing a key is easier than forming a letter). One example of this would be communicating with a doctor about physical symptoms–a very high-pressure situation with a time limit. Writing out what I want to say, and either reading it or giving it to the doctor, will ensure I say what needs to be said. And I’m not even officially speech delayed (my major issue is communicative speech, not speech itself)–imagine how much more useful this is to someone who took much longer to learn to speak than I did!

    I think it’s important not to remove alternative communication choices even after speech has been established. They may still be more efficient, easier to use under pressure, or less prone to miscommunication even when speech has been learned.

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