Language is sometimes described as a braid with six strands. Like a braid, each strand is intertwined with and affects the other strands. It becomes a puzzle to understand what pieces or strands are missing or broken for each child. There’s nothing like the joy of unlocking the puzzle of language with a child.
I evaluate all six strands of language and create plans that treat each client holistically. My specialty is finding the “missing puzzle piece” that is keeping your child from meeting his or her maximum potential.
Six Strands of Language
Pragmatics: Using language to interact socially. Knowing to make eye contact when you talk, or understanding what a gesture or facial expression means is a pragmatic skill.
Phonology: Using and understanding sounds. Speaking with correct sounds, discriminating what sounds you hear and in what order are examples of phonology.
Semantics: Knowing what words mean and how they relate. Understanding how the words “big” and “enormous” are both the same and different is an example of semantics. Another example is knowing why words belong together (sunny, windy, rainy) or why a word doesn’t belong (sunny, windy, brown, rainy) with others.
Syntax: How we put sentences together and how we change words to fit each sentence Using “she” at the beginning of a sentence but changing it to “her” when it is part of a clause is using syntax. Changing a word by adding “ed” or “ing” or changing word order is another example.
Discourse: when we speak or read language that is longer than one sentence. Participating in a conversation or telling a story is an example of spoken discourse, while reading or writing a story is an example of written discourse.
Metalinguistics: Understanding how to use language in your culture. Playing with language, such as telling a joke, or understanding that you speak in a different manner depending on what group you are with is metalinguistic knowledge.