Oral Language Intervention Program
(3-18 years old)

This program is offered to preschool, school-age, and secondary-level students who struggle with receptive and/or expressive modes of communication. This means that the child has difficulty understanding and/or using spoken language effectively.
Experts estimate that up to 5% of children in the United States have some type of language disorder, although many remain undiagnosed. When a child has a hard time understanding what he or she hears, that can be a deficit in either language processing or auditory processing, or a combination of the two.
According to the National Institutes of Health, the prevalence of Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) in children with learning difficulties has been found to be 43%. In addition, around 50% of children with Dyslexia also have coexisting APD. Usually, this deficit remains undiagnosed or is misdiagnosed as Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), learning disability, Dyslexia, and others when, in reality, these conditions present comorbidity. It is important to have the right type of intervention in place in order to address the root cause of the child’s listening and learning problems. Just because a child has normal hearing ability, it does not mean that a listening deficit has been ruled out. Any child who has difficulties attending to speech, understanding speech, remembering what has been heard, or tolerating noise may benefit from auditory or language processing testing and intervention.

Common signs of children with Auditory Processing Disorder:

  • consistently uninterested when people are speaking (daydreams often; seems to hear but not listen)
  • difficulty following oral directions
  • tends to forget things (people’s names, steps to complete a project in science lab, half of the things that he/she was asked to buy in the grocery store, etc.)
  • doesn’t pay attention when being read to
  • short auditory attention span; fatigues easily (gets lost in detailed conversations or lectures)
  • dislikes and is sensitive to loud noises
  • difficulty hearing with background noise
  • difficulty identifying where sounds come from
  • requests repetition (asks “huh?” often)
  • mishears words that sound similar (“cow” instead of “couch”, “free” instead of “three”, “seventy” instead of “seventeen”)
  • difficulty identifying, discriminating, and manipulating speech sounds (phonological processing)
  • history of ear infections

Common signs of children with Language Processing Disorder (receptive):

  • difficulty with word retrieval (word is on the tip of the tongue but doesn’t come out)
  • difficulty learning and remembering oral information including new vocabulary words
  • difficulty understanding riddles or jokes
  • difficulty understanding sarcasm or messages “between the lines”
  • often misunderstands what is asked, said, or written
  • needs repetition of new concepts during instruction (he/she usually “doesn’t get it”)
  • difficulty with reading comprehension
  • frequently answers “I don’t know” or “I forgot”
  • poor sequencing in receptive language
  • it takes a long time to answer a question

Common signs of children with Language Production Disorder (expressive):

  • uses generic language (frequently says “um” and substitutes precise words by more general words like “thing” or “stuff”)
  • uses descriptive, creative language (“that yellow thing we write with” instead of “pencil”)
  • mispronounces words that sound similar (“cow” instead of “couch”, “free” instead of “three”, “seventy” instead of “seventeen”)
  • mispronounces, shortens, or transposes words or syllables (“aminal” instead of “animal”, “Spughetti” instead of “Spaghetti”, “divative” instead of “derivative”)
  • poor sequencing in expressive language
  • limited vocabulary and general knowledge compared to children the same age
  • inaccurate grammar with persistent error patterns
  • speaks in incomplete sentences and confuses verb tenses
  • may not talk much or often but understands what other people say
  • repeats or rehearses comments (uses certain phrases over and over again when talking or repeats the teacher’s words when answering a question)
  • limited variety of sentence structures when speaking; lacks elaboration during discourse
  • seems frustrated by inability to communicate thoughts
  • able to pronounce words and sounds, but sentences often don’t make sense or don’t convey what the child intends to say
  • poor conversational skills (vague, disjointed, rambling; gets off topic easily; lacks conciseness)
  • frequently answers “I don’t know” or “I forgot”
  • delayed responses
  • inconsistency in learning; needs review
Upon initial evaluation, a Student Intervention Plan (SIP) is customized based on his or her identified needs and goals. This intervention will start at the child’s readiness level and gradually increase in difficulty until the student reaches the expected level of language proficiency.

This intervention program includes most or all of the following components based on the assessment results:

  • phonological awareness development
  • word study
  • word finding/rapid naming skills
  • auditory memory training
  • following verbal directions
  • oral semantic development (understanding and use of words, phrases, and sentences)
  • oral syntax development (parts of speech, sentence structure)
  • oral expression (topic elaboration)
  • social language: basics of Pragmatics
  • listening comprehension of stories and informative readings
  • narrative skills with retellings (sequential language)
  • oral reasoning skills: problem-solving, making inferences and analogies, interpreting figurative language, and others
  • social-emotional development
  • Brain Integration Therapy for brain-and-body connection
Our intervention consists of two sessions per week for 60 minutes each at our Cypress/Fairfield location. Due to the intensive nature of this program and the unique language needs of students, we offer it only in one-on-one sessions at our regular rate of $40 per class.
The length of the intervention varies upon student needs, but it is usually about 8 to 10 months for students with mild deficiencies, and extends up to 18 months in more severe cases. Thus, exiting the program will depend on individual progress and the readiness level achieved. Occasional referral to a Speech-Language Pathologist may take place if the Specialist deems it appropriate.
We highly recommend that the students in grade 2 and above who receive our Oral Language Intervention Program continue with our Written Language Intervention Program afterwards in order to promote a smooth transition from language to literacy and ensure the development of strong reading comprehension and written expression skills.