Are you one of those people who wants to ask: Why? If you re, look around. If you just want to get things done, just contact me.
Does my child need help?
How can I help you?
Speech and language therapy
About Doctor Aubrey Nunes
About Doctor Aubrey Nunes
All my life, I have been fascinated by speech and language…. I remember at school one day our teacher showed us a picture of a cat on a mat…. “C, A, T makes cat”
Should you want to get in touch and discuss anything further, please use the details on this page.
A detailed compilation of references used throughout this site, along with explanations of key phrases and terms.
Love and observe
You are special to your child, and your child is special to you.
What your child wants most is you.
Time to talk
The magic of conversation
Possible words therapy
Helping the child say whatever word or words he or she wants to say…. guiding him or her towards an understanding….
If you can see something is wrong with your child, you want to know what it is, and have it explained in terms you can understand.
All living humans have the same apparatus for speech … The engineering and the learning are both extraordinary.
S and Z problems
The speech sounds …. broken down into …. smaller, more easily achievable steps.
…. positive experiences are more motivating than negative ones…
Stories are magic.
The child’s mind
… linguistics prompts a focus on what is happening in the mind of the child.
… traditional songs often have a chorus…, for example… E – I – E – I _ O.
This checklist covers the whole range of ages from toddlers to teenagers.
Norms – of what?
Normalities and abnormalities
Exceptions to exceptions
Every child is special and unique…. There are patterns in disorder. But there are exceptions to exceptions.
To intervene – or not?
With a child with a developmental impairment there is an obvious question: Will the child just grow out of it?
I make notes at the end of every session. I like to share these…
What children say is endlessly fascinating.
…. three well-accepted milestones…
…. naturally learning one new word from one hour to the next.
Regularities and universals
…. there are regularities and universals… by the way human language has evolved.
Language is creative ….
Curiosity and attention
Curiosity drives the child to attend to something…
Meeting of minds
Children say interesting things… This may seem like a quite extraordinary meeting of minds.
Patterns in disorder
Particular words are mispronounced in particular ways at particular stages of development. Why should this be?
Why should it be that developmental problems with speech and / or language are typically complex…?
There are many different ways of looking at the structuring of language. Literature, poetry and prose, once considered the main reason for any interest in language, plainly do not involve science in the modern sense. But the narrative of stories, the rhythm of poetry, and even the logic of creating them, all enter speech and language therapy. We experience language in conversation. There are conventions about taking turns to talk, These conventions are sometimes regarded as rules. But the rules of conversation, if this is what they are, are quite different from those which make PSKETTI for spaghetti not a possible word of English.
Cats, dogs, people, and compositionality
What makes human language different from any non-human system of communication is that it is ‘compositional’…
Your last word
Although all languages have complexities, the complexities vary from one language to another. And these variations have to be learnt.
I try to keep my use of technical terms to a minimum….
Ax, ex, ics, and ologies
Linguistics, as the scientific study of language is commonly divided into various areas…Here I just thumbnail some ideas.
The meaning of words in phrases and sentences
Linguistics as a branch of biology
Language in circumstances
Putting words into sentences
The sounds of speech or ‘phonemes’
The organisation of the speech sounds as a system
Combining the speech sounds
Linguistics by numbers
…. sound and meaning…. the conscious recognition of this relation.
Talking and understanding are not just about words but about the structures into which the words go.
Lexicon / vocabulary
Words with meanings
Change and variation
All languages change.
Nuts & Bolts
…. levels of structure – as with the germination of seeds, roots, and shoots.
…. the smallest pulses in the sound structure of speech.
The word, word, is problematic….
Sounds or letters?
Speech sounds or ‘phonemes’ as the smallest units keeping ‘words’ apart?… But … there are actually smaller units of difference, known as ‘features’.
Smallest elements of meaning
Marked, unmarked, and derived structure
Minimising the storage
such as those which distinguish ‘toe’ from ‘doe’ by just a variation … known as ‘voicing’
…. pitch, length and loudness to create rhythms
… a ‘sing song’ voice
Ways of looking
A learnability space
What the learner HAS to take account of
One human language
The underlying commonality across languages
Two ways of characterising incompetence in speech
Posible and impossible complexities
Teaching and learning
A word missing in English
…. What makes language special is that it is ‘compositional’
Change and variation
Speech and language do not stand still
And the faculty of language
Most children with problem learning to read and write previously had or still have a problem with speech and language, suggesting that there may be an underlying commonality.
Genius and bureaucracy
Learning to read and write
The alphabet is mostly a set of arbitrary, abstract representations.
Over more than 5,000 years by at least 8 individuals
Four clever letters
Linking shapes and sounds
The tragedy of English spelling
A story of missed opportunity
What would Shakespeare have said?
The English language
Continual change – over centuries and human life times
A sound inventory
Stops, nasals, fricatives, affricates, liquids, and glides, with a richly-complex and unstable vowel system
Of written English – a quart in a pint pot
In work with children there is a long tradition of trying to make this enjoyable rather than painful. There is also an emerging idea that it is necessary to take account of the process by which speech and language evolved.
Modesty and caution
For your child
500 years of taking cues from children
Questions, answers, and a paradox
A first language
Out of Africa
A logical problem
In the acquisition of language
Of subtle analysis
Speech, language and biology
The Sound Pattern of English
A benchmark of precision
From a link in the footer
Order, disorder and evolution
The force of evidence from modern language
From factions of a second to hundreds of thousands of years
Before the beginning
Laying the foundations – five precursor steps
The natural process
Expectations, minds, schedules
The largest experiment in history
Nine critical advances
Going beyond Nunes (2002)
And their limits – two opposite scepticisms
Reconciling two, seemingly contradictory traditions
Myths and burials
A speculation about autism
A disorder with respect to the linguistic analysis of the here and now?
A gaping hole
Speech and Language UK report
1.7 million children in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are behind in talking and understanding.