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Habladores tard?os: ?una variaci?n del desarrollo normal? Por Michelle MacRoy-Higgins, Ph.D., CCC-SLP

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In adjusting the eligibility criteria for speech only children in Early Intervention, the New York State Health Department frequently stated that late talkers were a variation of normal development. The more stringent eligibility was intended to decrease services to late talkers because it believed that these children would catch up to their peers over time. The following information reflects research and resources compiled by Michelle MacRoy-Higgins, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, Assistant Professor, Communication Sciences Program, Hunter College-CUNY, who has researched the topic of late talkers and presented at the 2010 ASHA convention on the topic.

Who are Late Talkers
Los conversadores tard?os reflejan 15% de la poblaci?n de ni?os peque?os y se identifican alrededor de los dos a?os de edad cuando los ni?os producen menos de 50 palabras y no combinan palabras. El hablador tard?o tambi?n tiene un desarrollo auditivo, cognitivo, sensorial y motor normal. Un ni?o t?pico a los dos a?os de edad usar?a m?s de 300 palabras y unir?a oraciones de 2 a 4 palabras.

Por qu? los hablantes tard?os no son una variaci?n del desarrollo del lenguaje normal
Las caracter?sticas del lenguaje de los hablantes tard?os no reflejan el desarrollo t?pico del lenguaje en las ?reas de:

1. Aprendizaje de palabras
Lenguaje receptivo (comprensi?n): Late talkers do not learn (point to) new words as accurately as their peers. (Ellis Weismer & Evans, 2002; MacRoy-Higgins, Schwartz, Shafer & Marton, 2009)
Lenguaje productivo (vocabulario expresivo): Una vez que los que hablan tarde dicen palabras, son lentos para agregar m?s palabras a sus vocabularios; no agregan sistem?ticamente palabras a sus vocabularios como se observa en los ni?os peque?os en desarrollo (MacRoy-Higgins et al., 2009).

2. Fonolog?a (sonidos)
Los sonidos en las palabras que dicen muestran retrasos y patrones desordenados. For instance, late talkers produce atypical sound errors, atypical sound patterns and show little change in development over time as compared to language-matched peers (Williams & Elbert, 2003)

3. Morfolog?a / sintaxis (gram?tica y combinaciones de palabras)
Una vez que los hablantes tard?os comienzan a combinar palabras, muestran patrones retrasados y desordenados. Por ejemplo, los que hablan tarde producen m?s errores que sus compa?eros de lenguaje (Thal et al., 2004)

4. Habilidades sociales
En riesgo de trastornos sociales / del comportamiento. Late talkers are less social than their peers; quality of parent-child relationships in late talkers is judged to be more stressful than parent-child relationships in typically developing toddlers (Irwin, Carter & Briggs-Gowan, 2002)

Are there Long-Term Implications for Late Talkers
La investigaci?n ha indicado que los bloomers tard?os muestran una mejora en las habilidades del lenguaje, pero que tienen un rendimiento significativamente peor que sus pares en lectura / alfabetizaci?n, sintaxis y morfolog?a (combinaciones de palabras / oraciones y gram?tica) y se observan d?ficits de vocabulario hasta los 17 a?os de edad.
Los ni?os peque?os con discapacidad espec?fica del lenguaje (SLI) demuestran dificultades significativas con todos los aspectos del lenguaje (comprensi?n, expresi?n y alfabetizaci?n / lectura).

Why is it Important to Provide Speech and Language Services to Late Talkers
Aproximadamente la mitad de los ni?os peque?os que hablan tarde ser?n etiquetados como que tienen un impedimento espec?fico del lenguaje en la escuela preescolar / primaria. Los que muestran mejor?a (tard?os) contin?an desempe??ndose peor que sus pares en las habilidades de lenguaje y alfabetizaci?n en la escuela primaria y secundaria.

Los hablantes tard?os no son una variaci?n del desarrollo normal porque a los dos a?os muestran patrones desordenados de
Vocabulary acquisition (understanding and naming)
Phonology (sound system)
Grammar
Social skills

Why is Early Intervention so Important for Late Talkers
Una base temprana en las habilidades del lenguaje oral es primordial para el desarrollo de las habilidades de alfabetizaci?n y lectura. Los ni?os que hablan tarde tienen un riesgo significativo de dificultades acad?micas y, por lo tanto, se beneficiar?an de la intervenci?n del lenguaje tan pronto como se identifique su trastorno del lenguaje.

Is Language Intervention for Late Talkers Effective
Language intervention for late talkers is effective. Late talkers receiving intervention by a Speech-Language Pathologist over a short period of time showed improved language skills (vocabulary, production of sentences, speech sound production) as compared with late talkers who did not receive intervention (Robertson & Weismer, 1999), and these results suggest that if untreated, late talkers will not improve their language at the same rate as their typically developing peers, with the significant risk of lifelong language difficulties impacting academic achievement, reading and literacy.

Referencias
Ellis Weismer S., & Evans, J.L. (2002). The Role of Processing Limitations in Early Identification of Specific Language Impairment. Topics in Language Disorders, 22(3), 15-29.

Irwin, J.R., Carter, A.S., & Briggs-Gowan, M.J. (2002). The Social-Emotional Development of Late-Talking Toddlers.Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. 41(11), 1324-1233.

Leonard, LB (2000). Los ni?os con trastorno espec?fico del lenguaje. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

MacRoy-Higgins, M. Schwartz R.G., Shafer, V.L., & Marton, K. (2009). Word learning and phonological representations in children who are late talkers. (Doctoral Dissertation), Graduate Center, CUNY, New York, NY.

Rescorla, L. (1989). The Language Development Survey: una herramienta de detecci?n para lenguaje tard?o en ni?os peque?os. Revista de trastornos del habla y la audici?n, 54, 587-599. 22)

Rescorla, L. (2009). Age 17 Language and Reading Outcomes in Late-Talking Toddlers: Support for a Dimensional Perspective on Language Delay. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research. 52, 16 30.

Robertson S.B. & Ellis Weismer, S. (1999). Effects of Treatment on Linguistic and Social Skills in Toddlers With Delayed Language Development. Journal of Speech, Language, Hearing Research. 42, 1234-1248.

Thal, D.J., Reilly, J., Seibert, L., Jeffries, R., & Fenson, J. (2004). Language Development in children at risk for language impairment: Cross-population comparisons. Brain and Language, 88, 167-179.

Williams, A.L., & Elbert, M. (2003). A Prospective Longitudinal Study of Phonological Development in Late Talkers. Language, Speech and Hearing Services in Schools, 34, 138-153.

Dra. Michelle MacRoy-Higgins has worked as a Speech-Language Pathologist for nearly 15 years. In addition to being a private practitioner, Michelle is an Assistant Professor in the Communication Sciences program at Hunter College (CUNY) and teaches graduate students in the areas of language development, language, phonological, articulation, motor speech and swallowing disorders in children. Michelle has worked clinically in a variety of settings including home-based, preschool, elementary school and private practice clinics; and has enjoyed working with a variety of children presenting with language, phonological, articulation, and feeding disorders ranging in age from birth through adolescents. Michelle s clinical and research expertise is with children who are late talkers. She enjoys working with children and their families to develop individualized and evidenced-based treatment, while having fun and encouraging communication success.

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