I She Shix Fissiesh Shwim By A Shtarfiss.

Under the sea

There’s a particular speech issue Sassy has had since she could talk. It’s an adorable inability to pronounce the “sh” sound. So every word with “sh” in it has a simple “s” sound.

fish becomes fiss
wish becomes wiss
dish becomes diss
sure becomes ssure

Some people advised me to take her to speech therapy to fix it right away.

As an unschooler, that goes against my grain. If something isn’t a problem for her, then I’m not going to take her in to get “fixed” just because it’s a problem for someone else. Especially in the early years, when I want her to be confident and fearless and NOT worrying about saying things the ‘right’ way or the ‘wrong’ way. So, the speech therapy never happened, and for 6 years she went merrily on her way–totally unaware of the role the sound “sh” plays in words. We all cherished (or, cherissed) her word pronounciation, even if sometimes we couldn’t understand what she was saying.

This past week we got out Python Path, Word-Ending Gamewhich we haven’t played in a while.

One of the word endings was -ash. So I helped her sound it out by saying, “See this “S-H”? That makes a “shhhhh” sound. She copied the sound, which was the first time I knew she could. “When you put the ‘a’ in front of it, it says, “ash”. She repeated it. Then I said, if this didn’t have the “h” on the end, it would make the “sssssssss” sound. So when you put the ‘a’ in front of it, it says, “ass”. She repeated it, and then started laughing. “You said ‘ass!'”

Ever since then, she’s put two and two together and is starting to differentiate between the ‘s’ and ‘sh’ sound. It’s a process in flux, however, and now she sometimes assumes that everytime she says ‘s’ should actually be the ‘sh’ sound.

At the aquarium, instead of saying, “I see six fishes swim by a starfish!” she said, “I she shix fissiesh shwim by a shtarfiss!” which I found even more awesome.

Reach out

Here’s to kids, aquariums, speech impediments, celebrating childhood, and loving the unique quirks of the people around us.


4 Responses

  1. my girl says ‘wove’ instead of ‘love’ and i see no reason to correct it. she knows the difference, if others don’t you know what i say…!!

  2. Awwwww!!! Love it !!! : D Adorable!!!

  3. Thats cute – I love how their minds work

    Both my kiddos went to speech – I think I viewed it a little differently…for Matthew I was very anti speech at first, I didn’t see the point, he was going to grow into it and my son did NOT need to be fixed. But I took him, and it was actually kinda of nice, the tutor came to my house, and he was awesome, and I guess I viewed it as one more person to love and care for my kid. I was lucky. When maddie went to speech we got the same guy, and then she saw another lady too These teachers actually became very big parts of our life. We valued them, as they valued my kids. It was recommended that maddie continue on with speech when she turned 3, and I decided against it. This would have put her into the “system” …its one thing to have the speech people come to my house and have basically a play date with my kids, its another issue to have her go to a school and work on her speech, not at that age. That I wasn’t comfortable with.

    I know that she will grow into her speech, it still kinda tricky to understand her at times, (she has a few letters that she doesn’t pronounce) but everyonce in awhile we’ll slow it down, and then other people can understand her besides me 😉
    Have you ever read “Stand Tall Molly Lou Melon?”..that is basically my girl to a T

  4. What she said, Shashy that is, takes some talent. I think I would have to laugh so hard just hearing a sentence like that! My little lady can’t say smart…if come out fart, as in “you are so fart mom.” How can that not be funny! Or now she can’t say the “J” sound. So instead of “jumping” all the time she “thumps” everywhere she goes. I think it adorable at three…at times I want to change that and tell her it’s not right but that just makes her one step closer to a big kid, and I am not ready for that.

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