Sang as musiekterapeutiese tegniek in 'n vroeë spraakopvoedingsprogram vir kinders met Downsindroom
Swanepoel, Magdalena Sophia
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A descriptive research project was undertaken to determine the neurological, organic and sociological causes and character of the speech impediment of children suffering from Down's syndrome in order to use singing therapy to accelerate speech acquisition and remedy indistinctive speech. The research project included a 'Dialog' computer investigation using the following key-words "singing and musical therapy, Down's syndrome and speech therapy"; a literature study and analysis of samples of beginner Afrikaans speech. According to the hypothesis the objectives of accelerating speech acquisition could be attained by methods directed at the accelerated motoric development of speech sounds and verbal and non-verbal prelinguistic skills, as well as providing a normal rearing setting conducive to communicative speech training in a meaningful and interactive manner. In order to obtain verbal content for a singing programme speech samples of 5 normal Afrikaans toddlers were compared to the those of 5 children with Down's syndrome at the same speech level. Similarities in the character of acquired speech and progression of speech acquisition was ascertained to gain guidelines for the development of a speech programme. The speech samples were used to compile a graded starter content and differences in acquisition were used as indicative of the need for special methods. The results of the research indicate that the speech problem is primarily articulative as caused by an impaired automatic retroactive muscular nervous system weakening reflexes. Impaired reflexes, a manifestation particular to the syndrome, give rise to speech acquisitional implications. The use of sensory stimuli as alternative to motoric reflexes as stimuli to start speech acquisition accompanied by singing therapy was discussed.
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