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Easy Does It® for Articulation A Phonological Approach
Ages: 3-8   Grades: PreK-3

Expand the word repertoire of children with highly unintelligible speech.  Use a treatment sequence and carefully-selected stimuli based on the work of Barbara Williams Hodson and Elaine Pagel Paden.  



  • Improve intelligibility in children with severe to profound disorders
  • Develop a functional word repertoire


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Experienced and beginning clinicians love the Easy Does It series for their:  

  • detailed explanation of therapy techniques
  • systematic lesson plans
  • clear goals and objectives
  • student practice activities and materials

Easy Does It for Articulation A Phonological Approach is based on the premise of giving children with severe phonological processing disorders words they can successfully produce.  The words are carefully selected so the phonetic contexts of the target words do not contain other phonetic patterns that are typically deviant in children.   


The program targets twelve phonological processes.  Seven processes are primary or early-developing:

  • syllableness
  • consonant singletons (m, n, p, b, t, d, w, h)
  • velars (k, g)
  • alveolars (t, d)
  • stridents and two-consonant sequences (final, initial, and medial /s/ blends)
  • liquid /l/
  • liquid /r/

Secondary patterns are addressed if specific errors persist after the primary processes are established:

  • voicing (p/b, t/d, k/g, f/v, s/z, ch/y)
  • vowels
  • singleton stridents (f, s, y, ch, sh,)
  • glide sequences (tw, kw, sw, y)
  • three-consonant sequences (str, skr, spr, spl, skw)

Copy the student activity pages.  The two-book program provides:  

  • listening /auditory bombardment activities
  • learning activities such as cueing strategies and placement techniques
  • auditory bombardment pictures to print and color
  • reproducible flash cards for each level of the twelve phonological processes
  • activities and practice notes
  • family letter
  • oral motor activities
  • pictures of hand signals
  • response forms

Copyright © 2002

2-Book Set: 159-page therapy manual, 145-page materials book
  • Target sounds are considerably easier to elicit and faster to establish when the phonetic context is carefully selected (Hodson & Paden, 1991).
  • Generalization of correct production from one sound to another is expected when remediation targets are selected on the basis of place, manner, and voicing analysis; distinctive feature analysis; or phonological process/pattern analysis (Bernthal & Bankson, 2004).
  • Incorporating auditory bombardment and discrimination increases the clinical effectiveness of a contrastive therapy approach (Crosbie, Holm, & Dodd, 2005).
  • According to the critical age hypothesis, unintelligible speech must be resolved by age 5:6 in order to significantly reduce academic problems associated with speech disorders (Bishop & Adams, 1990).

Easy Does It for Articulation A Phonological Approach incorporates these principles and is also based on expert professional practice.


Bernthal, J.E., & Bankson, N.W. (2004). Articulation and phonological disorders. Boston: Allyn and Bacon.

Bishop, D.V.M., & Adams, C. (1990). A prospective study of the relationship between specific language impairment, phonological disorders, and reading retardation. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 31(7), 1027-1050.

Crosbie, S., Holm, A., & Dodd, B. (2005). Intervention for children with severe speech disorder: A comparison of two approaches. International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders, 40(4), 467-491.

Hodson, B., & Paden, E. (1991). Targeting intelligible speech: A phonological approach to remediation. (2nd ed.). Austin, Texas: Pro-Ed.


Martha Drake


Martha Drake, M.A., CCC-SLP, is a graduate of the University of Iowa.  She works as a speech-language pathologist and program coordinator at Children's Specialty Care (a satellite clinic of The Children's Hospital in Denver) in Pueblo, Colorado.  Martha coordinates the Scottish Rite Foundation funding program.  She is also a certified instructor of the Hanen Parent Program.

Martha has published three other books with LinguiSystems, Take Home Preschool Language Development, Just for Kids Apraxia, and Just for Kids Autism.


Easy Does It for Articulation A Phonological Approach is a two-book set for use with children with severe and profound phonological processing disorders.  It provides therapy materials and home activities to support the speech-language pathologist (SLP) in phonology therapy.  In Targeting Intelligible Speech (Hodson & Paden, 1991) the approach to the remediation of phonological processing disorders is used as a basis for target selection and the progression of targets.

Hodson and Paden stress the importance of teaching phonological processes in a "facilitative phonetic environment."  They report that target sound patterns will be considerably easier to elicit and faster to establish if the phonetic context is carefully selected.  The phonetic contexts should not contain more than one error pattern (e.g., rock has both liquid /r/ and velar /k/), consonants that lead to assimilation of error sounds (e.g., the /t/ at the end of coat will influence the initial /k/ sound), or interfering vowels (e.g., the /u/ in room will impact lip rounding on /r/).

Hodson and Paden also stress the importance of success in therapy; children should experience a high degree of success in therapy to establish an "accurate kinesthetic image of the sound."  The difficulty SLPs have when working with children with severe and profound phonological processing disorders is finding words the children can successfully produce.  This is particularly true in the early cycles of phonology therapy.  So many processes are deviant in the speech of these children that it is extremely difficult to compile an appropriate repertoire of words and pictures to use in therapy and at home for practice.

The advantage of Easy Does It for Articulation A Phonological Approach is in its careful selection of words to use with children who are highly unintelligible.  The phonetic context of the target phonological process does not contain other patterns that are typically deviant in the speech of these children.  In addition, the vocabulary is age-appropriate and the pictures are clear and engaging.  Given the limited number of words available, the vowel context is controlled as much as possible.

Oral-motor activities are included to strengthen speech musculature.  In my experience in working with children who are unintelligible, oral-motor activities play an important part in remediation.  I see a lot of children with oral hypersensitivity, weak tongues, poor lip closure, excessive jaw movements, etc.  A few simple oral-motor activities can strengthen the speech musculature and give the child a much better awareness of appropriate tongue placement.

The purpose of this program is not to teach the SLP all there is to know about remediation of phonological processing disorders.  Easy Does It for Articulation A Phonological Approach provides easy and effective techniques and materials for use in therapy and for sending home with students for additional practice.  It is the SLP's role to assess the child, determine appropriate targets and the progression of targets, develop effective production techniques, and make individual adjustments in the home program.

Because Easy Does It for Articulation A Phonological Approach is very straightforward and avoids technical terms, it can be a useful tool for a speech-language pathology assistant (SLPA).  The SLP would be responsible for assessment, determining appropriate targets, and monitoring the performance of both the SLPA and student.

With the help of parents, I have discharged preschool children who initially were unintelligible in 12-18 months.  I am a strong believer in Hodson and Paden's approach to the remediation of phonological processing disorders.  In the past, these children required therapy for years and years.  An efficient and effective phonology therapy program, however, cannot be done without the help of parents.  Parents will do their part if given the education and tools.  I hope you find Easy Does It for Articulation A Phonological Approach beneficial to your program.