The Development of Symbolic Play and Language in Toddlers With Cleft Palate This study compared the longitudinal performance of two groups of toddlers with palatal clefts and an age-matched group of children without palatal clefts on measures of elicited symbolic play at 18, 24, and 30 months. The results indicated that the group with isolated cleft palate differed significantly from both the ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2004
The Development of Symbolic Play and Language in Toddlers With Cleft Palate
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Lynn E. Snyder, PhD
    University of Colorado at Boulder
  • Nancy Scherer
    East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, TN
  • Contact author: Lynn E. Snyder, PhD, Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, University of Colorado at Boulder, Campus Box 409, Boulder, CO 80309-0409.
    Contact author: Lynn E. Snyder, PhD, Department of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, University of Colorado at Boulder, Campus Box 409, Boulder, CO 80309-0409.×
  • Corresponding author: E-mail: lynn.snyder@colorado.edu
Article Information
Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 2004
The Development of Symbolic Play and Language in Toddlers With Cleft Palate
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, February 2004, Vol. 13, 66-80. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2004/008)
History: Received May 12, 2003 , Accepted October 13, 2003
 
American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, February 2004, Vol. 13, 66-80. doi:10.1044/1058-0360(2004/008)
History: Received May 12, 2003; Accepted October 13, 2003

This study compared the longitudinal performance of two groups of toddlers with palatal clefts and an age-matched group of children without palatal clefts on measures of elicited symbolic play at 18, 24, and 30 months. The results indicated that the group with isolated cleft palate differed significantly from both the cleft lip and palate group and the noncleft group on all but 1 play measure. Correlational analyses for each group indicated significant positive correlations between a number of the play variables at 18 months and productive vocabulary and MLU at 24 and 30 months of age. The findings suggest that assessment of early play gestures may assist clinicians in identifying children with clefts who are at risk for later language impairment.

Acknowledgments
This study was supported by National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders Award DC02301-01A1. We thank Linda D’Antonio for asking the question that started it all so many years ago in Southern California, and Beth Iams, Pam Abner, Angela Dotson, and Laura Miller for assistance in data collection. We are especially grateful to all the children and their parents who participated in this research.
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