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Monotone voices/stammers/intonation

Intonation is an odd word. I liken it to a voice dance or a piece of music. An interesting voice, one that dances from sentence to sentence and plays tunes is what I love to listen to.

Monotone jellybean voices are quite common, the ones that draaaaag on with no break in exactly the same way no full stops no punctuation no explanation marks or anything in fact really really boring can you feel my fingers making slow steady boring moves on the keyboard do you know what i mean not even a capital letter to break the monotony. Sometimes the ploddy ploddy voices put you to sleep.

Indeedthewordsjustrunstraightintooneanotherwithoutabreak phew!One of my children, one who has Asperger's Syndrome, has this type of monotonous relentless intonation, and we're working hard to improve it by doing singing exercises, and speaking soft and loud, excited and informative, sad and happy.

Combine that odd intonation with poor fragmented information and you may as well close your ears. Even when my jellybean son gets excited, it's a job to detect it. Eeyore comes to mind. I remember that awful day 9/11, I told someone what had happened, an adult jellybean I hasten to add, their reply was a serious monotone, ‘ Does that mean Wall St has had to stop trading? ‘, no feeling or emotion in the voice at all.

On the other end of the scale, remember we always do extremes is SQUEALING. Apart from the monotone ones, I have yet to meet a jellybean who doesn’t squeal. Remember the happy flappy greeting of the jellybean? Well welcome to the thrills and shrills of the jellybean.

A squeal or a shriek need not be a warning of impending doom, it can be excitable as well and if accompanied by happy flappies then you can be sure you are on to a winner.

Grunts, chatting away to yourself and odd pronunciations go hand in hand as well. There are some jellybeans who put too many involuntary sounds like sniffing, tongue-clicking and childhood noises like psssshhht and mmmmm into their sentences when they speak. Some who repeat one word obsessively and at the wrong time may have Tourette’s Syndrome.

Stammers are common in jellybeans, more often than not these can be corrected with speech therapy. I know I am always going on about ADHD, but for those of us with that added bonus, I believe our brains are going far too fast for our mouths to keep up with. Its not a race at all, so why do we insist on trying? Stammers are tongue trippers, and we need to practice lots of tongue twisters so that we can clear the trip from our tongue. Try ‘red lorry, yellow lorry’, ‘round the rugged rocks the ragged rascal ran’ and ‘she sells sea shells on the sea shore’.

Again encourage your jellybean to read slowly aloud. Praise them as its not easy especially when you have an impairment. So tell them - CALM (yourself), CLEAR (your mind of its buzziness) and then COMMUNICATE. CCC. I tell this to my children all the time.