Child & Family Development Child & Family Development

May 10, 2024

5 Signs: Language Processing

5 Signs that Your Child May be a Gestalt Language Processor

By: Ashley Kehoe, CCC-SLP

There are 2 different ways children learn and process language. The first, and most common, is known as Analytical Language Processing. This is the form of language development that begins with single words and then builds into more complex phrases and sentences. The second is known as Gestalt Language Processing. This is the form of language development where children begin with multi-word “chunks” of language and learn how to break them apart and put them together in different ways. These are 5 signs your child may be a Gestalt Language Processor:

  1. They use chunks of language from the start (i.e., be careful it’s hot) rather than initially using single words (i.e., cup).
  2. They use phrases that are unintelligible, but have exaggerated or consistent intonation patterns.
  3. They use phrases from preferred TV shows or movies.
  4. When they use phrases, the context may not always be obvious or make sense to you.
  5. The phrases they use are often associated with big emotions, like feeling excited or scared.