Prosody refers to the stress one places on words and the intonation. It includes how fast someone talks, how loud he is, how he pronounces words, and how rhythmic his speech is.
Prosody problems include:
• Loud talking
• Overly precise pronunciation
• Unusual rhythm when talking
• Lack of inflection
• Absence of emotion in voice
• Monotonous sound
• Stilted or halted speech
• Difficulty coordinating breathing while talking
Children and teens with Asperger’s Disorder generally have multiple problems with prosody. The manner in which they speak is unusual. They lack a smooth flow and rhythm to their speech. Some speak in a robotic-like manner with no emphasis on any words. Their pace does not vary and they show little emotion in their words. Some have halted or stilted speech, almost as if their words are being interrupted by their breathing. They can be monotone and dull to listen to. Their pronunciation can be exaggerated, where they slowly pronounce each syllable.
While pragmatics and semantics are specialties that often require the help of a speech therapist, problems with prosody most certainly do. Speech therapy will teach your child techniques that require the skill of a speech and language expert.