Abstract

The phonological awareness skills of 7- to 8-year-old children with intellectual disability (ID) were compared to those of 4- to 5-year-old typically developing children who were matched for early reading skills, vocabulary, and gender. Globally, children with ID displayed a marked weakness in phonological awareness. Syllable blending, syllable segmentation, and first phoneme detection appeared to be preserved. In contrast, children with ID showed a marked weakness in rhyme detection and a slight weakness in phoneme blending. Two school years later, these deficits no longer remained. Marked weaknesses appeared in phoneme segmentation and first/last phoneme detection. The findings suggest that children with ID display an atypical pattern in phonological awareness that changes with age. The implications for practice and research are discussed.

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