Straw drinking promotes tongue retraction into the mouth while drinking. In order to suction liquids or shakes from the cup, you must pull your tongue into your mouth, which, by the way, is the area where your tongue needs to touch in order to produce many speech sounds including (t, d, k, g.) You can also mix things up a little by varying the intensity of the straw. Shorter straws and thin liquids are a great starting point for young children just getting used to this magical tool, while longer or twisty, silly straws in thicker liquids require more work. The latter version challenges older children to improve oral motor awareness. In other words, drinking cold, thick beverages with the straw pictured above may help your child feel where their lips and tongue are in the mouth, thus improving awareness for sound placements. I have seen tremendous success with children improving their tongue posture in response to speech therapy in conjunction with making simple changes like using a straw instead of a Sippy cup.
Nanette Cote, Pediatric Speech-Language Therapist