For the great majority of children, the problem of teaching speech never arises. Speech develops within each child's particular environment without parents and teachers having to know a great deal about how it occurs. The literature on childhood schizophrenia suggests two conclusions regarding speech in such children: first, that the usual treatment setting in which these children are placed might not be conducive to speech development; and second, that a child failing to develop speech by the age of 5 years remains withdrawn and does not improve clinically. The failure of some children to develop speech as a "natural" consequence of growing up poses the need for an increased knowledge of how language is acquired. The first two children exposed to this program are discussed. Chuck and Billy were six-year-old in-patients at the Neuropsychiatric Institute at UCLA. These children were selected for the program because they did not speak.