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LATEST POSTS FROM EACH BLOG
October 1, 2014 12:41 PM by Kimberly Jasensky of Speech Therapy: The ABCs of AAC

Working with those who use Speech Generating Devices is very rewarding. You get to see the excitement and impact of communication. Yesterday, I saw Karma for the first time in two weeks, because she had been sick. We currently are playing the waiting game with her insurance company, so when she is not in therapy, she does not have a communication device.

On occasion, I am fortunate enough to find extra old equipment ...


 

Last week I attended a review meeting for a little girl I work with weekly. After the meeting, her mom shared that she had purchased the "Laugh & Learn Apptivity Creation Center" by Fisher Price for her daughter to help her to use the iPad safely and asked that I incorporate it into my next session. Today when I saw her, I did just that and was pleasantly surprised by how well it worked and the numerous options ...


 
September 26, 2014 1:15 PM by Kimberly Jasensky of Speech Therapy: The ABCs of AAC

Shawn lives in a group home and recently received his communication device. He is very excited about the prospect of communicating. Shawn was diagnosed with Autism and has not really had the opportunity to effectively communicate. He went through a trial period in therapy and has demonstrated that he is capable of using a communication device; however, he has one area he needs to work on: visually attending to his device ...

 

Happy Autumn!

Now that summer is over and school is back in session, we have the opportunity to once again design creative and effective therapy lessons for our speech and language students. Here are some colorful and fun book ideas to support an early childhood curriculum that can easily be used to enhance language development both in the classroom and in your home. Take your students out for an autumn walk after ...


 
September 24, 2014 7:00 AM by Valerie Lill of Speech in the Schools

One thing school-based SLPs know, is that there is a lot of paperwork and "extras" that everyone takes for granted that we do as part of our job. These can range from writing Evaluation Reports and IEPs, medical access billing, to contacting parents on the phone or via email, consulting with teachers, planning therapy activities making communication boards, programming devices, writing social stories, doing research ...

2 comments  

Most children have the capacity to learn more than one language, even if they have language delays. It should be noted that language delays do not discriminate. If there is a problem in one language, chances are you will find it in the other language as well. However, there are many beliefs about bilingualism and language delayed children, including that it can cause confusion or hinder language acquisition. Learning ...

 

My daughter came home this week with the letter I have been dreading: "All Lunches and Snacks MUST be peanut-free." As a therapist working in a preschool that is also peanut-free and as a mom, I understand completely the importance and need for this rule. If my child was the one with the severe peanut allergy I would be relieved to know that the school and parents support the policy and are protecting my child.

BUT, ...


 
September 22, 2014 11:23 AM by Ashley Brannon of Speaking of Apps

When evaluating adults with voice disorders in the past, it may have been difficult to show baseline parameters and progress without having expensive equipment. If you are a clinician who does not have access to VisiPitch Software or works outside of a clinic, use of voice apps may be the key to providing the necessary data needed for a basic voice evaluation or to further determine whether an ENT referral is needed. ...

 

My last two posts addressed the challenge of implementing items that families have in their home to support therapy and IFSP goals and strategies. In my posts I specifically addressed populations that may not have access to many books and toys for their children.  As a therapist working with very young children, it can be difficult when supplies are limited. Creativity and resourcefulness for the therapist and ...

 
September 18, 2014 11:01 AM by Kimberly Jasensky of Speech Therapy: The ABCs of AAC

Using a communication device out in the community can be a very exciting and motivating activity. As many students, especially older students are being transitioned into vocational training environments, it is vital for them to be comfortable communicating effectively. Communicating in the community is also a way to show new users how effective voice communication can be. There is nothing more motivating than being able ...

 
September 18, 2014 9:29 AM by Speech Merion of Speech and Hearing Perspectives

By Jasna Cowan, MS, CCC-SLP, a bilingual speech-language pathologist on a multidisciplinary team at Golden Gate Regional Center, San Mateo, Calif. 

Dear Pediatrician,
Why? Why are the child and parent sitting in my office in front of me seeking my opinion? They are concerned with their child's speech and language skills. The parents are now officially worried because Kindergarten ...


 

Last week I wrote a post about the task of only using items found in the various homes where you are doing therapy. This is the expectation we work under in the county where I practice speech therapy. When you work in impoverished areas, this can definitely be a challenge. Many children have very little access to toys and various resources. Families are often struggling just to put food on the table and pay their bills; ...

3 comments  
September 15, 2014 3:21 PM by Lynn LaValley of Speaking of Apps

Super Duper Publications has turned a popular software program into an iPad app!  Webber HearBuilder Following Directions provides a fun way to improve auditory skills, as well as following directions skills.  The free version provides practice with basic directions, sequential directions, quantitative and spatial directions, temporal directions, and conditional directions.  Each type of direction is offered ...

 

If you are a therapist working in homecare, then you know the challenges of trying to use what the family has in their home during therapy sessions. In our county, therapists are encouraged to only use items that the family possesses in our therapy sessions. Years ago when I first began working in homecare this was not the case. In those days we were able to bring in various tools and toys, whatever we felt would be ...

1 comments  
September 11, 2014 12:33 PM by Kimberly Jasensky of Speech Therapy: The ABCs of AAC

The school year is here and time for each and every student to be prepared to participate. This includes those who use communication devices. Often teachers, if they have not been exposed, are overwhelmed when it comes to using a communication device. This is when we need a great advocate, so that students can use communication to fully participate in their education.

Who are the best advocates? It really ...


 

When providing services for a bilingual or multilingual child, the therapist should have native or near native language proficiency. In addition, the therapist should have knowledge and skills about second language acquisition, language development for the particular language, etc. ASHA's "Knowledge and Skills Needed by Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists to Provide Culturally and Linguistically Appropriate ...

 
September 10, 2014 8:00 AM by Ashley Brannon of Speaking of Apps

CogniFit Brain Fitness for iPhone and iPad is an app designed to target a variety of memory, attention and problem solving skills through the use of mini games within the app. These skills are especially important for an individual with higher-level cognitive deficits. It is intended for individuals over the age of 13 years.

Being a free app, one might think that it doesn't have a lot to offer. You would be wrong. ...


 

Now that the school year has begun, so have our IEP meetings. From time to time we receive Evaluation Reports on new students entering our preschool program. The reports are hot off the press and our job is to read them and design goals that are appropriate for that particular child. There are times when this is not an easy task, as information is often limited and we have not personally met or evaluated the child ...


 
September 5, 2014 12:24 PM by Lynn LaValley of Speaking of Apps

If you are like me, in the past you've been frustrated trying to teach action words using still pictures.  Well, now there's an answer... Actions in Video.  This app was designed by Geraldine Moran, a fellow speech-language pathologist,  to work on acquiring action words, and using them to create sentences.  The free version allows you to explore the app prior to purchase, and although the full version ...

 

It can be a challenge to find a fun, interesting word game that is targeted to adults and also does not take up more time than is allotted for therapy. In my house, a good game of Scrabble can last all evening, and in most of our therapy sessions we have to address a number of therapy goals in under an hour. That is why I particularly love games that can end within a therapy session, or games that can be left with the ...

 

There are numerous research studies that give evidence that children often LOSE skills over the 2 to 3 summer months when they are not attending school. According to the RIF (Reading is Fundamental) website the "summer slide ... is what happens when young minds sit idle for three months." The site reports that the National Summer Learning Association has found that "a conservative estimate of lost instructional ...

 
September 3, 2014 11:18 AM by Kimberly Jasensky of Speech Therapy: The ABCs of AAC

Most disorders or diseases that affect communication are not homogenous. There are so many levels of communication that can be achieved, and with each user you have to be able to evaluate his or her need so that you can help determine what success looks like.

Recently, I have been in touch with some caregivers of past patients to see where they are in their communication journey. Unfortunately some of these have ...


2 comments  

I thought it would be interesting to explore the history of autism. What is today known as Autistic Spectrum Disorder has evolved through time and drawn so much attention because of the rising prevalence, especially across the United States.

Swiss psychiatrist Eugen Bleuler first used the term "autism" in 1908. He used it to describe a schizophrenic patient "who had withdrawn into his own world." In the 1940s, there ...


 

Has school started yet where you are? Are you READY for a brand-new school year?

Now that I am working in both homecare and preschool I had very little vacation time this summer. Our homecare program runs 51 weeks a year, so even when preschool is on a break, I continue to see my homecare caseload. Now that September has arrived and the school year has officially begun, I look back at summer and it seems ...


 

Fiberoptic endoscopic evaluation of swallow, or FEES, is a good alternative to the modified barium swallow study, or MBSS, in the long-term care setting for many reasons. In the past year, the rehabilitation company I work for has contracted with another company to provide FEES at our facility. Their speech-language pathologist arrives with her own equipment and food, and I am a part of the entire evaluation.

The ...


 

ABOUT OUR BLOGS

Stephanie Bruno Dowling, M.S. CCC-SLP, discusses her experiences in early intervention and offers tips to clinicians and families.

A blog by and for school-based speech-language pathologists.

Focus on Geriatric and Adult Services highlights the rewards and challenges of working with geriatric and adult populations with communication, cognitive and/or swallowing disorders.

Tips, tricks, reviews, and ideas for using touch screen apps and technology to enhance therapy, work, and the lives of your clients. 

Josh Gilbert is entering his third year as a Doctor of Audiology student at The University of Florida. He is a graduate of Baylor University in Texas, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and a minor in World Affairs.

Darlida is a school based and early intervention therapist and evaluator who works with culturally and linguistically diverse infants and middle school students.

Guest bloggers working anywhere within the speech and hearing field share their therapy experiences, new research, lessons learned, useful tools and more.

This blog is about using a common sense, evidence-based approach to evaluating, treating and implementing Augmentative and Alternative Communication.