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  • Steps of Communication

    Did you ever catch your friend’s eye from across the room at a crowded event and let her know that you were ready to leave? Briefly tilting your head to the side and a quick glance toward the door can represent an entire sentence.We exchange thoughts and ideas through gestures, facial expressions, body postures, and physical ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on April 29, 2016
  • Politics of Mastery Charts

    Do you have an emotional response to consonant mastery charts for age of acquisition for speech sounds? I do. Just the mere mention of late mastery of sounds makes me bristle. Do you use the Poole study from 1934 or the Templin study from 1957[1] as a means to determine whether or not a child is demonstrating an articulation delay? The ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on April 19, 2016
  • Benefits of Insecurity

    Confidence is widely regarded as an important trait for success, and insecurity is often considered a liability. Recently, a colleague who is transitioning to a new team shared her fears with me about her position change. She will soon be working alongside Occupational Therapists and Physical Therapists to serve children who use Augmentative and ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on April 12, 2016
  • Hearing Two Phonemes

    A child who is substituting /w/ for /r/ makes progress producing /r/. He is now using /r/ in initial position in words. Surprisingly, he is also now substituting /r/ for /w/. He is producing “right” correctly, but now he is no longer saying “white”. My colleague shared this story with me and explained how she needed to provide specific ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on April 5, 2016
  • Evaluating Attention vs. Hearing

    Over the past few years, I have come up with a few techniques to evaluate whether a child who does not respond to their name may be having hearing issues or whether the lack of response could be due to attention. When doing an evaluation, rather than asking the parents whether their child responds to their name, I actually have the parent call ...
    Posted to The Ins and Outs of Early Intervention (Weblog) on March 29, 2016
  • What is Speech Worth?

    Speech sound production and articulation are often treated casually in comparison to their fancy partner, language. The complexity of language and the mysterious relationship between language and cognition tend to overshadow the finely timed coordination of motor movements for speech clarity. Speech, however, isn’t an unimportant subdomain of ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on March 29, 2016
  • Recovering From an Angry Email

    I received an unfriendly email message from a colleague. The message started nicely with kind words, but ended with criticism and complaints. I felt stung. The whole situation was a misunderstanding and I had not even caused the problem. “I’m innocent,” I wanted to proclaim. “It wasn’t my fault. We didn’t even know that there could be a problem.” ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on March 16, 2016
  • Saying the A-Word

    As a young therapist I felt it was my duty my mission to mention autism the second I saw it. Over the years I think I have changed or evolved to another train of thought. Yes, early identification is important. And yes, parents deserve to know if we have concerns as a professional. The problem is, if I am the treating therapist and mention ...
    Posted to The Ins and Outs of Early Intervention (Weblog) on March 1, 2016
  • Sounds, Syllables and Stress

    Spelling is misleading. The orthographic system does not reflect all aspects of pronunciation. Word stress, syllable breaks, articulatory placement, and co-articulatory processes affect speech production. In General American English, 80% of words in conversation have stress on the initial syllable. Stressed syllables are typically produced more ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on February 22, 2016
  • Conflict Resolution

    In case you haven't noticed, I've been lagging behind in the blog, lately. Most of this has to do with personal issues - with my mother's ongoing battle with cancer, and my grandmother's failing health, I haven't had very much in the way of ''free time'' to focus on writing. As such, I still have a lot of stories to tell - about past holidays and ...
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