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  • Graduate School Applications

    Do you know anyone applying to graduate school? Here are some tips to share:Writer’s block: Fight the freeze by starting in the middle of the essay. Sometimes we discover introductions through conclusions. Return to the opening lines only after you’ve reached the end.Answer simple questions: Unsure what to say? Start with everyday, plain language. ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on November 16, 2015
  • Dear Future Leader

    Last week you told me about a recent leadership meeting: participants, proposed initiatives, attempted negotiations, and post-meeting allegiances. I didn’t hear what you needed, but I should have. I tried to dissuade you from higher-level politics. I don’t know if I felt jaded, or if I was trying to protect you. I care about you a lot. I don’t ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on November 6, 2015
  • Blending Clusters

    Clients working on cluster blends, /pl/, /bl/, /fl/, /kl/, /gl/, and /sl/, may initially demonstrate vowel epenthesis, inserting a schwa between two consonants, e.g., “puh-lay” for “play”, and altering the syllable shape from CCV to CVCV. We can directly teach how to blend consonants to produce near simultaneous release of sound – and lose the ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on October 30, 2015
  • In Defense of Blinders

    “If you’re not outraged, you’re not paying attention” is a familiar political quote, expressing a form of social commentary. Those of us who work within organizations have reasons to be outraged. We are beholden to processes and procedures designed by others. We live within complex structures with layers of bureaucracy and pre-established rules ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on October 16, 2015
  • Letter to a Friend

    Dear Friend,Thank you for trusting me and telling me about everything. I didn’t realize how difficult this fall has been for you. The problems you described are painfully familiar:•    Fundamental imbalances in the amount of tasks required within the time period allotted•    Insurmountable paperwork and documentation, ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on October 9, 2015
  • Search That Fact

    Imagine a contemporary trivia game show with teenage contestants pitted against each other to see who can find information the quickest. The host asks a series of factual questions across content areas (history, literature, science, music, etc.). Contestants type key words on their cell phones, which appear on large monitors placed above their ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on September 14, 2015
  • Beginning With Goodbye

    There’s always a small thread of sadness mixed in with the happiness when a client completes therapy.Our relationships with students are temporary. Sometimes they last a few years, and sometimes they last a few months or less. Yesterday, a student who has been making excellent progress on her articulation asked me, “What happens when I’m finished ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on August 21, 2015
  • Winning the Job Lottery

    “What would you do if you won a million dollars?”A few years ago I was working with an entertaining group of fifth grade students who were practicing producing their speech sounds at the sentence and conversational level. We were taking turns answering social questions from a deck of cards. We turned over the card with the question, “What would ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on August 14, 2015
  • When Being Quiet Isn’t Listening

    Some years ago, a student showed me how ‘sitting quietly’ doesn’t necessarily equate to ‘listening’. His teacher was concerned about his behavior during reading and his auditory comprehension skills. He was a friendly and gregarious student who was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and mild language/learning ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on August 7, 2015
  • Categorical Negation

    Which of the following is not an easy way to ask a question?a)    Inclusivityb)    Exclusivityc)    Negationd)    Both (b) and (c)My colleague and I worked with a friendly, middle school student, who had language-learning challenges. In the classroom, the students read classic and ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on July 24, 2015
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