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  • 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
  • Naturalistic Repetition

    Clinicians typically rely heavily on the phrases “say it again” and the mind-numbing “one more time” in articulation therapy. Intervention for speech sound disorders generally includes repeated trials of target words to facilitate auditory discrimination of correct/incorrect productions, self-monitoring of accuracy, and the formation of a new ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on January 31, 2016
  • Calendars Make Time Visible

    “What day is it today?” I ask students this question at the beginning of every session. It started as strategy of modeling self-talk, showing students my thought processes as I recorded the session data in the data log. Thinking aloud highlights internal steps of planning and information seeking. With busy schedules, often across multiple sites, ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on December 18, 2015
  • Looking at Language Samples

    A colleague asked about ways to analyze a language sample:Consider cultural and linguistic factors: dialect/language differences, linguistic community, etc.Highlight conjunctions: compare compound and complex sentences•    Coordinating conjunctions: and, but, or, etc.•    Subordinating conjunctions: before/after, ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on December 7, 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
  • Belonging in Competition

    Competition may be inherently divisive and alienating, as people are sorted into predetermined roles based on “winning” and “losing”. People handle competition in different ways, and some types of responses are more successful than others. Ideally, we gradually learn to manage our frustration when we don’t win a game. Recently, I was touched by ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on August 27, 2015
  • Demographic Meanings

    “My caseload is really diverse. About 25% of the students are African-American, 25% are Hispanic, 25% are Asian, and the rest are American.”One of my colleagues offered this description of her caseload at a social event attended by other clinicians and university faculty. Did you notice anything interesting about the above statement? Perhaps you ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on July 16, 2015
  • First Class Clinicians

    Last week I met a skilled clinician who had recently relocated, transitioning from running a private practice in an urban environment to working in a rural school district. After our conversation, she shared the following sentiment: “I was encouraged by your own strong feelings that school-based clinicians aren't second class therapists and ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on July 3, 2015
  • The Study of Strengths

    As speech language pathologists, we are highly trained at observing and listening. We recognize and identify client productions that deviate from normative targets. We listen for errors and sort errors by type, degree, and frequency to plan remediation. Our testing methods enable us to pinpoint specific areas of difficulty and design intervention ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on May 29, 2015
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