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  • Articulation Therapy: Inner Voice Recordings

    I've had orthodontia for most of my life and still wear a retainer at night. When I was in grade school, I had a palate expander to change the shape of my mouth. A strong wire was connected to the back molars that exerted pressure on the hard palate. This was some time ago, when only an orthodontist could adjust a palate expander. I had periodic ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on January 12, 2017
  • Observing the Complexity of Fun

    We know that we make positive changes in the lives of our clients, but our work can also make a meaningful difference to the next generation of speech-language pathologists. Many years ago, when I was learning to be a clinician, I observed Dr. Bob, a speech-language pathologist in private practice. Dr. Bob specialized in working with children ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on September 6, 2016
  • Starting in a New School

    Are you new to a school building this year? There are, of course, the obvious tasks:•    Make friends with the secretaries and custodial staff•    Connect with administration and share how happy you are to be at the school•    Complete a monthly calendar for annual IEP and re-evaluation due ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on August 29, 2016
  • Find the Smile

    Everyone enjoys something. It might take us a while to find out just what will make another person smile, but if we watch closely, we can find it.Some years ago I was working with a student who had significant cognitive delays and behavioral challenges. He attended his neighborhood elementary school, however, the staff was not sufficiently ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on August 1, 2016
  • What Did You Learn This Year?

    Every school year we learn new things. I recently took a few minutes to ask each student the question, “What have you learned about your talking and your speaking this year?”Here are a few of the different responses:•    “I learned that I can do good R’s fairly consistently.”•    “I learned a different kind of R and ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on June 9, 2016
  • Articulation: Social Belonging and Safety

    How do you decide if a child needs articulation therapy? My colleague and I discussed different factors.Does it sound like the child has an accent?A mother shared with me that everyone thinks they’re from another part of the country.Their son’s articulation disorder sounds like an accent. Whenever they meet people who have met their son first, ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on May 17, 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
  • 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
  • We Do Care

    A few years ago, I attended a restorative listening community event, which brought together parents/caregivers, general education teachers, special education service providers, and administrators. I wasn’t sure what to expect as I entered a large hall filled with round tables. Seating was organized so that each table contained members of the ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on February 29, 2016
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