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  • 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
  • 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
  • On Butterflies and Families

    In the early days of my career, I was at an IEP meeting waiting to present goals for a kindergarten student with multiple needs. He was an enthusiastic young boy with mild coordination difficulties, who frequently bumped into furniture and other children. He had language and learning delays, and slightly imprecise articulation. His grandmother was ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on February 16, 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
  • 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
  • Advice on Giving Advice

    When the right advice is given at the appropriate time, it improves lives. When off-hand, unsolicited advice is given, it may be a source of frustration. The concept of advice is to guide another person in making a decision or completing an action. As Speech Language Pathologists, we are often expected to provide advice and demonstrate expertise. ...
    Posted to Speech in the Schools (Weblog) on October 2, 2015
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