Modeling AAC

During the 2019-2020 school year, my first year as a Speech-Language Pathologist, I spent a lot of time modeling language on AAC (augmentative-alternative communication). “Modeling means you point to words on the AAC tool as you speak,” according to https://www.assistiveware.com/learn-aac/start-modeling, which has a lot of great tips on modeling AAC.

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Summertime Sensory Activities

Summer is a time for children to play and explore. Summertime play is also a great opportunity to incorporate sensory-based activities and introduce new sensory experiences. Most pediatric Occupational Therapists feel strongly about the benefits of providing kiddos with sensory input throughout their day and can vouch for the positive effects on a child’s overall self-regulation. Though the opportunities for sensory play are endless, described below are some fun and easy ideas that might come in useful over the Summer months.

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Getting Ready for Back to School as a Speech Therapist

The beginning of the school year can be a daunting time as a school speech therapist. From making a brand new therapy schedule to getting back into the routine of a full school day, it can be stressful. Here are some handy tips and tricks to tackle the beginning of the school year like a pro!

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Multilingual and Multicultural Therapy

“I speak Spanish to God, Italian to women, French to men, and German to my horse.”  This quote is commonly attributed to the former Holy Roman Emperor, Charles V, who ruled over most of Europe.  He shows that if communication is not tailored to specific audiences, then the message will likely be poorly understood, if at all.

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Overview of Handwriting Programs

Which way is write?

As an Occupational Therapist for over twenty years, I have encountered numerous handwriting programs for children.  In fact, sometimes it is downright overwhelming to determine which one is the best for a student!

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Reviewing Last Year, Preparing for Next

If you are reading this your school year is either over or almost over. If it’s over, the first thing you should do is exhale.  Whew! If it’s not over yet, hang in there; you are almost at the finish line. Either way, you should be proud of yourself.

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Reflections of a Clinical Fellowship Year

Congratulations! You’ve finished your graduate program and you’re ready to be a clinical fellow, speech-language pathologist! You apply to several positions that interest you, and soon enough, you have accepted your first job in a profession that you’ve worked so hard to be a part of!

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What I Learned Doing Teletherapy

Like so many of us privileged enough to soldier on during school closures, I got to embark on a new adventure amidst all the chaos by trying my hand at teletherapy for the first time. 

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Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion

As a nation, we are navigating turbulent times. We watched in horror the unjust killing of George Floyd,  Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and so many others and recognize that the pain felt across our communities is a result of a much longer history of racism in our country. We have been inspired by our colleagues, family, and friends making their voices heard for a profound need of inclusiveness in our society.

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AAC Teaching Principles

AAC (Alternative and Augmentative Communication) devices are becoming more and more prevalent in the lives of students with complex communication needs. Students who in the past would have had no way to communicate now have a device full of words that they can use to express themselves. The problem is that too often students are given these devices and not taught how to use them, leading to them getting left in backpacks, in desks and at home.  

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