Delayed Echolalia as a strategy…

Delayed Echolalia as a strategy…

We were learning how to implement DIR/Floortime strategies with a youngster who has autism. We were green therapists, and didn’t know much. Our supervisor, Sima Gerber, was coaching us through play with the child. Who would think you would need to be coached to play, but we did… Following the child’s lead, we began to discover how much echolalia drove this child’s language. We were led to the work of Barry Prizant, who with a number of collaborators, had worked…

Read More Read More

4 ways to spark your child’s success in life…

4 ways to spark your child’s success in life…

Our habits become unconscious over time. What we do habitually becomes the foundation for our days. Those days stack up after awhile and become our months and those months roll into one big year. Whether we use the time in that year wisely is up to us more than we might be consciously aware. Whether our habits are leading us to less stress and more success is entirely up to us. Consider our children in the light of habits. What…

Read More Read More

Don’t say “use your words,” do this instead.

Don’t say “use your words,” do this instead.

“Use your words.” To me, the most ineffective teaching method is telling a child to “use their words.” I am not innocent- I have used that prompt in the past.  There are a number of reasons I feel we should be cueing our students in different ways.  Students with Autism, emotional challenges, and developmental disabilities often hear these words. For students with Autism, I see “use your words” as a problem because we are assuming something; that the student has…

Read More Read More

More ways to grow language using songs (or how I learned to follow the child’s lead)

More ways to grow language using songs (or how I learned to follow the child’s lead)

It’s been 2 days in a row now.  For some therapists, brains would be racked, consultants would be consulted, Facebook groups would be contacted, but I remembered the teachings of my graduate school and one special professor, Dr. Sima Gerber.  I knew to follow the child’s lead. My Kindergarten student started using “The Wheels on the Bus” as a framework for labeling verbs and nouns. Imagine it:   Swimming becomes “swimming, swimming, swimming…” over and over until we get to…

Read More Read More

One way to make artic therapy a little more fun!

One way to make artic therapy a little more fun!

Kids love games, right? Everytime they come into the speech therapy room, you hear “What game can we play today?” Your peers might frown a little and the explanations flow, but we all know that a game keeps kids engaged while we work on goals.  This article by Char Boshart goes more into depth and is worth the read! I don’t know about you, but playing Memory and Don’t Break the Ice can be trying sometimes. Monopoly is out of…

Read More Read More

Another way to look at comprehension…

Another way to look at comprehension…

As educators, it is best practice to check in with all of our students for understanding of new and challenging concepts. While there are a number of ways to do this verbally, we can use visual supports to augment what we are doing on a daily basis. Visual supports can help some of our students who are: shy or reticent; they might not want to share out with the class or small group struggling learners who are unsure of their…

Read More Read More

3 keys to improving attention for students

3 keys to improving attention for students

“I’m too poor to pay attention.” I would love to say I can take credit for that statement because it sums up some of my experience working in schools. Our students are experiencing more and more difficulty with attention in classrooms. As any good educator, I want to know.. “why?” Is it environment? have we inundated our students with too much technology? have we put on the TV too early in life and not cultivated play? have we put too…

Read More Read More

Change your words, change your life…

Change your words, change your life…

  Our language shapes our world. Our language colors how we think, what we do, and how we interact with others. The words we use can limit us or keep us on the right track. The words that others use can keep us moving towards our goals, or stop us dead in our tracks. Thinkers such as Steven Pinker, Angela Duckworth, Carol Dweck, and Marshall Goldsmith talk about the power of language. Whether it is using a growth mindset, using…

Read More Read More

One fun way to learn about the scientific method…

One fun way to learn about the scientific method…

The value of scientific literacy is incredibly important in this day and age. Various people, including Neil DeGrasse Tyson talk about the need for our children to be able to understand the scientific process. Beyond that, the trial and error that is inherent in scientific exploration teaches children patience and resilience. There is overwhelming information out there about the need for our children to be willing to persevere as they work towards a goal. Look at Carol Dweck’s work on Growth…

Read More Read More

3 foolproof methods for making social stories…

3 foolproof methods for making social stories…

What happens if you’re the new guy, and you don’t know what to do? Social stories can be a helpful way to clarify social situations and interactions for children. While often targeted for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), there are other types of children that can be helped by these stories. Children with challenges in social language, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, and cognitive challenges can be supported by these stories. While I say “the new guy” tongue in cheek, it…

Read More Read More