Looking for some AAC materials to round out your collection of resources? Teachers Pay Teachers, the online marketplace for materials made by teachers and therapists, has quite a few. Here are a couple of freebies to check out. AAC Myths by Susan Berkowitz Preverbal Communication-AAC Checklists by Ricki Block of Preschool Speechie Plus AAC Home Information Questionnaire by Tarra Bailey AAC Brochure for Teachers and Support Staff by Sublime Speech Leveled Core Communication Boards by Sister SLPs What are your favorite AAC resources on Teachers Pay Teachers? We’d love to hear about them.
“But I don’t have just one student who needs AAC in my class – I have a bunch! How can I work AAC teaching into an already hectic day?” Teachers Amy Devin and Lauren Pawlowski are back with real-world suggestions for situations like these. Last year, they introduced us to Big Core, gave us tips for implementing it in the classroom, and explained how they integrate it into shared reading lessons and predictable chart writing activities. Today, they’re back with prAACtical information on how they provide explicit instruction on core vocabulary words. Amy and Lauren are public school teachers in Michigan who began teaching in resource rooms and moved to self‐contained ASD elementary classrooms in 2009. There was not much talk about core language when they started teaching and even less about incorporating into classroom lessons. AAC devices have changed a bit over the years, too. Initially, they worked with a 32-location core board on... [Read More...]
Do the AAC users in your life use only a fraction of the core words in their SGD, AAC app, or communication board? One way to help them move forward is to make a concerted effort to use, highlight, and provide additional teaching on a variety of words. It’s hard to do this without getting overwhelmed, so find a strategy that works for you. A few years ago, we decided to approach this by focusing on 12-16 core words each month. (If this is too much for the teams with whom you work, that’s not a problem. Just cut it back to 4-6 words/month.) Each month, we can highlight those words in our conversation (aided language input), direct intervention, and home programming activities with AAC learners. The repeated experiences with those 12-16 (or 4-6) words helps our AAC learners develop new skills, and keeps the team focused on the same destination. It’s... [Read More...]
Happy Sunday, prAACtical friends! Hope you are having a restorative weekend and are looking forward to a fulfilling week ahead. Here are some posts that you may have missed in your busy week. Monday: PrAACtical Resources: Data Collection Forms for Communication Partners Wednesday: Video of the Week – Voice by Choice Thursday: Free Resources for Making AAC and Visual Supports
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For comprehensive AAC systems, there is no doubt that we need access to tools with the communication symbols that match our client’s needs. There are times, though, when ‘free’ and ‘simple’ fits the bill. Whether you are a graduate student clinicians/teacher, parent, or professional, these tools may come in handy. Picto4Me: This executable program works with Google Chrome and allows you to create communication boards and other visual supports at no cost. You can view and use the boards online via computer or mobile device or print them. This program offers voice output and scanning, too. ARASAAC: We’ve written about the wonderful resources at the Aragonese Portal of AAC in previous posts. Keep them in mind as you are searching for symbols or creating AAC supports. Trial versions: Some companies offer a free trial of their symbol software or programs so that consumers can try before they buy. We love... [Read More...]
Last week, we posted about taking data on communication partners, something that can be very helpful when we are looking for ways to expedite the AAC user’s progress. Based on feedback from that post, we’re sharing a sample data collection form for this purpose. Do you have another idea for collecting data on the behavior of communication partners? We’d love to hear about it.
Hope you had a sweet week of AAC love! Here are some posts you may have missed. Monday: PrAACtical Resources: Downloadable AAC Posters Tuesday: Happy Valentine’s Day! Wednesday: Video of the Week: Using Structure to Support Participation Thursday: Data Collection for the Beginning AAC User: Essential Things to Measure to Expedite Progress
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It’s exciting to see more and more teams on the road to implementing AAC in therapy and in the classroom. Often, though, our initial expectations for student progress don’t pan out. Consider these examples. Aleksander’s SGD has robust vocabulary that is customized specifically for him. He uses it consistently at snack and lunch time, but rarely uses it in other activities. Ariel uses her AAC app to ask for things, make comments, and answer questions but rarely goes beyond the single word level to express herself. Jayson had a PECS book for over a year and learned to request his favorite foods but not much else. His team switched Jayson over to a more robust AAC system, and while he learned to communicate for other reasons, he still doesn’t use his communication book very frequently unless he’s prompted to do so. Do these situations seem vaguely familiar? Helping AAC learners become... [Read More...]
Show some AAC love this week! Photo credit: Roman Drits
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Looking for some additional AAC-related resources? CALL Scotland has some wonderful resources that can be displayed as posters, and/or used as handouts for meetings/trainings (click here). Here’s a sampling of what you’ll find. And don’t miss this interactive flyer that takes you to PowerPoint books. ‘Thanks to the wonderful team at CALL Scotland for making and sharing these terrific resources.