PrAACtical Questions with Vicki Clarke: What’s the Role of Core Vocabulary?

July 6, 2017 by - 2 Comments


PrAACtical Questions: What's the Role of Core Vocabulary?

Today, we’re welcoming back Vicki Clarke, a Georgia-based SLP who has been specializing in AAC for over 25 years. Her practice, Dynamic Therapy Associates, serves children and adults with significant communication challenges in clinical and educational settings. Most of Vicki’s guest posts have been on the topic of assessment (click here to view them), but in this post, she shares her thoughts on the role of core vocabulary in AAC systems.   :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: I’ve enjoyed listening to the wonderful presenters at the AAC In The Cloud sessions last week.  It’s exciting to see AAC knowledge being shared to such a wide and varied audience!  Core vocabulary was a hot topic last week so I thought it would be a good time to chat about it! At conferences, in blogs, all over the internet and from your AAC specialists, you may have gotten the memo that Core Vocabulary is an important component... [Read More...]

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Site of the Month: UDL Technology

July 3, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts


Site of the Month: UDL Technology

Looking for ways to up your game in using technology in your therapy and teaching? Then you may well appreciate a website devoted to John O’Sullivan’s book, UDL Technology: Technology for Universal Design for Learning and Special Education. The site features sections on: File sharing Interactive whiteboards Projecting with a tablet Instant student feedback Presentations and representations of information Library Math Science Literature Social studies Learning a language Writing Fine arts Maker space Notes Memory Special education Occupational therapy Speech and language AAC Behavior AT for physical disabilities Preschool And more. In each area, there are multiple suggestions for specific programs, apps, and web tools that are tried and true. Many of the tools can be used for multiple purposes, so don’t shy away from checking out sections that don’t seem to relevant to your work. You just might find a hidden gem! This site is valuable both as inspiration... [Read More...]

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AACtual Therapy-AAC Intervention for Beginning Communicators: Presume Competence and Be the Fun

June 29, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts


AACtual Therapy-AAC Intervention for Beginning Communicators: Presume Competence and Be the Fun

Today we learn from a veteran AAC SLP, Lindsey Paden Cargill, who has been working in the field of SLP for 12 years and is passionate about service provision and research in the area of AAC for individuals with developmental disabilities. In addition to her caseload, she is also the Therapy Manager at a private therapy and education center in Columbus, Ohio called Bridgeway Academy. Lindsey is currently collaborating with The Ohio State University on several AAC-related research studies including an immersive AAC classroom and a parent-training course. AAC Intervention Strategies for Beginning Communicators: Presume Competence and Be the Fun In the last ten years providing energetic, creative and data-driven AAC language therapy has become my passion… or maybe obsession. My mission statement is for anyone interacting with a new AAC user to “presume competence and be the fun.” To accomplish my goals I have to prioritize several things: providing a... [Read More...]

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PrAACtical Learning with AAC in the Cloud

June 27, 2017 by - 1 Comment


PrAACtical Learning with AAC in the Cloud

What are you doing later today? How about tomorrow? If you’re in the mood for AAC learning, please join me at this free online conference, AAC in the Cloud. 3 tracks with presentations on intriguing topics Great presenters, including a keynote by Kate Ahern Space for interaction and dialogue Free?! Yes, thanks to the amazing team at CoughDrop. Click on the image below to find out more. See you soon!  

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PrAACtically July: AAC Resources for A Year of Core Vocabulary

June 26, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts


PrAACtically July: AAC Resources for A Year of Core Vocabulary

Know anyone who has access to AAC tools but doesn’t yet use them throughout the day? Keiran has a new AAC app that is well-populated with core vocabulary. Gabbie has had an SGD for awhile but doesn’t use it as frequently as her team had hoped. Hudson is transitioning from PECS to an AAC device with more robust language. While different in many ways, each of these learners has a common need: frequent opportunities to learn about and use core vocabulary. To accomplish this, their SLPs, teachers, and families select a dozen or so core words and pay special attention to those each month. That allows them to highlight this small group of words using focused language stimulation, aided language input, and specific activities designed to teach or practice them. In previous years, we shared lists of some core words to help you do just that.    Set 1 (2013:... [Read More...]

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AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week #26: June, 2017

June 25, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts


AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week #26: June, 2017

Busy week? Here are a couple of posts that you might have missed. Monday: Administratively Speaking: 5 Considerations for Recruiting and Retaining AAC SLPs (Part 2) Wednesday: Video of the Week: Object Symbols and Core Vocabulary And while we’re at it, here are a few throwbacks on topics of prAACtical interest. AAC and Emergent Literacy SMORRES From Solitary Play to Interaction: 5 Things to Try with Kids Who Love Their iPad Games Have a great week!

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Administratively Speaking: 5 Considerations for Recruiting and Retaining AAC SLPs (Part 2)

June 19, 2017 by - 2 Comments


Administratively Speaking: 5 Considerations for Recruiting and Retaining AAC SLPs (Part 2)

Do any of these situations sound familiar? Janelle, an SLP in an urban elementary school, was flustered when the principal directed her to ensure that her students’ AAC devices didn’t go home on weekends or during school breaks. She hated to see the students lose access to communication during those times but, Janelle understood the principal’s logic. The device had been bought and paid for by the school, and they had to scrounge around to find the funding for it. If it were to get damaged or lost, the school would have to replace it, and there were no funds for that. It was unfortunate, Janelle felt, but, what could she do? Later in the year, when the results of a system-wide audit came out, Janelle’s students were some of the ones identified as having been denied their rights to a Free, Appropriate Public Education (FAPE). Had she known the... [Read More...]

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How I Do It: A Year of Core Words in Action

June 15, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts


How I Do It: A Year of Core Words in Action

Some of the best resources are the ones that we can modify to use in ways that fit our own specific needs. In this post, SLP Kim Hurley, a graduate of Indiana University, shares her experiences in experimenting with the Year of Core Vocabulary approach. Kim has spent the past 15 years as a specialist for students with moderate and severe disabilities or complex communication needs in educational settings. Currently, she is employed by Forest Hills Special Education Cooperative, serving students in rural Monroe and Owen Counties in south central Indiana. Enjoy! :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: For the past 15 years, I have been working as an SLP serving public school students who have moderate to severe disabilities or complex communication needs.  Several students benefit from various forms of augmentative communication, and in my years of work I have come to appreciate the flexibility that a robust, core word based system provides.  However, when... [Read More...]

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AAC In the Classroom: Considerations for Modeling Core Vocabulary

June 12, 2017 by - 3 Comments


AAC In the Classroom: Considerations for Modeling Core Vocabulary

Here in the US, many schools just let out for summer vacation but some special education teachers and SLPs are already thinking about things they want to prepare over the school break so they’ll be ready for fall. Some are contemplating changes to the ways they support AAC in the classroom. We’ve heard from several who are planning to prioritize modeling of core vocabulary using aided language input. Before we start making large core boards and other support materials, though, it’s helpful to stop and think through some important issues. A little planning now will save time and effort in the long run. If you’re planning to do this kind of prep work over the summer, here are some questions for your team to consider. Does each student with complex communication needs have access to an AAC system that includes core vocabulary? If not, why not? In some cases, the students... [Read More...]

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