Video of the Week (Spanish with English Subtitles): Giving Everyone a Voice

May 24, 2017 by - 1 Comment


Video of the Week (Spanish with English Subtitles): Giving Everyone a Voice

It is so exciting to see how AAC is being implemented around the world. In this week’s video, we travel to Guatemala to feature the work of Isabel Orellana de Chang. The video is in Spanish, but you can use the closed caption buttons at the bottom of the video to turn on English subtitles. This is a great resource to share with our Spanish-speaking friends. Enjoy!  

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Video of the Week: AAC Conversation Club

May 17, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts


Video of the Week: AAC Conversation Club

For people who are learning to use AAC, therapy is important. Good instruction matters. But you know what else really matters? Having the chance to build relationships and talk with other people just like you. Today’s featured video highlights a group that has been offering this opportunity to the community for several years. Dr. Nancy Robinson and her students in the Communicative Disorders Clinic at San Francisco State University have been hosting a social opportunity group that brings together people who use AAC. Let’s take a peek into Conversation Club. Direct Link to Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1YzBsriqRU

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Video of the Week: AACtual Advocacy

May 10, 2017 by - 1 Comment


Video of the Week: AACtual Advocacy

Better Hearing and Speech Month (#BHSM) is all about reaching out and advocating for access to communication supports. As professionals, advocacy is part of our core roles, though we generally struggle with finding the time to do as much as we’d like to. Few of us, however, have the opportunity to speak about behalf of AAC on the floor of the United States Senate. In today’s post, we share the recording of Rick Creech, lifelong user of AAC, speaking to the Special Committee on Aging. In the first part, we hear Rick’s prepared remarks to the Senate. Rick takes questions from the committee in the second video. Aging Without Community: The Consequences of Isolation and Loneliness Rick Answers Senators’ Questions

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Video of the Week: AAC Assessment with a Formal Test

May 3, 2017 by - 4 Comments


Video of the Week: AAC Assessment with a Formal Test

There aren’t many formal assessment instruments designed expressly for people who need AAC, so it’s important to know about the ones that are available. In today’s post, we feature two videos on the Test of Aided Communication Symbol Performance (the TASP). Authored by Dr. Joan Bruno (creator of the Gateway programs for SGDs and AAC apps), this test helps us answer some of the questions we have when selecting or creating AAC systems for people with complex communication needs. In this first video, we get a brief overview of the TASP from Dr. Lori Geist.   Next, let’s hear more about it from practicing clinicians and see a demonstration of some of the subtests.   Do you use formal testing in your AAC assessments? We’d love to hear about those experiences.

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Video of the Week: AACtually Communicating

April 26, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts


Video of the Week: AACtually Communicating

At school In clinics and hospitals At home In restaurants and shops People are supporting children with complex communication needs by speaking AAC and building opportunities for communication learning. Here are a few short videos showing what they’ve been up to. Vanderbilt’s Early Intervention Program are getting some communication in while playing and making music in preschool.   Check out Shelane Nielsen and her handsome guy gooping it up in AACtion at home.   Jill Baldessari explains how Miguel and his SLP get their eye gaze on.   Take a peek at Deb using both prestored messages and single word vocabulary at a restaurant.   Let’s see how these classmates are working together in their general education classroom.   Ready for a bit of reading instruction, AAC style?   Do you have videos of AACtual communication? We’d love to have you share them!  

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Video of the Week – Twin Powers Unite: Teaching AAC and Sight Words

April 19, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts


Video of the Week - Twin Powers Unite: Teaching AAC and Sight Words

Having trouble getting AAC integrated throughout the classroom day? Veteran SLP Maureen Castillo took a creative approach to this common problem in the classrooms she supports. In this video, she discusses a project she created to foster AAC learning and use in the context of literacy activities. Learn how she combines the teaching of core vocabulary and Dolch sight words using aided language input, peer modeling, anchor books, and more. The video was made possible by Saltillo and is part of their free webinar series. Many thanks to Maureen and to Saltillo for making this available. Direct Link to Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=epQ3QlBg0hs

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Video of the Week: TELL ME – AAC in the Preschool Classroom

April 12, 2017 by - 3 Comments


Video of the Week: TELL ME - AAC in the Preschool Classroom

Do you work in or support preschool classrooms? Are you interested in infusing more AAC teaching throughout the day? If so, the TELL ME program may be of interest. This post has an overview of the program I developed with my friend and colleague, Lori Wise, in order to give teachers and therapists a better understanding of ways that they can integrate AAC learning throughout the classroom day. Many thanks to the fine folks at Saltillo for inviting me to do this webinar and for allowing us to share the recording.  We are grateful for the support of SLP Joni Nygard and the wonderful team at Attainment for helping us bring this work to fruition. You can download the handout for the video here and see some samples of the TELL ME program here. What works for you in teaching AAC in the preschool classroom? Share your ideas so we can... [Read More...]

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Video of the Week: From Presence to Contribution – A Family’s Journey Towards an Inclusive Life

April 5, 2017 by - 2 Comments


Video of the Week: From Presence to Contribution - A Family's Journey Towards an Inclusive Life

Why do we work so hard to support effective communication through AAC? In the end, the real goal is to help people live rich and enviable lives. Working toward that starts with a vision and that’s the subject of Erin Sheldon’s talk, Including Maggie. Many thanks to Kathy Howery and the Alberta Regional Professional Development Consortia for making this available. If you think you know inclusion and if you think you know what the end game is in AAC, don’t skip this. All of us have something to learn from this family’s journey toward an inclusive life. Direct Link to Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rkf3LD6047s&list=PL6P1FySUgEPR1aG-ZRYi363jtaniNJFqC&index=13

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Video of the Week: On Selecting Core Vocabulary

March 29, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts


Video of the Week: On Selecting Core Vocabulary

Ensuring that AAC systems include high frequency words sets the stage for us to teach language that is flexible and functional across a variety of settings. For whom is that appropriate? How many words? Which ones? In today’s featured video, master clinician Gail Van Tatenhove tackles all of these issues and more. This video and the accompanying resources (which can be found here) were part of the Power AAC series Gail created for  PaATTAN to support their efforts in building capacity for high quality AAC services. We’re indebted to them for making this available so all can learn from it.

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Video of the Week: Make a Core Vocabulary Folder

March 22, 2017 by - 6 Comments


Video of the Week: Make a Core Vocabulary Folder

Looking for a core+fringe AAC display that is easy to make and not overwhelming to use? This post may have just what you need. It’s great to see the variety of ways in which professionals are embracing AAC options and using what they know to teach others. In today’s post, we feature a video by the Louisiana South/Central Regional AT Center in which they take us through the step-by-step process of making a versatile AAC support that can be a wonderful starting point for some of our learners. In addition to the video, this generous team shares their files so you can make one of your own (click here to download; you can get the SymbolStix version here) and even share the source for the vinyl pockets they use. Pretty prAACtical! Thanks, Louisiana South/Central Regional AT Center, for your collegiality in sharing this with all of us!

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