PrAACtical Thinking 10 AAC Intervention Strategies We Can’t Live Without

Published on September 13th, 2013 | by Carole Zangari

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10 AAC Intervention Strategies We Can’t Live Without

It’s a new semester for us and we’re having lots of conversations with student clinicians about teaching strategies. Here are some of the things they’re putting in their AAC toolkits.

  1. Making language visible: Use visual supports to give information, explain, set boundaries, and make expectations clear.

  2. Aided language input and focused language stimulation: Teach AAC by speaking AAC.

  3. Communication temptations: Make the client want to communicate to get his/her own agenda met

  4. Expansions and extensions: The language facilitation strategies we all studied in our language intervention classes work in AAC, too!

  5. Repetition with variety: Working on the same thing in different ways is a sure way to build learning and keep treidthings fresh

  6. Contrastive examples: Teach through the power of clear examples, both positive AND negative 

  7. Backward and forward chaining: Great for teaching things that have multiple steps, like sending emails or posting to Facebook

  8. Structure: Creating structure helps learner better understand the expectations. And understanding builds cooperation and engagement.

  9. Written choice: Love this for our adults who are so eager for conversation

  10. Recasts: Another tried-and-true strategy used by therapists with speaking children and adults that is just as effective with AAC learners

Do you have a favorite teaching strategy? We’d love to hear about it.


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About the Author

Carole Zangari

Carole Zangari has been involved in the practice and teaching of AAC for over 20 years. She is a professor of speech-language pathology and has been fortunate to have been able to introduce many children and adults to the world of AAC. "Far and away the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing." Theodore Roosevelt

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