Published on May 24th, 2013 | by Carole Zangari8
5 Things Not to Say to AAC Learners
People who are learning to express themselves with AAC need to build their self-concept as competent communicators. One of the ways we can support that process is by being careful about the ways in which we refer to their communication. Here are a few things we try to avoid saying.
“Show me [on your device].” (Instead, build the language of communication, with directives such as “Tell me” or “Say it.”)
“Press the switch.” (Instead, refer to the function that the switch is being used for. E.g., “Make it go”) See Ian Bean’s great post on this subject.
“Tell me on your talker.” (If they tell you one way, and you understood the message…celebrate, reward, and encourage! If you make them repeat themselves using a different strategy, they may come to view communication using AAC as a chore. And that’s not so good for motivation…)
“I know you can do it. You did it yesterday. You’re just being stubborn.” (There are lots of good reasons for inconsistency but even if that wasn’t so, there is no room for calling someone stubborn in a professional context.)
- “Hurry up.” (Just. Wait.)