Tag Archive: families

PrAACtical Resources for Writing Notes to Send Home

July 30, 2015 by - Leave your thoughts

PrAACtical Resources for Writing Notes to Send Home

When children arrive home from school, they are often asked some version of ‘the’ question: “What did you do in school today?” A few years ago we wrote about strategies families can use to help facilitate that conversation and were so pleased to hear from school staff who took this to heart and helped their students practice these conversational skills. As busy as life in the classroom can be, many teachers and SLPs make the time to communicate with families about the students’ day at school and we love seeing their work. There are many ways to give daily/weekly updates, of course, but many use the tried-and-true strategy of sending a note home. There are lots of examples on the wonderful sharing site for Boardmaker Online. Here are some of them. 1. Katie Crayons   2. Orange County PS1 3. TASN Autism and Tertiary Behavior Supports 4. Megan Little   5. Evet Bresseas   6. Kristen Schmidt (English... [Read More...]

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PrAACtically July: Core Word Calendar by Rachael Langley

July 2, 2015 by - 3 Comments

PrAACtically July: Core Word Calendar by Rachael Langley

Hats off to Rachael Langley for taking time to develop and share another calendar with ideas for core word practice. As with previous calendars, she’s included lots of fun and easy ways to highlight and practice some of the July words from the first Year of Core Words list.

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5 Things We’ve Learned from our AAC Families

September 11, 2014 by - Leave your thoughts

5 Things We’ve Learned from our AAC Families

Here’s something we want our young clinicians to understand. Often families come to us for what we can share and teach them. Just as often, though, they’re the real teachers. Here are some lessons learned from some amazing families. Start where they are, not where you wish they were. Celebrate the tiniest of victories. Success breeds success. Small, sustainable changes are the best kind. When things have petered out, it’s okay to start over. It’s better than giving up. Muffins and fruit make those difficult meetings a little easier. (Thanks, Stephanie!) Happy fall semester!

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Five Facebook Groups for Families of Beginning Communicators

September 10, 2014 by - 4 Comments

Five Facebook Groups for Families of Beginning Communicators

What’s better than parents and professionals who are knowledgeable about beginning to use AAC with children? Connecting with them on Facebook. Here are some of the most active AAC-related groups out there. 1. Speak for Yourself Users Group (Despite it’s name, this one is not limited to families/professionals who use SFY.) 2. AAC: Alternative Awesome Communicators 3. Angelman, Literacy, and Education (Despite the name, the content is very applicable to a broad range of developmental disabilities.) 4. Apraxia-Kids (not AAC-specific but lots of good information) 5. PrAACtical AAC (Okay, we’re biased!)  

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AAC Therapy: Putting Parents in Charge

July 7, 2013 by - Leave your thoughts

AAC Therapy: Putting Parents in Charge

In this week’s video, we share the thoughts of Australian SLP Gail Bennell. In this video, Gail provides some interesting perspectives on helping families take charge of the AAC and other therapies in which their children participate. Gail offers professional online support to parents of nonverbal children and is on a mission to help nonverbal children everywhere learn how to communicate so they can reach their full potential. You can find her handouts and get more information at Gail’s website, www.RaisingNonverbalChildren.com . –  

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AACtual Therapy-AAC in Motion: Walk the Walk, Talk the Talk with Tanna Neufeld

March 28, 2013 by - Leave your thoughts

AAACtual Therapy-AAC in Motion: Walk the Walk, Talk the Talk with Tanna Neufeld

Tanna Neufeld hits another homerun with this post about co-treating children with multiple disabilities. Collaborating with our colleagues is both fun and challenging. Let’s take a look at the prAACtical ways that Tanna and her colleagues support kids with motor and visual impairments who are learning to use AAC.    Fridays are my favorite.  And not just for the obvious reasons (TGIF), but also because Fridays are one of the most challenging and exciting days of my work week.  Every Friday, I am lucky enough to team with my favorite PTs for joint treatment sessions to support several children with multiple motor and communication challenges. Around our center, we lovingly refer to these kids as our “motor kids”.  All of these little ones are nonverbal, and all have very complex motor challenges that significantly limit their ability to interact with traditional play and learning environments.   Many of these kids also... [Read More...]

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Beyond Good Intentions: Thoughts on PrAACtical Supports for Families

December 19, 2012 by - 7 Comments

December-Supporting-Families

Sometimes it’s hard to know how best to help families of AAC learners. There can be a dynamic tension between the things we would like them to do to maximize the AAC learning process and what they can realistically accomplish given the competing demands of their busy lives. We really believe that having families do more AAC at home will enhance the communication learning, though I’m not really sure that we have evidence to back up that belief. Nevertheless, we push for it. Nicely, of course. But we push. On a good day, it all works out. Or, at least it seems to. But does it really? Here are some things we’ve been thinking about. Each family has their own culture. Some families are highly structured, others are more spontaneous, and a few are downright chaotic. Whatever their nature, it is who they are and how they operate. We have... [Read More...]

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Simple Start: Visual Supports for Places We Go

November 9, 2012 by - Leave your thoughts

Simple Start: Visual Support for Places We Go

No matter where they work, SLPs supporting people who use AAC generally do what they can to improve communication across environments. In an earlier Simple Start post, we talked about using photos of places within a school to support language comprehension. By showing a picture of the cafeteria or gym as we say those words, we can help both students with language processing difficulties and those with behavior regulation issues. — In this post, we extend the same concept to travels in and around the community. Here are directions for making visual supports that can be used with students who have community-based instruction or by families as they go about their weekly errands and routines. Simple Start: Visual Support for Places in the Community Take photo of locations in the community that the AAC user is likely to visit. Insert them into a document and add labels for each one... [Read More...]

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Creative Uses of the iPod for Students Who Use AAC

October 14, 2012 by - Leave your thoughts

Creative Uses of the iPod for Students Who Use AAC

Just when we think we’ve ‘seen it all,’ along comes another set of ideas for how to use technology to support kids with limited communication skills. In this week’s video, we peek in at what’s going on at the Special School District of Saint Louis County. Hats off to this team of creative professionals for getting the most out of their iPods! We love how their ideas save time for the teacher, enhance student learning, and extend communication to the home. Looks like a win-win-win situation for the classroom, family, and student.

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