Tag Archive: school

PrAACtical Collaboration: Teaming Up to Build Communication with a Treat Cart (Part 2)

December 14, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts

PrAACtical Collaboration: Teaming Up to Build Communication with a Treat Cart (Part 2)

Today, we hear more from Colorad0-based SLP Kimberly Walker who explains more about how they use the Treat Cart activity to support the communicative development of her students with AAC needs. You can see the first part of her post here. ——————————————————— The Treat Cart has made our co-treating planning so simple.  The first Thursday of the month we take inventory to see what things we need to buy to restock our cart.  We have done this by making a graph with paper and also doing an actual object graph with the products and sticky notes to simulate the products gone.  We target the language of more and less and also work on making a list to take to the store. On the second Thursday of the month, we work on identifying environmental print of the products we are selling and practice selling to each other targeting the skills in... [Read More...]

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PrAACtical Resources: Communication Supports Inventory for Children and Youth

December 11, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts

PrAACtical Resources: Communication Supports Inventory for Children and Youth

As AAC practitioners well know, children who use some form of augmentative communication need a wide array of supports in order to be successful. In this post, we share a useful tool to systematically gather information about those supports to help teams with educational planning.  Developed by Drs. Charity Rowland and Melanie Fried-Oken and Ms. Sandra Steiner, The Communication Supports Inventory – Children & Youth (CSI-CY) is designed to make goal writing easier for teachers and SLPs who work with students who have AAC needs. It is a wonderful way to build collaboration and get the team pointed in the same direction. Learn more about the CSI- CY here. You can access it online or download it for a hard copy.

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PrAACtical Collaboration: Teaming Up to Build Communication with a Treat Cart (Part 1)

December 7, 2017 by - 1 Comment

PrAACtical Collaboration: Teaming Up to Build Communication with a Treat Cart (Part 1)

Looking for ways to give your AAC learners the opportunity to communicate with a broader range of communication partners? Interested in practicing AAC skills outside of the classroom? When I saw this fun learning experience that SLP Kimberly Walker and her colleagues developed, I knew it would spark the imaginations of some of our prAACtical friends. I am continually amazed by the creativity of teachers, SLPs, OTs, and others who are passionate about helping students become more proficient with their AAC and language. Based in Colorado, Kimberly works with students in kindergarten through grade 5 at Tarver Elementary. In this post, she explains how they set up a Treat Cart in order to spice up the opportunities for AAC, language, and literacy learning. ——————————————————— Finding ways for our AAC users to see the power of communication by using their AAC device is hard at times.  My Occupational Therapist and I... [Read More...]

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How We Do It: Developing & Implementing a District-wide Focus on Communication and Core Vocabulary (Part 2)

October 5, 2017 by - 4 Comments

How We Do It: Developing, Implementing a District-wide Focus on Communication and Core Vocabulary (Part 2)

We’re back with Georgia-based SLP Jennifer Ro to hear more about a district-wide rollout of AAC in which they established (and have maintained) a core vocabulary focus. Jennifer is currently the lead AAC-SLP on Forsyth County Schools’ Assistive Technology Team where she provides AAC implementation support and trainings for staff and families and conducts individual AAC student consults.   You can see Part 1 of the post here. Today, Jennifer shares some of what they learned in the process of creating AAC materials for the classroom and supporting the implementation of those materials. Let’s continue with more ‘lessons learned’ from this AAC experience. =================   How We Do It: Developing, Implementing a District-wide Focus on Communication & Core Vocabulary (Part 2) How we did it. And keep doing it …  😉       Create and develop supplemental materials that can be utilized universally and then modified, if needed, for individual student or teacher... [Read More...]

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How We Do It: Developing & Implementing a District-wide Focus on Communication and Core Vocabulary (Part 1)

September 28, 2017 by - 3 Comments

How We Do It: Developing, Implementing a District-wide Focus on Communication & Core Vocabulary (Part 1)

One of the best parts of blogging is getting to connect with talented professionals who are committed to meeting the needs of people who use AAC.   In today’s post, SLP Jennifer Ro shares some of the ‘lessons learned’ in implementing a core vocabulary approach to AAC throughout an entire school district. Jennifer is part of the Assistive Technology Team at Forsyth County Schools in Georgia. Focusing much of her 20+ year career in the field of AAC, Jennifer has provided AAC and speech-language services through the public schools, private clinics, early intervention programs, and community-based adult group homes and workshops.    Jennifer helped develop Forsyth’s Core Word Board utilized district-wide. Her current interests include collaborative models of service delivery and staff development in the area of AAC. She has presented at the state and local level with a focus on communication related to AAC, core vocabulary, and language development, social-emotional engagement, visual... [Read More...]

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Video of the Week: Supporting AAC Learners in the Classroom

August 2, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts

Video of the Week: Supporting AAC Learners in the Classroom

Getting ready to head back to school? There are lots of things we can do to help our AAC learners be successful in the classroom and develop their language skills. In today’s post, we feature another wonderful video in the Power AAC series sponsored by PaTTAN. Master AAC clinician Gail Van Tatenhove is the speaker and shares essential information about ways in which partners can support students who are learning to use AAC systems. Before beginning, you may want to download this handout with links to video clips of the target strategies being used.   We’re grateful to Gail and PaTTAN for making this video and sharing it so that we can all benefit.  

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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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Video of the Week: Breaking Down Barriers to Inclusive Education for AAC Learners

June 14, 2017 by - Leave your thoughts

Video of the Week: Breaking Down Barriers to Inclusive Education for AAC Learners

How can we help our AAC learners become cognitively engaged and participate fully in instructional activities? What can we do to support social connectedness and help them make contributions to classroom learning experiences? In this week’s featured video, which is embedded in a fuller AT Internet Module, Erin Sheldon helps us answer those kinds of questions and shares a framework to help us plan for full participation in learning experiences. We’re grateful to Erin, OCALI, and AT Internet Modules for creating and sharing these wonderful resources.  

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Administratively Speaking: Recruiting AAC SLPs (Part 1)

May 22, 2017 by - 4 Comments

Administratively Speaking: Recruiting AAC SLPs (Part 1)

In a great many places, SLPs are in short supply. SLPs with specialized skills, such as those who can support students with AAC needs, are even harder to find. How can program administrators find, and, even more importantly, retain qualified SLPs? In this series, we share a few thoughts on the topic of space. One of the most meaningful things that an administrator is pretty simple: Ensure that the SLP has appropriate space in which to work. This basic requirement is frequently overlooked, particularly in educational settings. In schools, the SLP space is sometimes transient (e.g., M/W/F in the psychologist office, T/Th in the OT/PT area), inadequate (e.g., former book storage closet), or inappropriate (e.g., noisy environment, too small to hold groups).  Sometimes, the space for SLP work is completely nonexistent. In the past few weeks, I’ve heard from SLPs who are expected to function without a dedicated workspace beyond... [Read More...]

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