HIE Awareness Month

April 18, 2022 by - Leave your thoughts


HIE Awareness Month

It doesn’t get as much attention as other disabilities in the AAC community, but some people with complex communication needs can trace the cause of their disability to Hypoxic Ischemic Encephalopathy (HIE). April is HIE Awareness Month so today we’re sharing information and resources for those who want to learn more. Let’s start by breaking down the term HIE. Hypoxic = lack of oxygen  Ischemic = restricted blood flow  Encephalopathy = affecting the brain Whether diagnosed as newborns or later in development, this form of brain injury is frequently associated with other conditions, such as cerebral palsy, seizure disorders, limited hearing and vision, feeding difficulties, and developmental challenges. There are many causes of HIE, including uterine ruptures and placental issues, near drowning, cardiac arrest, and other things that interrupt oxygen flow to the brain. By some estimates, 75-80% survive HIE, 50-70% experience seizures, and 40-50% develop a permanent developmental disability.... [Read More...]

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AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week # 16: April 2022

April 17, 2022 by - Leave your thoughts


AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week # 16: April 2022

Happy Sunday, AAC friends! Here is some AAC reading and viewing that may be of interest. Monday – (Re)Building a Desire to Use AAC: 3 Activities to Try Tuesday – AAC Link Up Wednesday – Video of the Week: Partner Assisted Scanning to Spell Messages Thursday – Throwback Thursday: Ideas for an AAC-friendly Earth Day —————————————————————— And while you’re here, check out some of these past posts. 5 Ways to Promote Consistent AAC Use Twin Powers Unite: Teaching AAC and Sight Words Pragmatic Skill Instruction and AAC with Matthew Baud and Dr. Jill Senner Parent Collaboration in AAC Therapies PrAACtical Questions with Vicki Clarke: What’s the Role of Core Vocabulary? Video of the Week: Telepractice in AAC – Working with What You’ve Got

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Throwback Thursday: Ideas for an AAC-friendly Earth Day

April 14, 2022 by - Leave your thoughts


Throwback Thursday: Ideas for an AAC-friendly Earth Day

For today’s Throwback Thursday, we’re reprising a past post with ideas for an AAC-friendly Earth Day. ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: Looking for some fun Earth Day activities that can be used for AAC practice and language learning? Here are some ideas for you. Learn about the importance of Earth Day with this book from Boardmaker. Getting to the Core of Earth Day Let’s Read Let’s Create Write an acrostic poem like this one by Donna O’Reilly. Make infused water for a planet-friendly drink using these resources from the AAC Language Lab. Play Earth Day BINGO with these LessonPix materials by Liz Sturgill. Let’s Go Outside! Make some Earth Day waffles with this recipe from Shevi Greebel. Create a language experience survey. Here are some possible questions for your survey What are your favorite outdoor activities? Tell me about a time when you had an outdoor adventure. What are some ways that you reuse and... [Read More...]

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Video of the Week: Partner Assisted Scanning to Spell Messages

April 13, 2022 by - Leave your thoughts


Video of the Week: Partner Assisted Scanning to Spell Messages

Partner-assisted scanning is a versatile access strategy that can be extremely beneficial for people with significant motor challenges. In today’s featured video, AAC expert and master clinician John Costello discusses how to use it for spelling and demonstrates this powerful strategy. You can learn more and download a copy of the communication materials here.   Direct Link to Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KyBkofHqBkY&t=6s&ab_channel=JohnCostello 

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AAC Link Up – April 12

April 12, 2022 by - Leave your thoughts


AAC Link Up - April 12

Happy Tuesday, AAC friends! Once a week we invite you to share your own AAC-related content, product news, or anything else that you’d like others in the AAC community to know about.  It may be a recent post you’ve written, a slide deck from your AAC presentation, a handout, video, or meme that you’ve posted online, an AAC product you’ve created, an announcement for an AAC course or conference, or any other prAACtical content you developed and want to share with the AAC community. To post your own link, scroll all the way down to the bottom of this post and complete the form. Enter the URL and the name/title in the boxes provided below. If you are on a mobile device, click over to the full website version to do this. The AAC Link Up is moderated to keep us from being spammed so it may take a little... [Read More...]

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(Re)Building a Desire to Use AAC: 3 Activities to Try

April 11, 2022 by - Leave your thoughts


(Re)Building a Desire to Use AAC: 3 Activities to Try

Jessa is learning to use an AAC app that is rich in core vocabulary. Despite dual diagnoses of autism and Down Syndrome, she’s picking it up quite well. Jessa’s not very keen on coming to therapy, though, and often puts her head down on the table to avoid engagement. Matthew goes with the flow. With more than a decade of therapy under his belt, he’s “learned to comply” and will generally follow directions that are given to him. For the most part, though, he seems to use his AAC because the adults want him to. Interaction using his AAC system doesn’t seem to bring Matthew much satisfaction. Kristina is a pretty proficient AAC user. Most people don’t realize that, though, because she tends to communicate in single words or short sentences. The other students in her special education classroom are far less communicatively competent, so when Kristina engages with 2-word... [Read More...]

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AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week # 15: April 2022

April 10, 2022 by - Leave your thoughts


AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week # 15: April 2022

Happy Sunday, AAC friends. We have some posts that you may be interested in. Monday – Autism Awareness and Acceptance Month 2022  Tuesday – AAC Link Up Wednesday – Video of the Week: Equitable Health Access to Health Care for AAC Users Thursday – AAC Goal Writing with Lauren Enders: Tools to Support Identification of AAC Learning Targets :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: If you are looking to do some book-related AAC teaching this week, check out some of Karen Natoci’s popular literacy-focused posts from the archives. PraAACtically Reading with Karen Natoci It’s Okay To Be Different I Like Myself Yo! Yes? The Family Book Hello Baby The Five Senses Are You My Mother? Over on the Farm (with Karen Baca)

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AAC Goal Writing with Lauren Enders: Tools to Support Identification of AAC Learning Targets

April 7, 2022 by - Leave your thoughts


AAC Goal Writing with Lauren Enders: Tools to Support Identification of AAC Learning Targets

We’re ending the week with some wonderful resources shared by AAC expert, Lauren Enders. In her continuation of the Goal Writing series, she reviews some important tools that can help in determining which skills to target when writing goals for AAC learners. You can see other posts in this series using the links below. AAC Goal Writing with Lauren Enders 5 Common Challenges Laying a Solid Foundation :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: In the first post of this series, you learned that you are in good company if you find AAC goal writing to be intimidating. Thankfully, you were also assured that despite the learning curve, you CAN write meaningful goals for AAC learners given the right tips, tools, and guidance. In the second post, you learned how the Four Communicative Competencies (Linguistic, Operational, Social, and Strategic) (Light et al., 1989, Light & McNaughton, 2014)) plus Psychosocial or Emotional Competency (Light & McNaughton, 2014, Blackstone... [Read More...]

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Autism Awareness and Acceptance Month 2022 

April 4, 2022 by - 2 Comments


Autism Awareness and Acceptance Month 2022 

What began in 1970 as a day to raise public awareness of autism has evolved to focus on building acceptance and support of autistic people.  Support comes in many ways, of course. Teachers, therapists, and parents, can and do support autistic children and adults in a multitude of ways based on their individual priorities, strengths, and needs. But that’s not all we can do.  Among other things, professionals can support autistic individuals by: Learning from them through watching their videos and attending their presentations, as well as by reading their books, articles, and posts; Purchasing things they create; Bringing attention to their work on social media;  Contributing to their crowd-sourced efforts (e.g., Patreon, GoFundMe), and Hiring them to speak, consult, write, etc. Today, we open our pages to all of you in an effort to raise awareness of autistic individuals who are creators, presenters, authors, mentors, and consultants. Share what... [Read More...]

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AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week # 14: April 2022

April 3, 2022 by - Leave your thoughts


AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week # 14: April 2022

Happy Sunday, AAC friends. Here are some posts that may be of interest. Monday – April Year of Core Vocabulary & School Year of Core Vocabulary Words Tuesday – AAC Link Up Wednesday – Video of the Week: Addressing Barriers to AAC Learning Thursday – Throwback Thursday: AAC Considerations When Dealing with Illness or Injury Friday – CAA Con Links: Abril 2022 ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: Still have time for a little more reading? Here are some additional posts for you to explore. Beyond Requesting: Thoughts on Teaching Information Transfer How I Do It: Encouraging AAC Implementation (Lauren Enders) PrAACtical Ways to Make Decisions About Thematic Therapy Materials In the Treasure Bag: Using Sharing Time to Focus on Vocabulary AAC in Motion: Walk the Walk, Talk the Talk with Tanna Neufeld

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