Looking for a learning resource that goes beyond a quick overview and covers some of the details about providing AAC to school-aged children? Today, we visit an online learning site by the UK Department for Education called Communication-Augmentative and Assistive Strategies. It has wonderful information on a variety of AAC topics and downloadable resources for topics such as low tech AAC, vocabulary selection, and becoming a good communication partner. Take your time to explore this learning module and all of the resources it has to offer.
Tag Archive: education
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...]
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.
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...]
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...]
How We Do It: Developing & Implementing a District-wide Focus on Communication and 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...]
Today, guest blogger Sarah Mueller, a special education teacher in Rochester Michigan, shares her thoughts on supporting core vocabulary learning while working on functional life skills. Sarah teaches high school students with intellectual and developmental disabilities and strives to embed language and communication throughout her students’ entire school experience. Sarah helps her students become strong self-advocates as they prepare for adult life. Marlene Cummings, Sarah’s colleague and mentor, introduces the post. :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: I (Marlene Cummings) had the pleasure of meeting Sarah 2 years ago as a new teacher in one of my districts. She immediately engaged in our county level professional learning opportunities in AAC and Literacy. The AAC focus presented strategies to support AAC and language learning including: core vocabulary, aided language input, vocabulary instruction and opportunities. The literacy focus was designed to create and implement a comprehensive literacy program taught by Drs. Karen Erickson and David Koppenhaver. The outcome:... [Read More...]
We are pleased to have a return visit from special educators Lauren Pawlowski and Amy Devin with ideas for supporting AAC learners in the classroom. Amy and Lauren, who work in the public school system in Michigan, taught in resource rooms for years and have been teaching in self‐contained ASD elementary classrooms since 2009. At that time, there were few classrooms who were integrating core language instruction, but they didn’t let that stop them. Currently, they use manual communication boards, large instructional core boards, and individual AAC devices with their students. They are passionate literacy teachers and, in today’s post, tell us about their approach to shared reading lessons. Their video is chock full of tips to help you make these lessons successful. Enjoy! Shared Reading: It’s Not What They Know, It’s What They THINK! Happy Fall AAC users and facilitators! This month we would like to share some of our tips for... [Read More...]
Special educators Lauren Pawlowski and Amy Devin are back with tips for making AAC work in the classroom. In their first post, they talked about using a large communication board that is rich in core vocabulary for aided language input and AAC instruction. Today, they share some of the things they’ve learned to make this more manageable in a busy classroom. Enjoy! ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: We hope that many of you were able to make your Big Core boards for group instruction. Now what?? Using Big Core can take a while to get used to. Even after using it for several years, sometimes we still struggle with finding the words quickly. Don’t worry about this because our students can’t always find words quickly and it is good for them to see that everyone struggles with language at times. It can also be empowering to them if you ask for their help! The... [Read More...]
For some learners, AAC is essential in order for them to have access to the curriculum. Access, though, is a bit of a low bar. What we REALLY want is for them to have the supports they need in order to learn and achieve. In this post, we feature a trio of videos to help us look further into apps that will do just that. Thanks to the Center on Technology and Disability, and AT Specialists Diana Petschaue and Luis Perez for these wonderful webinars. http://www.ctdinstitute.org/library/2015-11-06/apps-across-curriculum-and-platforms-support-struggling-learners-series
Filed under: Video of the Week