Tag Archive: How I Do It

AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week #8: February 2019

February 24, 2019 by - Leave your thoughts

AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week #8: February 2019

Happy Sunday, AAC friends. Here are some posts you may have missed in your busy week. Monday – 5 AAC Handouts from Conferences Near and Far Tuesday – AAC Link Up Wednesday – Video of the Week: Growing Language with AAC Modeling Thursday – How I Do It: Literacy, Language, and AAC with Jeanna Antrim :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: If you have the time, here are some past posts you may enjoy. AAC Skills Assessment for Direct Selectors Selecting AAC Apps & Devices: A Handful of Reasons Not to Skip the Trial Period Observational Assessment of Beginning Communicators Bilingual AAC Assessment Tips by Lindsay Oesch Say What?!? AAC Assessment for Children Who Speak with Dr. Jill Senner and Matthew Baud

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How I Do It: Literacy, Language, and AAC with Jeanna Antrim

February 21, 2019 by - 3 Comments

How I Do It: Language, Literacy, & AAC with Jeanna Antrim

We have deep respect for clinicians and educators who are willing to share their approach to developing strong AAC instructional sessions. Today, we are excited to welcome SLP Jeanna Antrim to these pages. Jeanna has been an SLP for the past 7 years practicing at special education cooperatives in southern Illinois. She works both with students in a self-contained behavior school and as an AAC facilitator conducting AAC evaluations, providing direct therapy, and consulting with school teams. In this post, she shares her approach to developing AAC sessions using shared reading. (Don’t miss her book packet and handouts.) ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: How I Do It: Literacy, Language, and AAC After graduating, it took me a few years of trial and error before I figured out (and don’t get me wrong I’m still figuring out) my niche. I absolutely love books and love how I can target any language and communication concept within a... [Read More...]

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How I Do It: Connecting with Colleagues in a Shared Community of Practice by Karen Natoci Florka

November 25, 2014 by - 3 Comments

How I Do It: Connecting with Colleagues in a Shared Community of Practice by Karen Natoci Florka

I had the pleasure of meeting Karen Natoci Florka last month when I visited Michigan and am delighted that she was willing to introduce us to the Shared Community of Practice from the team at The Communication Matrix. Karen is an SLP who has served students aged 3-26 with various physical, sensory and intellectual challenges at Wing Lake Developmental Center (Detroit area) since 2001. She is a part time lecturer at Wayne State University where she teaches a course entitled “Communication Acquisition and Educational Interventions for Students with Moderate to Severe Impairments.” She is part of the Communication Matrix Charter group. Click on the image below to learn more. The Communication Matrix is growing into a Shared Community of Practice!  I remember the first few weeks in my new job at a wonderful, magical, school for children with complex communication needs. It was time for my first evaluation. These amazing students were challenging!  They seemed... [Read More...]

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How I Do It: Preparing AAC Learners for Their First SGD

November 13, 2014 by - 3 Comments

One of the greatest privileges of being an AAC SLP is getting to see kids grow and mature when they are given the appropriate communication tools and supports. The other day, I observed a tall, strong young man with significant autism arrive at this therapy session carrying a padded case. Once in the room, he gently laid it on the table, carefully opened it, took out his SGD, and gingerly placed it on the table in front of him.  He had gotten his first SGD this summer as a tween, after having used the one in our AAC lab in his therapy sessions for the preceding months. There were some concerns that when he got his own SGD, he might be a little confused initially since this would be the first time he could actually take the device home. Additionally, some were worried that he might be rough with it... [Read More...]

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How I Do It: Implementing Aided Language Input with Alicia Garcia

October 3, 2013 by - Leave your thoughts

How I Do It: Implementing Aided Language Input with Alicia Garcia

We are so pleased to have reconnected with SLP Alicia Garcia and are even more delighted that she agreed to do a guest post. Alicia is the clinical lead of the AAC Clinic at One Kids Place, a children’s treatment centre in northern Ontario. She has over 20 years of experience in pediatric rehabilitation practice in private and public settings, including clinical practice in AAC clinics and programs in Wisconsin, Florida, and now in Ontario. In this post, Alicia addresses one of our favorite clinical strategies in a very prAACtical way. Implementing Aided Language Stimulation: 8 Frequent Mistakes and How to Avoid Them Aided Language seems like a simple concept: Partners should model or demonstrate picture communication when talking to children who are learning to use picture communication, so that they would learn by example. Yet, when it comes to implementation we see frequent mistakes and misinterpretations. The most commons being:... [Read More...]

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How I Do It: 5 Ways to Tell If Your Students are Becoming Competent Communicators with Marlene Cummings

July 18, 2013 by - Leave your thoughts

5 Ways to Tell if Your Students are Becoming Competent Communicators with Marlene Cummings

It’s always a good day when we get to share the thoughts of veteran AAC SLP, Marlene Cummings. In this post, Marlene  talks about the signs to look for as clients gain skills with AAC and wraps up her series of posts on her yearlong experience in providing embedded professional learning  experiences in Oakland Schools.  You can see her earlier posts on cultivating the right mindset, their framework for AAC success, her AAC implementation toolbox, and the communication environment. 5 things in our “Destination Toolbox” “Are we there yet?” or “Five Ways to Tell That Your Students are Becoming Competent Communicators” Students are: Participating in the purposes of communication by novelly generating multiple word phrases demonstrating a variety of communicative functions Taking multiple communicative turns with multiple partners in multiple environments Using words from many different word classes Using words to talk about words Using language to communicate and communicating to learn... [Read More...]

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How I Do It: A Framework for Success-Getting Started in the Exciting World of Communication and AAC

May 30, 2013 by - Leave your thoughts

How I Do It: A Framework for Success-Getting Started in the Exciting World of Communication and AAC

 We couldn’t be  more excited to have a return visit from Marlene Cummings, a wonderful SLP who is currently serving as an AAC Consultant to the AAC Team at Oakland Schools. In her first post, Marlene talked about strategies for cultivating the right mindset for AAC teaching. In this post, Marlene continues sharing elements of her Framework for Success in discussing the Knowledge Toolbox, developed with the Oakland Schools AAC Team.     5 Things in Your “Knowledge Toolbox” What is already in my “knowledge toolbox” of communication, language and learning? Yes, you do have a full toolbox. You just don’t realize it. And of course there are always new and exciting things to add. You already know this stuff!! REMEMBER??? It is important to step back and think broadly about communication and what it really does. Sometimes we get caught in the details of our work and can’t see the forest through the... [Read More...]

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How We Do It: Essential TRICKs for Supporting AAC in Schools, Part 2

May 9, 2013 by - Leave your thoughts

Today we welcome back 3 SLPs from the Orange County Public School (OCPS) AT team, Cathy George, Marcia Sterner, and Marcia Piersall. They are part of a very active and competent AT Team that supports over 700 students with dedicated AAC devices. It is no surprise that they’ve come up with a list of  5 essential TRICKs that they count on to help them support these students and their educational teams. You can read about the first 2 TRICKS, Try It and Resources, here and download some of their terrific resources. Today, we learn about the rest of their TRICKs: Information, Can’t Live Without It, and Kick It Up A Notch. Give Me Five: Essential TRICKS, Part 2 INFORMATION about the student Student interests What systems previously tried What tasks s/he is struggling with Trial data sheet– Communicative competence organizer CAN’T LIVE WITHOUT IT: In addition to AAC devices, these... [Read More...]

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How I Do It: Writing IEP Goals for Students Who Use AAC with Lauren Enders

April 25, 2013 by - 5 Comments

How I Do It: Writing IEP Goals for Students Who Use AAC with Lauren Enders

We’re so happy to welcome Lauren Enders back to share some more thoughts on AAC and the IEP. In her first post on this topic, Lauren addressed some frequently asked questions. Today, she provides a very valuable perspective on writing IEP goals for students who use or need AAC and some wonderful resources. Very often, I receive requests for support from teachers and speech therapists that are writing IEP goals for their students who use AAC.  When we sit down to discuss their questions, the first thing I remind them is that AAC goals are no different from any other IEP goal.  I recall a workshop I attended years ago presented by Gail VanTatenhove that helps put IEP goals for AAC into perspective.  Gail said that AAC therapy is just language therapy.  Isn’t that true? Aren’t we just teaching language?  For this student, language is simply being expressed in a... [Read More...]

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How I Do It: Cultivating an “I Can” Mindset with Marlene Cummings

March 21, 2013 by - Leave your thoughts

How I Do It: Cultivating an "I Can" Mindset with Marlene Cummings

As much as we love fresh new voices in the AAC community, there is simply nothing like the voice of experience. When a program has had more than 40 years of experience providing AAC services, we listen! Today, we are honored to have Marlene Cummings, an AAC SLP from Michigan, share the collective wisdom of her team. I have found that one of the joys in my professional life is asking hard questions about my present work and then figuring out ways to address those questions. Much of my 30 + years have been spent designing and implementing programs, systems and materials to support young children with complex communication needs in the role of the teacher in these classrooms. I explored ways to design environments and develop curricular frameworks and instructional materials, which would provide students with the instruction and opportunities to become competent communicators, all from the view of... [Read More...]

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