Tag Archive: language intervention

Video of the Week: Moving Beyond Single Words with AAC

March 27, 2019 by - Leave your thoughts

Video of the Week: Moving Beyond Single Words with AAC

Have you worked with AAC learners who’ve acquired a good deal of knowledge about their SGD but communicate primarily in single symbol messages? In today’s featured video, veteran SLP Susan Berkowitz provides helpful information on this topic. This archived presentation, AAC Users-Moving Beyond Single Words, was part of the wonderful AAC in the Cloud Conference hosted by Coughdrop in 2018. Handouts for this session can be downloaded here.  Heartfelt thanks to the entire team at Coughdrop for organizing their wonderful conferences and making these presentations available. Coughdrop continues to host this amazing online conference which is free to participants around the globe. You can register for the 2019 AAC in the Cloud Conference here. You can learn more from Susan at her blog, Kidz Learn Language. Direct Link to Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8D_-yjcVhE

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Using Generalization Probes to Gauge Language Learning in AAC

March 21, 2019 by - Leave your thoughts

Using Generalization Probes to Gauge Language Learning in AAC

In her role as the team’s SLP, Christy frequently collaborates with classroom teachers to identify areas of language development where students learning AAC need specific goals and instruction. Goals for her students address a range of areas. Given frequent aided language input, Evan will use 2-symbol sentences to make relevant comments at least twice per activity. When presented with preferred and non-preferred options, Sasha will independently request desired activities/objects with 70% accuracy. In the context of peer interactions, Tegan will ask a ‘What’ question in 3 out of 5 opportunities. Given gestural cues, Matthew will converse on a partner-selected topic for at least 4 conversational turns. With visual supports, Gabby will use subject + verb sentences to describe pictures, materials or events in 4 out of 6 trials. To help the students acquire these skills, Christy carefully plans the instructional sequence and selects contexts appropriate for the intervention targets. She... [Read More...]

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AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week # 30 – July 2018

July 22, 2018 by - Leave your thoughts

AAC Posts from PrAACtical Week # 30 - July 2018

Hope you had a wonderful, AAC-filled week. Here are a handful of posts you may have missed. Monday – Beyond the Basics: Thoughts On Effective Language Instruction for AAC Learners Tuesday – AAC Link Up Wednesday – Video of the Week: Aided AAC and the IEP Thursday – Beyond the Big Core Board :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: Still have room for more? Here’s a small selection for you to peruse. “Can I Ask You a Question?” Language Experience Surveys Language Experience Surveys: 8 Fun Ideas Strengthening the Communication Environment Barriers to Access for AAC Learners Living an Accessible Life

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Using Visual Sidekicks to Support Language Intervention

May 10, 2018 by - 4 Comments

Using Visual Sidekicks to Support Language Intervention

SLPs Lori Sanzeri and Chelsea Collins, creators of Core City,  are back to share ideas for implementing AAC in the classroom. Today, they share their experiences in using visual supports as a supplemental strategy for their students who are beginning to use AAC. Enjoy!   :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::   Using Visual Sidekicks to Support Language Intervention   Have you ever tried to read a book to your students without providing any visual supports? Do you find yourself having difficulty thinking about what questions to ask? Do you ever feel like the story is too “wordy” or difficult for your students to understand? Have no fear, Visual Sidekicks are here! Visual Sidekicks provide a color-coded communication board of target core and fringe vocabulary along with sentences of 3-5 symbols that simplify the text throughout the story. Children with special needs often demonstrate difficulties during structured literacy activities in the following areas: attending to... [Read More...]

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Video of the Week: From Referential to Descriptive Teaching with AAC Learners

April 25, 2018 by - Leave your thoughts

Video of the Week: From Referential to Descriptive Teaching with AAC Learners

When working with AAC learners, how can we best model and elicit target communication behaviors? In today’s featured video, SLP Deborah Witkowski provides an overview of the ways that we can shift our approach from one that prioritizes activity-specific words, to one that emphasizes high-frequency words. If you are looking to  grow your skills in implementing AAC, this video will provide lots of helpful information. Many thanks to the Colorado Department of Education’s Southwest AT and AAC project (SWAAAC) for making this available. Direct Link to Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R70CfxnD4yY

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Expanding AAC Learners’ Single Word Utterances

March 5, 2018 by - Leave your thoughts

Expanding AAC Learners’ Single Word Utterances

Know any learners like these? Jacob takes his teacher over to the snack cupboard and uses his SGD to say ‘cracker.’ Mara watches her friend throw a book and signs ‘angry.’ Elisheva finishes her drink and uses a communication book to say ‘more’ Some AAC learners linger at the single word level for far longer than they need to. One of the strategies that we use to help them move forward is to expand on their utterance and build on their word to model a 2-word sentence. ‘Cracker’ becomes ‘Want cracker.’ ‘Angry’ is built into ‘Shoshana’s angry.’ ‘More’ turns into ‘more milk.’ Sounds simple, right? Well, the concept certainly is, but it’s easy to get stuck or draw a blank when trying to do these sorts of expansions in therapy sessions, classroom activities, or daily routines. If you find your team forgetting to expand the learners’ single word utterances, some examples... [Read More...]

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Building Linguistic Competence in AAC Learners: 3 Areas to Consider Targeting

January 18, 2018 by - Leave your thoughts

Building Linguistic Competence in AAC Learners: 3 Areas to Consider Targeting

For several years, those who specialize in supporting AAC learners have stressed the need to develop AAC systems and programming that go beyond the communicative function of requesting in order to target the ability to protest, reject, comment, etc. This has been an important trend that will empower users of AAC to express themselves in much fuller ways. What other things should we be targeting in order to help our clients and students become more linguistically competent? Here are some ideas for goal areas to consider. Temporal Markers: While no one can overstate the importance of talking about our current needs, interests, observations, and preferences, we have to be careful not to get stuck in the moment. It is also important for our AAC learners to develop the language skills to be able to talk about things that already happened or that will/might be happening. Why? Among other things, this... [Read More...]

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Video of the Week: Building Linguistic Fluency with AAC Learners

March 16, 2016 by - Leave your thoughts

AAC learners often require a good deal of practice to become fluent enough with their language skills that they use them spontaneously across activities and environments. In this week’s featured video, we take a peek at Katya, who is learning to speak in longer sentences and to change singular nouns into plurals, and her SLP. The guided practice allows Katya to firm up her skills in these areas and develop the fluency she needs to be able to retrieve language during ordinary life experiences. Many thanks to Lindsey Cargill and Katya for posting this video.  

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Efficiency or Precision? Striking a Balance for AAC Learners

February 16, 2016 by - 3 Comments

Efficiency or Precision? Striking a Balance for AAC Learners

Elliott has been using some form of high tech AAC since he was in kindergarten and can express wants/needs easily. Though his language is simplistic compared to his 5th grade peers, he is able to use his SGD to give opinions, explain them, ask questions, engage in small talk, and tell short narratives. His SLP has targeted skills in inferencing, use of prefixes (‘un’ and ‘re’), verbal reasoning, Tier 2 vocabulary, and embedded clauses to help Elliott acquire the language skills that will allow him to be more successful in his academic work. She is keenly aware that, as he transitions to middle school, the academic and social demands on him will increase significantly. Although Elliott can spontaneously produce 9-12 word sentences, he usually communicates in short, simple utterances. In a recent interaction he used a single word, ‘good,’ to describe a video, and a short sentence (‘I was mad’)... [Read More...]

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Supporting Language Growth in AAC Learners: Part 3

December 7, 2015 by - Leave your thoughts

Supporting Language Growth in AAC Learners: Part 3

In some earlier posts, we looked at conversations with AAC learners who communicate with single words or short utterances, and began thinking about ways to stretch their language learning. In this post, we’ll continue to explore ways in which our intervention can facilitate language growth. Let’s start with an example of a typical conversation between an AAC learner and his/her therapist. Activity: Book reading [with aided language input] SLP: Look at all these animals! [Expectant pause]  Marcus: Bird.   SLP: Yes, lots of birds there. Those are seagulls. What else do you see? Marcus: Fish. SLP: It looks like a fish. That’s a dolphin. Dolphins are mammals. Remember from Ms. Louis’s class when you read Day of the Dolphins? Marcus: Swim SLP: Yes, they are really good swimmers. From the standpoint of shared meaning, this conversation has some good features. But even just reading the dialogue online, I bet you... [Read More...]

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