Month: August 2008

The Essence of Therapy With Little Kids

By Shanti McGinley

Q: Our son is three and was non-verbal. Our SLP seems really good at helping him learn to talk. But he is very hard to understand. What can we do? The essence of speech therapy for little children is to learn about words and sounds. We need to focus on both when working with young children. Many of today’s younger therapists put all their focus on building vocabulary, and they spend very little time focused on the actual production of…

Is a Diagnosis of Apraxia Necessary for Therapy?

By Shanti McGinley

Q: Is it necessary to get a diagnosis of apraxia with a young child who does not talk, or can we just proceed with therapy? The answer to that depends upon the rules and regulations of your treatment center or school, and whether or not insurance providers are involved. But in my opinion, as far as the actual therapy is concerned, you do not need a diagnosis to start. Just start. Time in treatment will tell you increasingly more about…

Sound-Activated Toys

By Shanti McGinley

Q: I was listening to your audio tape called Apraxia Uncovered and heard you say that voice-activated toys are great for getting children to vocalize. Where can I find these? I know of no speech company that is selling these toys now, but I searched online and found many for sale at various venues. Some are overpriced, but if you take the time to look around online, I am sure you will find at least one at a reasonable price….

Counseling Parents About Articulation Deficit

By Shanti McGinley

Q: What do you tell parents when they ask what caused their child’s articulation disorder? First I draw whatever conclusions I can from the child’s medical and physical history. For example, I explain how the child’s errors might be related to his positive history of ear infections, oral injury, structural deficit, neuromuscular disorder, sensorimotor dysfunction, and so forth. Second, I draw conclusions from information I have about the client’s cognitive level. For example if the client is four-years-old, but he…

Teaching “Sh”

By Shanti McGinley

Q: Do you have any techniques for teaching Sh for a client who can do a correct S? There are several easy things that usually work well if the client already can do an S. Use a Sequence: Have him make an S, and then slide into a whispered (voiceless) Y. Then have him do the same thing with the lips rounded. The sound of Sh often will be heard during the transition between the two sounds if the client…