Esteem vs. Rappprt

By Pam Marshalla

What is the first most important goal of speech-language therapy?

This question came up at a workshop recently. One seminar member answered, “Build the child’s self esteem.” This is not correct.

The first most important goal of therapy is to establish rapport with the client. All the old-time speech-language textbooks taught this. Establish a trusting relationship between yourself and the child early in therapy, and continue to build this relationship as therapy progresses. If the child doesn’t trust or like you, he won’t take to therapy, no matter what he thinks about himself.

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