What happens in therapy?
The aim of therapy is to ensure your child’s communication skills are age appropriate and that they reach their communicative potential. Therapy tasks need to be realistic and achievable for a child to learn. Therapy begins at a level where a child can feel some sense of success and works from there. Like any skill, improvement is seen with practise so you will be given some tasks to work on at home between sessions. As you will observe the sessions and take part in therapy you should have a good understanding of how to do the home practise.
When working on speech sounds, therapy is not about the time spent on the task, but the frequency of practise. Five to ten minutes a day spent on practise is far more productive than thirty minutes once a week.
When working on your child’s language, therapy may look very different. Language work can range from worksheets, to book sharing, to computer or Ipad activities, to playing games, to role plays with puppets, to play sessions, to singing, to using a communication device, or assistive software for literacy, to writing or telling stories together or to following directions of increasing length and complexity. How the session looks will depend upon the language goals for your particular child. If you are not sure of what your therapy goal is, ask Lynne as many times as you need. Keep asking until you have really understood what the aim of therapy is, and how you are going to implement home practise between sessions, so you can gain the most value from therapy.
Therapy is a partnership between you and your child and your Speech Pathologist. To gain the most out of therapy we need to work together. Parents understand their children best. Speech Pathologists understand speech and language and how to select therapy targets. How these tasks are implemented is a very individual process, which can be determined by understanding your child’s likes, interests and in what settings he/she is most responsive. As you know your child best, achieving a good match between task and your child involves working in partnership with Lynne.
Most of all therapy should involve as much fun and success as possible for both you and your child. That way you will both be motivated to continue your practise until the communication goal you and Lynne have set for your child is reached.