Heather Mason

Schaal Physical Therapy and Fitness Center

Credentials: MS, CCC-SLP
Hours of Operation: Monday - Friday 8:00 - 5:30
Treatment locations: Office/Clinic
942 Rose Ave
Burlington, Colorado 80807
Phone: (719) 346-6050
Email: heathernmason@gmail.com

Overall Treatment Approach:
   Therapy with kids who have a diagnosis of CAS is ever-changing. After assessing their sound inventory and syllable shapes, I'd work with the parents to create a meaningful target list using what the child already has. Research tells us that when introducing a novel task, during the acquisition phase, mass practice is best. Once the target is mastered, then I'd shift to a distributed practice for retention of the motor plan. If introducing a new sound, I'd focus on syllable shapes that the child already has mastered. If I'm looking to expand syllable shapes, I'd focus on sounds that have been mastered. Feedback is crucial; however, I believe that all kids respond differently to feedback. I'd monitor resilience of given feedback to ensure that the child does not shut-down, but rather keep pushing forward. If KP feedback works better for the child, then I'll use KP and if KR seems to provide better results, then I'll use KR. I'm aware that KR is better once task is acquired, but being mindful of the individual and what pushes them toward success is my main focus. Every child is different, but my goal is to determine what is the least amount of cueing I can provide, that will help to build success. If that is DTTC, PROMPT (was scheduled for Intro course in December, but was just cancelled due to low registration), or ReST, that is the methodology I'll use. My number one priority is to provide a source for communication for these kids; if it's sign, verbal output, AAC, someway to allow them to communicate is where I start. And education for parents. Lots and lots of education. When parents are onboard, and able to put in the time, wonderful things can happen.

Percent of CAS cases: 10

Parent Involvement:
   I think its imperative that parents are involved in the therapy process. From the beginning, I rely on parent input from the intake form and preference form. I want to know what do they see at home. What are the hardest areas for them to navigate, so that together, we can come to a solution. I want them to understand what I'm doing and why. The why part is important, so my focus is to make it as lay as possible, while also being open to the many questions that parents will have. When possible, I'd like the parents in the therapy room, watching and learning. While it's important for parents to be a part of their child's therapy, it's also important for them to follow the clinicians lead. Pushing for more, when the child isn't ready, may cause frustration, melt-downs, and even bad habits (SCHWA!). But they're important and being the parent to a child with CAS is a hard job. Although the child is the main focus in therapy, it often feels like the therapy is for the entire family. Validation of the parents emotions and providing the support necessary to get them through the hard times is also a part of my therapy.

Community Involvement:
   I'm an SLP, but also a mother to a preschooler who has CAS. It has been a wild ride; one that I wouldn't choose to ride again if given the option, but because of this diagnosis I have learned so much about myself through her. And I've seen resiliency like I've never seen before, in the face of a three year old. She is so much of what I wish I was.. Since her diagnosis, I've made it my mission to learn as much as I can, to not only help my daughter, but to help other parents who are looking for someone to help their child. I hope to be a source of light and calm for these families. We've walked this walk and I understand the emotions. I want to be a resource for the school systems in Eastern Colorado and Western Kansas and provide private therapy when the schools aren't enough. Educating other therapists is a priority of mine as well as advocating for these kids in the community and the school system.

Professional consultation/collaboration: Yes

Min Age Treated:

Max Age Treated:

Insurance Accepted: Yes