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- Virginia Beach, Virginia
- Play by the Bay Therapy
The most important part of preparing for a therapy session is choosing activities and targets that are motivating to the individual child. For a child with moderate to severe CAS, I usually have 1-3 target words (that were developed in collaboration with the child's parents based on initial testing results) I'm focusing on in each session. I try to select activities that will elicit a high number of repetitions (e.g., if our target word is "on," we might practice turning "on" a bubble machine that sends bubbles high up in the air as many times as we can; if our word is "key", we might practice opening and closing several different doors on a pretend animal clinic saying the word "key" each time we open a door). If the session feels like play, then the child is more engaged (and motivated!) to produce their target words. I also try to incorporate some form of motor play (e.g., throwing darts at a dart board, tossing bean bags into a bucket, throwing a basketball into a hoop) into every session for children who may have a harder time focusing and need "active" activities to help them persist through more focused periods of the session.
I currently follow a number of prominent apraxia community members (parents, individuals with apraxia, and therapists) on social media and have joined local apraxia groups on Facebook. I plan to continue highlighting CAS (information, awareness, support) on my business social media channels and engaging with the community online.
Parents are encouraged to observe and participate in all therapy sessions. I routinely provide carry over activities/targets for home practice to encourage generalization.
I continually incorporate high tech (e.g., Proloquo2Go via ipad) and low tech methods (e.g., Boardmaker symbol boards matched to activities/books in therapy) in sessions based on the child's needs. Parents are encouraged to carry over the child's best method of communication/language support in the home setting.