I don’t know about you, but I sure wish I could
be in sunny Orlando right now! While
I unfortunately can’t bring you some nice, warm sunshine, what I – and several
of my other wonderful blogger friends – can provide you are some therapy ideas
and nuggets of wisdom!
make sure to hop through each blog in order.
Keep track of the letters on each post, because you’ll be able to enter
them at the end for an awesome prize package!
(Keep in mind, the hop and giveaway close at Saturday, November 22 at
11:59 pm EST.)
pathologist, I have a simple piece of advice: listen.
communicators, right? Get a group of us
together, and we can talk for hours. We also
talk with our students constantly, guiding them and teaching them new skills. We feel like if we aren’t talking, we aren’t
doing our jobs. Do we know that listening is an important part of communication? Sure we do! But things can get so busy and hectic in our every day jobs, it’s easy to forget to take the time to do so.
back and LISTEN to what your
students need to say. Did you ever stop
to think that you, as their SLP, may be the only adult that day to spend
one-on-one time with him or her?
students for each session. Yes, our
elementary building is huge, and my pedometer says I average about 4 miles a
day walking up and down the hallways each school day. It can take up to 5 minutes to get from the
furthest wing of my building back to my speech room, depending on how crowded
the hallway is. But I consider this time
a valuable therapy asset to get to know my students better. I ask how they are doing, and what has
happened since the last time I saw them – and then I listen. Most of my students
love having that individualized attention, and I learn valuable information
about their lives.
teaching to your students’ prior knowledge and experience, you have a much
higher likelihood of making those concepts stick. If you take the time to listen to your students and what is going on in their lives, you
have a better picture of what prior knowledge they might have.
to activate their prior knowledge, listening
to your students is also important in identifying underlying problems that
might be going on in a particular child’s life.
Honestly, some students might have so much going on, that producing
their R sound correctly is the last thing on their minds!
with a student for a while, you can generally get a feel for when they aren’t
feeling well, or something is bothering them.
If there is something bigger going on, there is no way you are going to
have a productive therapy session. Sometimes,
you have to listen to what your gut
is telling you, throw the therapy plan out the window, and listen. Ask the student what
is wrong, or keep him/her behind when you send the other students back to their
classroom. Maybe a classmate is making
fun of them, or their allergies kept them up all last night, or they just failed
a test. Maybe their parents are going
through a divorce, or maybe they are worried if they will have a place to sleep
everything that is going on in that child’s life, but if you take the time to listen and earn their trust, your
therapy will be much more effective in the long run. Sometimes, you can do something about the
problem, like talk to the child’s teacher, or call home. But sometimes, all you can do is listen, and
tell the child, “I am so sorry that you are going through this right now. I can’t fix that for you, but you know
what? I am on your side.”
time this week and truly listen to your students. I guarantee, it will be worth it in the long