Did you know that National Speech Language Pathologist day is May 18?
To be perfectly honest, after extensive googling, I cannot find anything about the origins of this holiday, other than a few sources that state that it started in 2010, but no links or further information to back this up.
Personally, what I think may have happened was that perhaps an individual speech-language pathologist got tired of all the other professions having a specific holiday, picked a date during Better Hearing and Speech Month in May, and started spreading the word.
Whatever the origins, I am all for celebrating my fellow SLPs! 🙂
Not many people actually know that this is a holiday, but I think it is worth sharing the news! Now, you might feel like it is a little like bringing a cake for yourself on your birthday… but who else would know it is your birthday if you didn’t tell them?
If I could make a wish for National SLP Day, I would wish for more people to know what my title is, and some of the things I actually do in the school setting!
For the record:
SLP stands for speech-language pathologist, and we are experts in communication.
Communication disorders impact everyone. If you think about people in your own life, you probably know someone with hearing loss, a history of stroke, autism, voice problems, speech sound errors, traumatic brain injury, or trouble with chewing and swallowing. These all fall under the speech-language pathology umbrella. While many of us work in the school setting, you’ll also find SLPs who work in outpatient clinics, hospitals, rehab facilities, and nursing homes.
SLPs work on many different areas of communication with students. In the school setting, this might include:
- Helping students learn to pronounce sounds correctly (such as the R sound, or making sure the student says the final sounds in words)
- Increasing students’ vocabulary knowledge and usage
- Helping students learn what words to use in what order, and when to say them
- Helping students with limited verbal output find ways to communicate (such as by using a computerized device or a picture system)
- Helping students that stutter make their speech more fluent
- Helping students that have difficulty with comprehension or answering questions
- Helping students learn the unspoken social rules of communication
- Helping students that struggle with getting their thoughts out in a coherent fashion, whether verbally or in writing
- Helping students understand relationships between words and concepts (including such skills as comparing/contrasting, describing, defining, summarizing, etc.)
If you would like to spread the word, please feel free to share the link to this blog post or share the images here!
I also created a one-page handout that is free here.
Looking for more in-depth handouts? Check out this set that explain just what it is that SLPs do in the school setting here.
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