Is the PROMPT approach effective?

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Yay! We are back to blogging about research. You can check out what research says about other speech and language related topics over at Gray Matter Therapy. The blogger does an awesome job of rounding up speech pathologists around the nation to read research and blog about it.

This month I, along with other therapists from our office, are going through the big PROMPT training. While I hear so many good things about the use of this technique in therapy, I really wanted to know what research says about it.

PROMPT stands for Prompts for Restructuring Oral Muscular Phonetic Targets. PROMPT combines auditory input and visual cues with a tactile kinesthetic approach to therapy. So in addition to hearing and seeing, the therapists actually touches the client’s face in order to guide them to their target sound, word, or phrase. You can learn more details about PROMPT at their website.

Here is some research that I found related to PROMPT.

Dale, P. and Hayden, D. (2013) Treating Speech Subsystems in Childhood Apraxia of Speech With Tactile Input: The PROMPT APPROACH. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 644-661.
These researchers examined the effects of using PROMPT with children with childhood apraxia of speech. Childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) is a speech sound disorder involving the planning and programming of movements required for speech sounds. These children are very difficult to understand.
Participants and Method: Four children who had been diagnosed with CAS were divided into two groups. Two of the children received eight weeks of full PROMPT. Two of the children received four weeks of PROMPT techniques without tactile kinesthetic prompts then four weeks of full PROMPT. Target words were chosen for each child. Standardized tests and untrained probe words were used for assessing progress.
Results: All children in the study showed significant improvement in the 16 weeks of intervention. Scores on the untreated probe words and on the articulation test showed some evidence that including the tactile kinesthetic cues results in more success.

Grigos, M., Hayden, D., and Eigen, J. (2010). Perceptual and Articulatory Changes in Speech Production Following PROMPT Treatment. Journal of Medical Speech-Language Pathology, 18, 46-53.
This study was to determine whether speech sound accuracy changed after PROMPT treatment.
Participants and Method: Two three year old males were participants in this study. One was a typically developing 3 year old was assessed. The other child had a speech disorder and received PROMPT treatment twice a week for eight weeks. This study differed in the first discussed in that, in addition to formal testing and untrained probe words, they used a motion capture system to receive a visual of the child’s articulatory movements.
Results: Pre-treatment, the child with speech disorder displayed severe deficits on an articulation assessment. He also demonstrated inappropriate oral motor behaviors. Results of this study indicated improvements in both articulatory movements and speech sound accuracy.

Other research about using PROMPT has been published regarding children with cerebral palsy and autism. You can also find research on the effects of using PROMPT on adults with aphasia and apraxia as well.

Summer Camps at Capital Area Speech

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We are very excited to offer fun, engaging summer camps for our little ones this year at our office in Austin. Our camps will be led by a speech and/or occupational therapist. While our therapists will be incorporating skills to improve specific areas of language and motor skills, these camps are intended for any child. Check out the details below.

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Open Gym (with Ms Farah and Ms Kelsi)
ALL AGES
Wednesdays, June 4 – August 26, 2014
10:00-11:30 am
This therapist guided play time allows your child to experience new fine and gross motor activities while exploring our new sensory gym.

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Cooking with Words (with Ms. Noelle and Ms. Kelsi)
AGES 5-8
June 16-19, 3:00-5:00 pm
This speech and occupational therapist led camp will inspire little minds with fun themes that involve daily cooking or food preparation activites. The therapists will work on expanding your child’s skills in the following areas:
-vocabulary
-following directions
-social skills
-sequencing
-memory

Handwriting Camp (with Ms. Farah and Ms. Kelsi)
AGES 5 and up
July 7-10, 1:00-3:00 pm
This interactive camp turns handwriting into a fun multisensory experience by focusing on the whole body. Therapists guide children through engaging activities to improve:
-gross motor skills
-fine motor skills
-eye hand coordination
-visual perceptual skills

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Experimenting with Language (with Ms Noelle and Ms Kelsi)
AGES 5-8
July 14-17, 10:00 am-12:00 pm
This camp will encourage curiosity with exciting science experiments. Through this camp our therapists will work on expanding your child’s skills in the following areas:
-literacy and vocabulary
-critical thinking
-following directions
-social skills

These camps do have limited availability. Call or email us today for pricing information and sign up. Ask about a sibling discount if you’d like to sign up more than one child.

512-250-8706
n_mcneil@capitalareaspeech.com

Free Apps For Autism Awareness

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For Autism Awareness, I wanted to share some free educational and special needs apps. There are tons of free or discounted educational/special needs apps today and this week. I haven’t used all of these apps so I can’t go into detail about them. They are worth checking out though. Some of these are only free today so check them out as soon as you can.
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Here is a list of the ones I do use and love:
The following two I use for working on following directions, listening skills, and concepts.
Fun With Directions Lite
More Fun With Directions Lite
Picture the Sentence Lite – This app is great for kids to practice listening and picturing what they heard.
The next two apps are great for social language.
Between the Lines Level 1 Lite
Between the Lines Level 2 Lite
Toca Band – Okay I just downloaded this app today. I LOVE every Toca Boca app I’ve ever downloaded! They are very motivational.
Speech With Milo: Verbs – I use this app in therapy quite often.
Rainbow Sentences – This app is a GREAT app for working on formulating sentences correctly, describing pictures, and imitating sentences. only $3.99 today

These apps I haven’t used but they look like they would be useful.
Functional Communication System
Functional Planning System
Picture Card – Can You Do It?
Sorthings For Autism
Discovering Emotions With Zeely
EZCOMMA – This one is probably best for older kids working on grammar.
Sequences For Autism
Sequences For Kids
Feed Maxi – $.99 I have heard only great things about this one.
Conversation Builder – only $3.99 today
Talk + Touch
Sound Swaps – $4.99 This app is good for children with dyslexia or those working on phonological awareness.
Social Stories – $.99
Visual Routine – $.99
Starring Me On Wheels On The Bus

These are stories for teaching good morals or habits:
Even Monsters Get Sick – $.99
Axel’s Chain Reaction – FREE
Listen Up Bear – FREE
Sheldon’s Adventure – Cornered! – FREE
Sheldon’s Adventures – FREE
The Terrible Taunting – FREE – This interactive book teaches that everyone is special in their own way.

These would be great for fine motor activities:
Cursive Touch and Write – $.99
Wood Puzzle Maze – FREE

Thank you to Mary and Smart Apps For Special Needs for sharing some of these apps on twitter and your blog.

The ladies over at Smart Apps For Special Needs compile wonderful lists of free and discounted apps every week. I highly recommend you check out their blog and follow them on Twitter.

If you have any apps you love to use at home or in therapy please leave a comment to share with everyone!

What is Sensory Processing Disorder?

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Here’s a story about “Johnny.” It’s morning! Time to get up and get the kids ready for school. While this can be difficult for many kids, it can be especially difficult for a child with Sensory Processing Disorder. Getting out of bed is the first challenge. Mom gently shakes him, talks to him softly, pulls down the covers. But it is hard for him to get going; he does not want to leave his bed. It takes quite some time, but eventually she rouses him. In the bathroom other roadblocks occur: washing his face, brushing his teeth, getting in the bath. Often the water feels either too hot or too cold, the water splashing against his face really bothers him, and the brush feels uncomfortable. Some days the bathroom can be a bit of a battle. Getting dressed can be challenging too. Clothing with tags or tight seams really irritates him, and socks are the worst! After he is clean and dressed, it’s time for breakfast; but this is hard for Johnny too. He tries, but some foods he just can’t stand the smell of, and others he refuses on sight. Fruit, oatmeal, and eggs are out of the question. He ends up having the same thing he’s had for the last three weeks – a few bites of dry waffle. Mom doesn’t push it, because she doesn’t want him to be upset before heading to school. Eventually they leave the house and it’s off to school. Johnny is calm and happy and ready for school, but mom worries about what the day will bring, because even a slight change in his routine at school can affect his whole day.

Does any part of this sound familiar? Kiddos with Sensory Processing Disorder have difficulty registering or tolerating different kinds of sensory information, such as touch/textures, sounds, smells, light/visual stimuli, movement, and even information from their own bodies telling them where they are in relation to others. Because of these challenges, they may seek and/or avoid different kinds of sensory input. For example, one child may be overly sensitive when it comes to textures, avoiding certain materials and messier activities, while another may constantly touch things, to the point of being inappropriate or irritating to others. Some children become extremely and inconsolably distressed by certain sounds, such as a car horn, vacuum, or even other children playing, while others (or even the same child) may not register typical sounds such as his/her name being called repeatedly. Some children may seek out lots of movement by running or spinning or constantly moving around the room, while others may be afraid to sit on a swing or climb on a play structure. Because they are working overtime trying to manage their sensory needs throughout the day, these children can often become very easily frustrated or sad, as they exhaust their resources for tolerating life’s occurrences much faster than children who do not have these challenges.

If you notice any of these challenges in your little ones, an occupational therapist can work with you and your children to figure out their specific sensory needs, and how to help them integrate these sensations and tolerate experiences more easily.

Take a look at these websites for some great information about SPD:
www.spdfoundation.net/about-sensory-processing-disorder.html
www.sensory-processing-disorder.com
lemonlimeadventures.com/sensory-processing/#_a5y_p=1260983

written by the occupational therapists at Capital Area Speech

World Down Syndrome Day

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Today is a special day that we can help to raise public awareness and advocate for people with Down syndrome. World Down Syndrome Day is recognized on March 21 to symbolize the the extra 21st chromosome which causes Down syndrome.

Ways to support people with down syndrome:
Join you local buddy walk
Support a local nonprofit organization
Support Ruby’s Rainbow and help young people with Down syndrome fulfill their dreams
Wear lots of socks on World Down Syndrome Day!
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Great blogs about Down syndrome:
Ellie’s Gift I love the blog post about how to teach young children about Down syndrome.
Down to Life
Noah’s Dad
Dear Tessa
There are many other blogs out there written by parents and other families members specific to Down syndrome.

For more information please visit the following websites:
Down Syndrome Association of Central Texas
Down Syndrome International
National Down Syndrome Society

What Does An Occupational Therapist Do?

Our OTs Miss Farah and Miss Kelsi put together this informative brochure about occupational therapy.
Occupational Therapy Services
Thank you Farah and Kelsi!