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July 8, 2011
Issue 21, Volume 5
It's All About the Choices!     
Hello and Happy Friday!  

Hope everyone had a happy and safe holiday.   Please enjoy our weekly newsletter offering.
News Items: 
  • Preschool Male to Female Data on Stuttering
  • Models with Down Syndrome Ready for Work  
  • From the Archives: Selective Mutism on 20/20  
  • Smartphone App Helps Coaches Evaluate Concussions 
  • Bilingualism in the New York Times  
  • Speaking Through Computers 
Therapy Activities, Tips and Resources
  • Cootie Catchers for Fine Motor Skills 
  • Book Review -  The Active Imagination Activity Book - 50 Sensorimotor Activities to Improve Focus, Attention, Strength & Coordination
  • Hand, Shoulder, Elbow Then Pencils

Articles and Blogs

  • Guest Blog: SLPs Are Full of Awesome 
  • Guest Blog: Who Do We Ask When We Don't Know Which Way to Go?  
  • Pediatric Therapy Corner: The Importance of Parent Involvement in the Speech Therapy Process   
  • Worth Repeating: Use of Sensory Diet in Children with Sensory Processing Difficulties
  • Also Worth Repeating: All About Drooling                                                           
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Have a great weekend and Take Care!

Heidi Kay and the PediaStaff Team

The Career Center

The links to the right are "live" and reflect the most recent SLP, OT, PT and related assistant jobs, and ALL our Bilingual and School Psychology Jobs. 
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Stuttering in the News:  Preschool Male to Female Data on Stuttering
[Source:  The Stuttering Foundation]

Over the last several years, the Stuttering Foundation has kept accurate data on the calls it has received from concerned parents of 13,184 preschool children who are reported to be stuttering.

The number of enquiries rises sharply at 3 years of age and then lessens for children aged 4 and then further reduces for children aged 5 years.
Across all ages, we receive more enquiries from parents of boys than we do of girls, reflecting what we know - that more boys stutter than girls (Bloodstein, 1995; Yairi, 2005).

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog

Feel Good Story of the Week:  Models with Down Syndrome Ready for Work 
Editor's Note:  We realize this article came out in March, but as it has just now come to our attention, we thought we'd share it!

[Source:  The Independent of Ireland]

The first model agency representing people with Down syndrome was launched in Ireland to coincide with World Down Syndrome Day.


Some 20 people were selected, aged five to 33, after experts in the business rated their self-confidence in front of the camera.    They will be available for photo shoots, advertising, catalogues and catwalk shows as part of the I'm Able 2 Model venture, and will be paid similar fees to other models.


Sheila Campbell, chief executive of the Down Syndrome Centre, said people with the disability needed to be better represented.   "For many of us, the experience of interacting with a person with Down syndrome has been increasingly normalised in recent times," Ms Campbell said.


Read the Rest of this Article and Visit the 'I'm Able 2 Model' Website Through a Link on our Blog
From the Archives:  Selective Mutism on 20/20 
Editor's Note: Here is a video on Selective Mutism that aired on the new magazine show '20/20' a while back that we found in the news archives. We thought it would be worth sharing with you.

Watch this Story on Selective Mutism on our Blog

Pediatric TBI in the News: Smartphone App Helps Coaches Evaluate Concussions
[Source: NewsObserver.com]

High school coaches in North Carolina are supposed to remove players from practice or games if they are suspected of having had a concussion. The players are not to return until after being cleared by a medical professional.

A new smartphone application should help coaches at all levels make informed decisions about whether a player has received a brain injury and needs to sit out. The app provides a way to evaluate signs and symptoms of a concussion, suggests an immediate course of action, stores data and even emails the evaluation to physicians, trainers, school officials, care givers or others.

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog

Bilingualism in the News: Interview with Cognitive Neuroscientist, Ellen Bialystok in the New York Times   
[Source: The New York Times]

By Claudia Dreifus

A cognitive neuroscientist, Ellen Bialystok has spent almost 40 years learning about how bilingualism sharpens the mind. Her good news: Among other benefits, the regular use of two languages appears to delay the onset of Alzheimer's disease symptoms. Dr. Bialystok, 62, a distinguished research professor of psychology at York University in Toronto, was awarded a $100,000 Killam Prize last year for her contributions to social science. We spoke for two hours in a Washington hotel room in February and again, more recently, by telephone. An edited version of the two conversations follows.


Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog
Assistive Technology/AAC in the News: Speaking Through Computers
[Source NBC]

Whether it's due to autism or a physical impairment, there are many people who simply can't speak.

But that doesn't mean they can't learn to communicate.

When you think of speech therapy, what probably comes to mind is verbal skills

"Articulation therapy, how you physically produce sounds, is one area in speech language therapy that I think is the best known," says Valerie Rodriguez-Adhikari, a speech therapist with Lee Memorial Health System.


Read the Rest of This Article and the Video Story Through a Link on our Blog
Therapy Activity of the Week: Cootie Catchers for Fine Motor Skills
Special Thanks to Therapy Fun Zone for this Activity of the Week. Please support our contributors and visit Therapy Fun Zone

Any square piece of paper can be made into a Cootie Catcher.

Check out this Great Therapy Idea on our Blog
Book Review: The Active Imagination Activity Book - 50 Sensorimotor Activities to Improve Focus, Attention, Strength & Coordination

Book by: Kelly Tilley
Reviewed By: Barbara Smith, M.S., OTR/L
Published By: Sensory World

Just when you think you have read about, seen or used every sensorimotor activity on the planet, along comes a gem that fills a niche. Active Imagination Activity book by occupational therapist Kelly Tilley is easy to follow and use, small, light and compact to fit in the therapists travel bag and a helpful tool for home programs. The thin plastic pages and cardboard jacket designed to fold into an easel format make turning pages, reading and viewing pictures convenient.

Parents will find it easy to help their children perform the 50 sensorimotor exercises disguised as games. Tilley does a nice job of explaining the basics of sensory tools without getting technical and children will enjoy the colorful illustrations. However, although the pictures are a definite plus, there are one are two that are confusing. Does the child holding the praying mantis position (page 12) have his knee on or off the ground and the child who is supposed to be lifting a beanbag with both feet (page 45) looks like he is using one foot. Regardless, of these possible minor interpretation glitches, the activity ideas are fantastic.

Read the Rest of this Review on our Blog
Therapy Resource of the Week: Hand, Shoulder, Elbow Then Pencils 
Special Thanks to our friends at SensoryFlow.com for permission to reprint this excellent video! Please support our contributors and visit SensoryFlow.com

Pediatric Occupational Therapist, John Murray, demonstrates how to incorporate gross motor involvement in preparing to write.  It takes not only the small motor planning of all the small muscles of the hands, many children involve their elbows and even shoulders.  Here is a simple and fun way to work those systems, integrate the sensory writing, and get the mind to blend all the extrinsic and intrinsic activities that need to happen to use a pencil.

Watch this Video on our Blog
Guest Blogs This Week: Lexical Linguist, Speech Savvy   
SLPs Are Full of Awesome - By:  Tanya Coyle, CCC-SLP

awesome [aw-suhm] /'?s?m/ -adjective
inspiring awe: an awesome sight.showing or characterized by awe.Slang . very impressive: That new assessment tool is totally awesome.

There's this book I've been meaning to read for about a year now. I think this summer will be the time. Maybe you've heard of it, maybe you haven't. It's called The Book of Awesome, by Neil Pasricha. Here is a link to his inspirational TedxToronto talk (I just found out he's Canadian too!) about why he started his blog, 1000AwesomeThings.com, and later wrote his book(s).

Lately work has been really difficult for the entire team I work with. We've had an increase in referrals but no increase in staff plus this is the fourth year that the SLPs on the team have been only doing assessments and follow-up and not doing therapy anymore. When you're not doing therapy, it's a lot harder to feel like you're making a difference or to feel effective in your job. It's not that we AREN'T effective or not making a difference - of course we are. But we lose sight of that somewhere along the way in desperately trying to keep up and provide quality service to the students and teachers we support.


Read the Rest of this Article on our Blog
Who Do We Ask When We Don't Know Which Way to Go? - By:  Kelly Ring-Whiklo, M.Sc., S-LP ( C )  

Whether you are planning a trip this summer or staying close to home, are lots of ways to use maps to develop communication skills.

The age of your child, their interests, and the activities you are planning will help you decide what kinds of maps will work best. For younger children very simple maps with pictures and a few details are best. Older children will enjoy maps with more detail and information.

Here are a few ideas of different maps you can buy, get free and/or online, or make:

Read the Rest of this Guest Post on our Blog

Pediatric Therapy Corner: The Importance of Parent Involvement in the Speech Therapy Process
By: Ruth Stoeckel, Ph.D., CCC-SLP

When a child is diagnosed with a speech problem such as CAS, their parents enter a world of therapists and services that is new and unfamiliar to most of them. The process of evaluation and development of an intervention plan can be intimidating. It may be tempting for parents to rely on the therapist to "fix" the problem. However, when parents make an effort to understand their child's diagnosis and become active participants in the intervention process, there are benefits not just for the child but for the parents and therapists as well.

Therapy for CAS is intensive and requires focus and participation on the part of both child and therapist. Parents can share information with the therapist about the child's personality and preferences that can be used to motivate the child. They can help the therapist understand how the child responds in frustrating situations and how they manage challenging behaviors at home. This information can help the therapist and parents provide consistency in working with the child in therapy sessions and at home.

Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

Worth Repeating: - Use of Sensory Diet in Children with Sensory Processing Difficulties
[Source:  Cincinnati Children's Hospital]

  1. It is recommended that the occupational therapist collaborate with the caregivers regarding the child's daily routine prior to creating an individualized sensory diet (see handout: Schedule of My Child's Day) (Local Consensus [5]).
  2. It is recommended that, in addition to direct occupational therapy services, a planned sensory diet be individualized for the child's unique sensory processing needs, and include:
  • consideration of timing, duration and intensity of the activities when choosing appropriate sensory activities (Wilbarger 2002 [5]),
  • planned, scheduled activities implemented throughout the day (Wilbarger 2008 [5], Cronin 2007 [5], Nackely 2001 [5], Parham 2001 [5], Local Consensus [5]), and
  • alerting, calming, and organizing activities based on the arousal level of the child (Cronin 2007 [5], Wilbarger 2002 [5], Yack 2002 [5], Parham 2001 [5]).

    Note: Implement a sensory diet prior to considering a deep pressure proprioceptive protocol1 (Wilbarger 2008 [5]).   
Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog

Also Worth Repeating - All About Drooling
by:  Thaashida L. Hutton, M.S., CCC-SLP

Editor's Note: Thank you to Judith Kuster of MSU for calling our attention to this handout that we might share the link with you here.

[Source: Super Duper.com]

The salivary glands in our mouth produce s much as 2-3 pints of saliva every day. We just swallow regularly to prevent any extra saliva from slipping out of our mouths or from seeping into our airway. If saliva seeps into the airway, our natural reaction is to gag and cough.      

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link on our Blog
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