September 4, 2015
Issue 35, Volume 8
It's All About the Choices!     
Greetings and Happy Holiday

It seems were were just announcing the start of summer and here it is, Labor Day Weekend already. Hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable holiday weekend!
News Items:
  • Speech Analysis Can Predict Risk of Psychosis
  • Airlines Encouraged To Better Serve Flyers With Disabilities
  • Genes' Role In Cerebral Palsy 'Much Stronger' Than Once Thought
  • Helping Toddlers Understand Emotion Key to Development
  • Accessibility Concerns Delay $30M Amazon E-Book Contract in N.Y.C.
  • Math Skills Count for Premature Babies
Hot Jobs 
  • PediaStaff Placement of the Week: School Nurse - Washington State
  • Hot Job! Contract School Speech-Language Pathologist - Eastern Shore, VA
  • Calling All School Psychologists In or Interested in Washington State
Therapy Activities, Tips and Resources
  • App Review of the Week: Go Sequencing
  • Back to School Verbs Activity
  • Therapy Resource of the Week: OT, PT & SLP Therapy Room Printables
Articles and Special Features 
  • EI Corner: 9 Tips for Preventing Plagiocephaly
  • SLP Corner: Top 5 Parent Handouts for {Preschool} SLPs
  • OT Corner: Great Collection! 40 Free Play Dough Mats for PreSchoolers
  • Special Ed Corner: 3 Classroom Organization Hacks
  • AAC Corner: 10 Posts on AAC for Beginning Communicators
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Have a great weekend and Take Care!

Heidi Kay and the PediaStaff Team

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Speech Analysis Can Predict Risk of Psychosis
[Source:  Psych Central]
Researchers say an automated speech analysis program can determine the risk of a young person developing psychosis.
In a new study, scientists at Columbia University Medical Center, New York State Psychiatric Institute, and the IBM T. J. Watson Research Center found that a computerized analysis program correctly differentiated between at-risk young people who developed psychosis over a two and a half year period and those who did not.
Researchers say the proof-of-principle study found that the computerized analysis provided a more accurate classification than clinical ratings. The study appears in NPJ-Schizophrenia.

Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog
Airlines Encouraged To Better Serve Flyers With Disabilities
[Source:  Disability Scoop]
A new guide from the U.S. Department of Transportation is spelling out the rules air carriers must follow when dealing with travelers who have autism and other developmental disabilities.
The federal agency sent  guidance to airlines this summer detailing their responsibilities under the Air Carrier Access Act. Developed in coordination with The Arc and the Autistic Self Advocacy Network, the documentation does not lay out any new requirements, but clarifies existing rules for airlines and travelers, the agency said.

Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog
Genes' Role In Cerebral Palsy 'Much Stronger' Than Once Thought
[Source: Disability Scoop]
With new findings suggesting that genes play a significant role in cerebral palsy, researchers say that broader use of genetic testing in those with the condition may be warranted.
In a study of 115 children with cerebral palsy and their parents, researchers found that about 10 percent of these kids had copy number variations - or structural alterations to portions of their DNA - affecting genes deemed "clinically relevant" to their condition.
By comparison, scientists said that such genetic variations are found in less than 1 percent of the general population.
"Our research suggests that there is a much stronger genetic component to cerebral palsy than previously suspected," said Maryam Oskoui of McGill University in Montreal who led the  study published this month in the journal Nature Communications.

 Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog
Helping Toddlers Understand Emotion Key to Development
[Source: Medical X Press]

The simple parenting strategy of helping toddlers understand emotion may reduce behavioral problems later on, finds a federally funded study led by a Michigan State University researcher.
The study, published in the September issue of theJournal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, could ultimately help those most in need. Toddlers with higher risk, specifically those with more behavioral problems and from the most disadvantaged families, benefited most from being taught about emotion by their mothers.

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog
Accessibility Concerns Delay $30M Amazon E-Book Contract in NYC
[Source: Education Week]
New York City schools delayed a vote this week on awarding a $30 million contract to Amazon to develop an online e-book storefront for educators, after advocates for blind and visually impaired individuals raised accessibility concerns.
The National Federation of the Blind is questioning whether its community would have full accessibility in the online platform that would be built for teachers and principals to order e-books and digital content, and whether blind and visually impaired educators and students will be able to adequately use the content once it is downloaded via the Kindle file format.

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog
Math Skills Count for Premature Babies Development 
[Source:  Medical News Today]
A new study conducted by the University of Warwick links being born premature with low wages.
Researchers have identified a link between being born preterm and decreased intelligence, reading and in particular mathematical ability and have highlighted an effect on earnings into adulthood.
Head of the research, Professor Dieter Wolke said: "This study is of importance because it could be used to flag up the need for extra support at school for children who are born pre-term."

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog
Placement of the Week:  School Nurse, Washington State 
Congratulations to Denise P., of on her brand new School Nurse position through PediaStaff for one of our brand new clients.
Denise will be treating high school aged students at two school sites in close proximity to one another. This is a full-time position for 7 hours per day, 5 days per week.  It involves typical school nurse duties: dispersing medicine to children in the morning and at lunchtime and monitoring a couple of students with self-manage diabetes.
Congrats, Denise!
We are working with a school district on the Eastern Shore of Virginia that is in need of two full-time Speech Language Pathologists for school year 2015-2016.  5 days a week/37.5 hours.  The children have varied types of disabilities including Autism.  Both positions will service children from early childhood to high school. The caseload will be approximately 55-65 children.  Immediate start.  Therapists with their Clinical Certificate of Competence are preferred, but CFY candidates are welcome to apply.
This is a prime destination for those looking for quiet villages, hunting, fishing, beaches, and friendly, welcoming people.  It is on the peninsula that separates the Chesapeake Bay from the Atlantic Ocean.  The westernmost point in the county is Tangier Island, accessible from the county by tour boat during the summer, and the easternmost point is Assateague Island accessible by causeway.  One may watch the sunrise over the Atlantic and the sunset over the Chesapeake.  Between are acres of woodland and fields interspersed with towns and villages with unique shops and stores.

Learn About / Apply for This Job on our Blog
Now Hiring Throughout WA!
PediaStaff has several excellent School Psychologist positions opening up in WA - Olympia, Kitsap Peninsula, Centralia, Bremerton, Tacoma, and Vancouver
These contract positions are available NOW for the 2015/16 School Year.
Depending on the district's needs and your strengths and desires the caseload may include pre-K, elementary, middle or high school kids.Pay rates are outstanding (some of the best we offer anywhere in Washington) and are based on your experience, and your traveler status. Benefits are available too. 

Learn About / Apply for These Jobs on our Blog
App Review of the Week: Go Sequencing  
Review by Nikki Heyman from Talking/Talk
GoSequencing   from Smarty Ears currently has 38 sequences organized into categories. Sequencing is an important language skill. The ability to sequence is important for understanding, planning and retelling stories.
Settings:   Languages: There are three languages to choose from -  English, Spanish and Portuguese
There are 13 different levels of difficulty for each sequence from three steps to six steps.
Level 1 only requires the child to identify what happened first or last by selecting one of the pictures. Level 2 onward, requires the user to drag the image or text into the correct place.
Tapping on the image or text activates enables the user hear the content related to the picture or provides a text to speech option.

Read the Rest of this Review Through a Link our Blog
SLP Freebie of Week:  Back to School Verbs Activity
Source: Speech 2 You via Speechie Freebies]
Let's talk about verbs for a bit.  Verbs are one of my favorite vocabulary items to teach early communicators.  One reason is that verbs can be fun-you can jump, crash, run, spin, burp, sigh, cry or even put things in weird places (like your head).

Resource of the Week:   OT, PT & SLP Therapy Room Printables
[Source:  Pink Oatmeal]
I've gotten a bit carried away with making printables lately!  I love the design aspect of it.  It's good therapy! I'm sad to admit it, but I've never decorated my desk.  The majority of the reason is I'm rarely there, but really I could have put up at least one picture.  In my printable frenzy I made up a few therapy room printables that I'm going to use on my desk.  At least this way there will be something there besides pens and sticky notes! If I had a therapy room they would be perfect to use there, but such is the life of an itinerant therapist.

Download Through a Link on our Blog
EI Corner:  9 Tips for Preventing Plagiocephaly
Editor's Note: Here is a great article for the parents and guardians of your littlest clients!
[Source:  Baby Begin]
Plagiocephaly is a fairly common condition, especially since the inception of the Back to Sleep campaign in 1994. The success of this campaign has dramatically reduced the incidence of SIDS deaths, but has had the unintended consequence of flattening little heads. Is plagiocephaly unavoidable? Absolutely not! We have some easy tips for keeping your baby's head round and healthy.
  • Limit "container" time. It's all too easy to rely on car seats, strollers, swings and other containers to carry your baby. Keep container time to less than three hours a day and choose alternatives like more floor time and baby wearing carriers.

SLP Corner: Top 5 Parent Handouts for {Preschool} SLPs
by Jenna Rayburn of The Speech Room News
Part of my role at our district early childhood center is to complete incoming evaluations for children entering the program. We have about half of our students come from the state birth to three program (Help Me Grow) and half community referrals.
I get to work with new families each week and sometimes I'm the very first speech-language pathologist they have worked with or met. Other times, they're experienced with the intervention crowd and I'm just teaching them how school-based services are different from the previous programming options. No matter the experience level, I'm spending time 

OT Corner:  40 Free Play Dough Mats for Pre-Schoolers
[Source:  Mama OT]
Play dough mats are pictures or drawings that can be laminated or placed in a page protector, and they encourage a child to interact with the pictures through the use of play dough. This provides them a great opportunity to work on their fine motor, problem solving, pretend play, pre-writing, pre-reading, and pre-math skills, all while keeping them occupied and (hopefully) out of trouble!
In my last post, I shared 12 simple play dough activities for preschoolers, which you can  read by clicking here. At the end of that post, I mentioned that I have been on a play dough mat kick lately and that I would be sharing a round-up of lots of play dough mats for preschoolers. I am happy to say that I have collected FORTY different links to preschool play dough mats from around the web!

Download this Great Resource Through a Link on our Blog

Special Ed Corner: 3 Classroom Organization Hacks
[Source: Autism Classroom Resources]

I wanted to share 3 little classroom organization hacks that I have found over the years that I don't think I've talked about much here.  They are simple things you can do that will make your life in a special education classroom much easier.  Actually it's more like 4, but I'm going to combine 2 of them.  You spend all this time setting up your classroom and the schedule and the zoning but getting started with it before it all becomes habit can be difficult.  That's what these 4 things are designed to address.
Editor's Note:  I love the PrAACtical ACC blog by Carol Zangari.   Here is an excellent post she put up recently that compiles some of her best articles about working with Beginning Communicators.
The following titles are included in this post.  Click the link at the bottom to go to Carol's blog to read them.
  • Core Words, Direct Vocabulary Instruction, and Beginning Communicators
  • Helping Beginning Communicators Expand Their Sentence Length
  • Let Me Tell You Something: Narratives for the Beginning Communicator
  • Breaking Through with Emerging Intentional and Beginning Communicators of All Ages
  • A PrAACtical Literacy Activity for Beginning Communicators
  • Ideas About Vocabulary Instruction for Beginning Communicators
Read These and More Articles Through a Link our Blog

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