February 20, 2015
Issue 7, Volume 8
It's All About the Choices!     
Greetings and Happy Friday

Bundle up warm, and please enjoy our weekly newsletter.

News Items:
  • New Figures on Two Muscular Dystrophy Disorders
  • Researchers May Develop Saliva Test to Diagnose Autism
  • Brain System Appears to Compensate for Autism, OCD and Dyslexia
  • Hearing Experts Break Sound Barrier for Children w/o Hearing Nerve
  • Some Cerebral Palsy Caused by a Genetic Mutation
  • Sharp Rise in Occupational Therapy Cases at New York's Schools
Hot Jobs 
  • Hot Job:  Pediatric Home Health SLP - Pasadena, TX
  • Hot Job:  Pediatric Therapy Manager and OT - Crystal Lake, IL
  • Hot Jobs: Pediatric Home Health OT & PT - San Antonio, TX 
Therapy Activities, Tips and Resources
  • Pediatric Therapy Activity of the Week: Word Family Snowball Toss
  • Resource of the Week:  Database for Rehabilitation Measures - Most are FREE!
  • SLP Activity of the Week: Rhyming Board Game Printable
  • ADL Activity of the Week: Teaching Time Freebies

Articles and Special Features 

  • Career Corner: Mentors are Everywhere
  • Pediatric Therapy Corner: What if Its More Than Just "Misbehaving"?
  • Music Therapy Corner: Which Came First: Music or Language? 
  • SLP Corner: 28 Words to Boost Your Client's Vocabulary
  • School Nurses Corner: Preventing a Measles Outbreak at Your School
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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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Recent Occupational Therapist and COTA Jobs 

New Figures on Two Muscular Dystrophy Disorders

[Source: Science Daily]


Researchers in public health have reported in the first broad study in the United States the frequency of two muscle-weakness disorders that strike mostly boys: Duchenne muscular dystrophy and Becker muscular dystrophy.

The research team, led by the University of Iowa, found that about 1 in 5,000 boys, between 5 and 9 years old, have the inherited disorders. They also find the diseases appear to affect Hispanic boys more often than white or African-American boys, for reasons that are not well understood.


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

Researchers May Develop Saliva Test to Diagnose Autism

[Source:  Science Daily]


A spit test may one day be able to diagnose autism according to researchers at Clarkson University and the State University of New York at Plattsburgh. 

Scientists at the universities have published the first study showing that children with autism spectrum disorder have differences in protein levels in their saliva when compared to typically developing children. The study appeared in the Jan. 27 issue of the journal Autism Research.


Read the Rest of This Article Through a Link on our Blog
Brain System Appears to Compensate for Autism, OCD and Dyslexia  

[Source Medical News Today]


Individuals with five neurodevelopmental disorders - autism spectrum disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, Tourette syndrome, dyslexia, and Specific Language Impairment - appear to compensate for dysfunction by relying on a single powerful and nimble system in the brain known as declarative memory.

This hypothesis being proposed by a Georgetown University Medical Center neuroscientist is based on decades of research. It is published online and will be in the April issue of Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews.


Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

Hearing Experts Break Sound Barrier for Children w/o Hearing Nerve

[Source:  Medical News Today]


Los Angeles research team studies brain plasticity, auditory brainstem implant safety in NIH-backed clinical trial

A multi-institutional team of hearing and communication experts led by the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California (USC) is breaking sound barriers for children born without a hearing nerve in a clinical trial backed by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Launched in March 2014, the three-year study has enrolled five of 10 participants and successfully implanted an auditory brainstem implant (ABI) device in four children who previously could not hear.

The research team presented preliminary findings at the American Association


Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

Some Cerebral Palsy Caused by a Genetic Mutation

[Source:  Medical News Today]

An international research group led by a team at the University of Adelaide has made what they believe could be the biggest discovery into cerebral palsy in 20 years.

Emeritus Professor Alastair MacLennan (University of Adelaide) with Matthew Reinertsen, who has cerebral palsy are shown. Researchers have discovered that many cases of cerebral palsy may have genetic causes.

It has long been the belief that cerebral palsy occurs when a child experiences a lack of oxygen during pregnancy or at birth. However, the Australian Collaborative Cerebral Palsy Research Group, based at the University of Adelaide's Robinson Research Institute, has found at least 14% of cerebral palsy cases are likely caused by a genetic mutation.


Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

Sharp Rise in OT Cases at New York's Schools 

[Source:  NY Times]


A class of first graders at Public School 503 in Brooklyn sat on the floor one recent Friday, cross-legged on an alphabet-themed rug.


But as their teacher began a reading lesson, two boys positioned near the letters C and D sat not on the rug, but in small plastic armchairs. One wore a tight blue vest designed to apply pressure to his chest, while the other drew his hands across a weighted, velvety blanket draped over his small knees.


Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

Hot Job:  Pediatric Home Health SLP - Pasadena, TX  

Here's an outstanding opportunity for a Speech-Language Pathologist.  We have an immediate opening for a speech therapist to work with children full time in a home health setting.  The caseload is 19 children (36-38 visits/wk) located in the Pasadena, Laporte and Baytown areas and two after school kids.    Great pay and benefits are part of the compensation package including medical, dental, vision, and even company car options! CF candidates are welcome to apply, too.  Supervision of SLPAs is required.

Candidate must posses or be eligible for a Texas Speech and Hearing Association state license.  No assistants at this time, please.

Hot Job:  Pediatric Therapy Manager and OT - Crystal Lake, IL  

An outstanding opportunity is available to an Occupational Therapist with at least 2 years of experience.  We are hiring a full time therapist who is interested in developing their skills in management.  The position would be a split between treating pediatric patients in an outpatient setting and managing a team of 10-12 therapists.  Job duties will include collaborating with team on treatment plans, team building, HR duties, working with upper management on daily clinic activities, business plan and so on.  Previous experience in outpatient, management, and/or pediatrics are all a plus.    Candidates who possess strong communication skills, both written and oral, good interpersonal skills 

Learn About / Apply for This Job on our Blog

Hot Jobs:  Pediatric Home Health OT & PT - San Antonio, TX  

Immediate openings for experienced pediatric Occupational Therapist and Physical Therapist to work primarily inside the 1604 loop as a home health clinician.  Kids are primarily school aged with a wide variety of diagnoses.  Salary is commensurate with experience and a full benefits package is available that includes 100% paid premiums for medical, dental and vision plans. 

Therapists with good organizational and time management skills are preferred as well as those who possess strong interpersonal skills.  This is a ground floor opportunity to work with an up and coming home health provider.


Learn About / Apply for These Jobs on our Blog

Pediatric Therapy Activity of the Week: Word Family Snowball Toss

[Source:  I Can Teach My Child]

Word families can be a beneficial component in your teaching-your-child-to-read toolbox.

To put it simply, word families are words that rhyme.  Teaching children word families is a phonemic awareness activity that helps children see patterns in reading.  This is an important skill because it allows children to begin "reading" by grouping sets of letters within a word.  The first part of a word is called the onset and the last part of the word is conveniently called the rime (yes, spelled r-i-m-e, not r-h-y-m-e...it's a bit confusing).  Word families share a similar "rime" as the onset changes.


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

Resource of the Week:  Database for Rehabilitation Measures

[Source:  HeartSpace PT via Your Therapy Source]

In my Facebook feed, 
HeartSpace Physical Therapy for Children , shared a link to a database of over 200 rehabilitation measures.  Many of them are FREE and available in PDF format.  It doesn't get any easier than that for a last minute assessment.  Some of the resources are for the pediatric population so it is definitely worth it to look it over and bookmark your favorites.  There are so many to choose from and it will take a little time to go through the whole list.  The Rehabilitation Measures Database 


Access this Resource Through a Link on our Blog

SLP Activity of the Week: Rhyming Board Game Printable  

[Source:  No Time for Flash Cards]

Rhyming is one of my favorite literacy skills to work on with children because it's fun and rhyming is a vital part of literacy development. When children rhyme they play sounds and apply their abilities to new combinations of letter sounds. Rhyming uses a lot of different skills like listening, distinguishing specific sounds (phonemes), and being able to break a word into syllables. Obviously rhyming is important but it's also fun. I whipped up this super simple printable board game and was so pleased 


Download This Free Printable Game Through a Link on our Blog

ADL Activity of the Week: Teaching Time Freebies  

[Source: Tunstall's Teaching Tidbits]

This week we have been discovering the clock in our room.  Our standards say to represent and tell time.  What better way to represent time than to make our own clocks in every way we can!  In small group today we worked on this concept up close and personal! 

Rather than just telling the time, we are working to understand and represent clocks.

In groups, students were given the parts of a clock and had to create a model.


Read the Rest of this Post and Download These Teaching Time Freebies

Career Corner: Mentors are Everywhere

Teresa Roberts, MS, CCC-SLP

We are surrounded by mentors every day. It might not feel like it, because we may have a narrow definition of mentorship. If we limit the concept of mentorship to a formalized agreement between two people, we may miss out on the broad view of mentorship. Any work interaction provides us with a learning opportunity. In fact, we can cultivate mentorship from others by our own actions. Colleagues, related professionals, and administrators may enjoy informal mentorship roles when they are formed naturally.


We have the ability to draw forth advice and knowledge from others. Some years ago, I worked with an incredible School Psychologist who was dual-certified as a Child Development Specialist. I have never met anyone else like her and I doubt I ever will. She had a soft, reassuring, and skilled approach with families and staff. She was highly knowledgeable and astute about child needs and ways to provide intervention. 

Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

Pediatric Therapy Corner: What if It's More Than Just Misbehaving?

by Tatyana Elleseff MA CCC-SLP

Frequently,  I see a variation of the following scenario on  many speech and language forums.

The SLP is seeing a client with speech and/or language deficits in either school setting or private practice, who is having some kind of behavioral issues.

Some  issues  are described as mild such as  calling out, hyperactivity, impulsivity, or inattention, while others are more severe  and include  refusal, noncompliance, or aggression  such as kicking, biting,  or punching.


An array of advice from well-meaning professionals immediately follows.  Some behaviors may be labeled as "normal" due to the child's age (toddler),  others may be "partially excused" due to 

Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

Music Therapy Corner: Which Came First: Music or Language?

[Source: Psychology Today]


Which came first: language or music? Traditionally, music has been considered an evolutionary by-product of language. Language, after all, is one of the few skills we have that makes us uniquely human. Thus it has the more important evolutionary role. Music is just "auditory cheesecake." Unimportant. Pretty little fluff. A misunderstood by-product.

But this tradition is changing. Researchers and authors like Daniel Levitin, Michael Thaut, Ian Cross, Silvia Bencivello, and David Huron are challenging our views of music's role as an evolutionary adaptation. They have suggested-and provided preliminary evidence for-the theory that music is not an unnecessary by-product, but is instead a critical and core function of our brain. Consider the following:

SLP Corner: 28 Words to Boost Your Client's Vocabulary

[Source: Speech Dudes]

When developing a vocabulary set for an augmented and alternative communication (AAC) system - or indeed when deciding on what vocabulary to teach anyone - one of the most fundamental of measures you can use is frequency count; how often is a word used in a language?

No-one can predict with 100% accuracy which words will be "best" for an individual, but if you're going to take bets, you're pretty safe to assume that words such as that, want,stop, and what are going to be used by everyone from ages 2 to 200. By the same token, you'd not be missing much if you didn't spend too much time on words like ambidextrous, decalogue, and postilion [1].


School Nurses Corner: Preventing a Measles Outbreak at Your School

[Source:  NASN.org]

After the declaration that measles had been eradicated in the US, the disease is making a comeback.  In this segment, of NASN Radio, we offer prevention tips to be shared with teachers, parents and students. 


Listen to the Broadcast Through a Link on our Blog

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