February 14, 2014
Issue 7, Volume 7
It's All About the Choices!     
Greetings and Happy Valentine's Day!

Please enjoy our weekly newsletter offering.
News Items:
  • Preterm Babies' Language Skills Better When Exposed to Adult Speech
  • Low-Income Schools See Big Benefits in Teaching Mindfulness
  • CBT Aids Patients with Body Dysmorphic Disorder
  • Synesthesia Linked to Autism
  • Feel Good Story of the Week: Kids Read to Homeless Cats and Everybody Wins
  • Common Infections Linked to Pediatric Strokes - Vaccines May Reduce Risk
PediaStaff News
  • Looking for SLP Jobs? Find PediaStaff at Texas Speech and Hearing Conference
  • PediaStaff Placement of the Week: Atlanta!
Therapy Activities, Tips and Resources
  • SLP Resource of the Week: Caroline Bowen's Resources Index
  • Freebie of the Week: Emotions PECS Cards
  • Featured Book: Whole Body Listening Larry at Home
  • Pinterest Pinboard of the Week: Therapy Activities & Ideas to Celebrate the Olympics

Articles and Special Features 

  • Pediatric Therapy Corner: Looking At Metabolism in Down Syndrome
  • Private Practitioner's Corner: When Hiring, Should You Pay Staff as Employees or Contractors? 
  • SLP Corner: A Labor of Love - A Special Literacy Camp
  • Worth Repeating: CHARGE Syndrome - Multiple Congenital Anomalies Including Disorders of All Senses and Speech, Language, Feeding, Swallowing, and Behavior
  • Video Worth Repeating: Teens on the Move: An Exercise Video for Teens with Spina Bifida
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Have a great weekend and Take Care!

Heidi Kay and the PediaStaff Team

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Early Language Intervention in the News:  Preterm Babies' Language Skills Better When Exposed to Adult Speech

[Source:  Medical News Today]


The linguistic benefits of talking to babies has been well documented, as their brains rapidly develop, allowing them to make millions of new connections. Now, researchers looking at the effects of adult speech on preterm infants have found that increased adult speech during the early weeks of life is associated with better cognitive scores later.


Results of the study are published in Pediatrics, the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

The study authors note that older children exposed to little amounts of adult speech are at risk for delays in language development, but it had not yet been established whether the same was true for preterm babies.


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

Mindfulness/Meditation Training in the News: Low-Income Schools See Big Benefits in Teaching Mindfulness

[Source:  Mindshift]


On his first day teaching at Coronado Elementary School in Richmond, Calif., students threw rocks at Jean-Gabrielle Larochette, pretending he was a police officer. He spent fifteen minutes of every class calming down a handful of kids in this low-income-neighborhood public school who wouldn't follow directions or behave.


Larochette began practicing meditation and mindfulness to cope with his own stresses of teaching and supporting traumatized kids. He believed the breathing techniques that helped calm his fears might work for his students too, so he founded the Mindful Life Project.


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

CBT in the News:  Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Aids Patients with Body Dysmorphic Disorder  

[Source:  Psych Central]


In a new study, researchers at Rhode Island Hospital found cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) significantly improved outcomes among patients with body dysmorphic disorder (BDD).

BDD is a common, often severe, and under-recognized body image disorder that affects an estimated 1.7 percent to 2.4 percent of the population.


The study, published online in advance of print in the journal Behavior Therapy, showed that CBT resulted in significant improvements in patients' BDD symptoms and level of disability, as well as high levels of patient satisfaction.

Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

Autism Research in the News:  Synesthesia Linked to Autism 

[Source:  Psych Central]


New findings suggest that people with autism have a higher than average chance of also having synesthesia, the condition in which the senses are mixed.


Professor Simon Baron-Cohen of Cambridge University and colleagues explain that synesthesia involves input to one sense triggering a response in a different sense.


For example, a person with "colored hearing" synesthesia sees colors after hearing sounds. Most mixed responses are visual, although synesthesia can involve any pair of senses, such as tasting flavors when hearing sounds. Autism is a condition involving "social-communication disability, alongside resistance to change and unusually narrow interests or activities," explain the researchers.


Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

Feel Good Story of the Week:  Kids Read to Homeless Cats and Everybody Wins 

Thanks to NASP Online for sharing this Story!

It's story time at the Animal Rescue League of Berks County in Birdsboro, Penn. where dozens of kids come to the shelter each week to read to the adoptable cats, improve their skills and provide comfort to cats awaiting their forever homes.

According to the shelter's Marketing & Communications Director, Beth Ireland, the Reading Buddies program is the brainchild of ARL's program director, Kristi Rodriquez, whose own son struggled with reading. Rodriguez knew pets were often helpful in providing assistance to young readers so she brought Sean, a fifth grader, in to the shelter to read to the cats. He loved it so much, that he asked to come back. Six months later, Sean has shown remarkable improvement in his reading and now reads to the family's dogs at home.


Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

Pediatric Stroke in the News:  Common Infections Linked to Pediatric Strokes - Vaccines May Reduce Risk  

[Source:  Medical XPress] 


Common infections are associated with a significantly higher chance of stroke in children, but routine vaccinations may help decrease risk, according to preliminary research presented at the American Stroke Association's International Stroke Conference 2014.


"The protective association of routine vaccination against childhood stroke provides a widely available means of prevention, and this information can easily be dispersed by pediatric healthcare providers," said Nancy Hills, Ph.D., M.B.A., lead researcher and assistant professor of neurology at the University of California, San Francisco Medical Center.


Read the Rest of this Article Through a Link our Blog

PediaStaff News:  Looking for SLP Jobs? Find PediaStaff at Texas Speech and Hearing Conference  

[Source:  PR Web]

PediaStaff recruiters are ready to meet with thousands of clinicians at the 57th Annual Texas Speech-Language Hearing Association (TSHA) Convention and Exhibition to be held February 27 - March 1 (Booth #437) at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston, Texas.

With more than 4,500 speech-language pathologists, audiologists, consumers, and speakers from Texas and surrounding areas attending, the convention will serve as an exchange of ideas, information, and technology. Attendees can register on TSHA's website.  Register by February 12 to receive a 

Featured Placement the Week:  Atlanta!  

Congratulations to Carlyn H, LPT on her full-time, Physical Therapy position with PediaStaff's private therapy client in suburban Atlanta!


Our client is a clinic committed to a "complete approach" for children with special needs. Although this is a primarily sensory clinic, included among their provisions are neuro-based therapy, hippotherapy, aquatic therapy, and sound, among other approaches.  She will work with a great group of Pediatric Therapists!


It's a great opportunity for Carlyn.  Congrats!

SLP Resource of the Week:  Caroline Bowen's Resources Index  

'This is the Resources Index to Caroline Bowen's fantastic website Speech-Language-Therapy.com.   It was formerly know as the "freebies page." 
The intervention resources include Singleton Consonant and Consonant Cluster pictures, Vowel pictures and vowel contrasts, Consonant Minimal Pair pictures, Near Minimal Pair pictures, and wordlists and worksheets based around facilitative articulatory contexts, nonlinear phonology, complexity principles and lexical properties.


Access this Fantastic Resources Site Through a Link on our Blog

Freebie of the Week:  Emotions PECS Cards

This is an excellent free resource from Educate Autism via the Daily Autism Freebie blog!  Go get it! 


Basic PECS Faces
Eight different faces representing basic emotions. These faces are kept basic and exaggerate the emotions. They also come in 2 inch PECS size.    

Male Detailed Faces
Seven different emotions created with more detailed male specific faces. They may be more useful for an older child or for progressing from basic faces.  

Female Detailed Faces
Eight different emotions created with more detailed female specific faces. They may be more useful for an older child or for progressing from basic faces.


 Download these PECS Through a Link on our Blog

Featured Book of the Week:  Whole Body Listening Larry at Home  

by Kristen Wilson and Elizabeth Sautter


Being a good listener means much more than just hearing what is said with the ears. It is important to break down ALL of the components of listening, to teach your kids to listen with their eyes, hands, feet, brains, hearts - indeed their whole bodies!


Designed to stimulate discussions at home and at school about how we listen as a member of our family and in groups, Whole Body Listening Larry at Home teaches children with fun lessons wonderfully illustrated to bring the concepts to life. This book can read with ALL younger students by parents, teachers, etc. The book can be read with the child and the child can then read the book on his or her own, with siblings, friends, grandparents Developed from years of using Whole Body Listening Larry to teach children in their practice, speech-language 


Learn More About this Book on our Blog

Pinerest Pinboard of the Week:  Therapy Activities & Ideas to Celebrate the Olympics  

Just because it's cold out, doesn't mean you can't celebrate the Olympics indoors!

Check out our recently beefed up Pinterest Pinboard of Therapy Ideas to Celebrate the Olympics.  


From indoor versions of winter sports to get the kids moving, a miniature sensory 'ice rink' for toddlers, great make and take crafts for cutting, tearing and handwriting practice,  and lots of books, speech and literacy activities, you will find something for everyone on this board to get your students and clients into the Olympic spirit!


Check out the Pinboard Through a Link on our Blog

Pediatric Therapy Corner: Looking At Metabolism in Down Syndrome

[Source:  DS-Health.com]


By: Joan E. Medlen, R.D., L.D.

In the first weeks after our son with Down syndrome was born, my thoughts strayed to his health throughout his life. My impression was that all adults with Down syndrome were very obese. As a dietitian, most of my work had been in the weight management area. I had seen first-hand the effects long-term obesity had on a person's life. I remember emphatically explaining to my husband that we needed to be an aerobically active family. I asked him to consider cross-country skiing instead of downhill skiing, and to plan for activities like family biking trips.

Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

Private Practitioner's Corner: When Hiring, Should You Pay Staff as Employees or Contractors?

by Janet M. Krebs, MS CCC-SLP


One of the questions posed most frequently by private practitioners is, "When I hire others to work for me, can I pay them as contractors?" The correct answer is, "It all depends on the role they will have in your business." That answer may sound evasive, but the determination is not simple and all the requirements need to be considered.


As an employer, it always appears to be simpler to just hire someone as an independent contractor who would be responsible for his or her own taxes and Social Security deductions-and all you have to do is cut a check for hours worked and issue a 1099 form at the end of the year. That's what I did when I first had speech-language pathologists working for me. Everything went along smoothly until my state Department of Labor decided to audit my business. After lots of anguish and preparation, it turned out that I owed the state six years of back taxes and penalties for all my employees.

Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

SLP Corner: A Labor of Love - A Special Literacy Camp

by Tina Moreno, CCC-SLP 


Like their friends, children who use AAC to communicate have so much to share.  They have the same desire to learn to read and write as the peers sitting beside them in their classrooms.  However, teachers often find it particularly challenging to teach children who must access written language differently.


This was my experience as a mom of my own handsome AAC communicator.  When Mateo was in first grade, his enthusiastic yet visibly frustrated young teacher confessed to me, "I have no idea how to teach a nonverbal child to read." Two months later, I returned to her classroom armed with resources from my first Closing The Gap conference.  Since then, I went from graphic designer to school-based speech-language pathologist on a mission to give all of my students a voice of their own and access to books and pens and pencils-in whatever form they might take.


Read the Rest of This Article on our Blog

Worth Repeating: CHARGE Syndrome - Multiple Congenital Anomalies Including Disorders of All Senses and Speech, Language, Feeding, Swallowing, and Behavior

by Cheng, L. (2006, September 26). The ASHA Leader.

CHARGE syndrome is a genetic disorder (one in 10,000 to15,000 live births) with multiple physical, sensory, and behavioral anomalies. Children with CHARGE typically undergo 10 surgeries before age 3. Although early mortality rates have been 10% to 20%, survival rates have improved with cardiac treatment. Individuals with CHARGE may have deficits in every sensory modality and frequently exhibit challenging behaviors. CHARGE is presently the leading genetic cause of deaf-blindness at birth in the United States.

Video Worth Repeating: Teens on the Move: An Exercise Video for Teens with Spina Bifida

by: The National Center on Physical Activity and Disability
"Teens on the Move" is an exciting exercise video for teens with spina bifida. Produced through a collaborative effort by NCPAD, the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago (RIC), and the Spina Bifida Association of America(SBAA), this video is filmed in high definition (HD). 


Watch this Video Through a Link on our Blog

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