Clinical Therapy Services
Therapy services are offered within individual sessions, family sessions or small peer groups depending upon the needs of the individual and adhere to ASHA national standards for best practices. We offer expert remedial services. The frequency and duration of services will depend on the levels of functioning and individual needs that are identified during the evaluation or academic/medical record review process. Our speech-language pathologists and special educators often collaborate and work in conjunction with school based therapists, teachers, educational specialists and other health professionals in order to maximize carryover across educational settings. Ongoing diagnostic therapy sessions are conducted regularly to monitor progress. We use the "Gradual Release to Independence" approach in order to maximize each student's ability to gain independence with new skills and strategies.
Auditory Processing and Listening Comprehension
Students learn attention and processing strategies, such as Think Ahead. Students learn visualization, anticipatory listening and organizational strategies important in processing verbal information for new learning. Mental imagery, mind mapping and organized note taking strategies are just some of the strategies that are taught. As with all strategies, they are tailored for a student's learning style and taught systematically using a metacognitive approach.
Phonology, Vocabulary, Word retrieval and
Verbal Organizational Skills
Students learn semantic and organizational strategies that maximize verbal learning and retrieval. The Expanding Expression Tool, Story Grammar Marker, Edwin Ellis Tools and Thinking Maps are used. Phonological awareness skills can also improve one-word retrieval difficulties due to underlying phonological challenges. There are various programs to assist with this difficulty, including the multi-sensory language-based program Lindamood LiPS.
Language Syntax or Grammar Skills
Students learn specific grammar skills with the use of systematic multisensory programs, such as Project Read, Landmark Expressive Language and Writing Programs and the Winston Grammar programs. Grammar skills are important for understanding and using the parts of words (morphology, such as contain versus containment), understanding and combining words to formulate sentences, as well as organizing ideas into paragraph and essay structures.
Problem Solving and Executive Function Therapy
The speech-language pathologists are helpful for teaching the language and cognitive tools for developing the "inner speech" that students rely on when attending to a problem, analyzing a cause, understanding consequences, generating and carrying out a solution, and evaluating outcomes. A metacognitive approach is used where students develop two types of awareness: intellectual and situational awareness. As students learn to develop stronger awareness skills, inner speech, and learning routines, they learn to apply effective learning and communication strategies in daily contexts.
Study and Academic Learning Skills
Students learn specific homework, note taking, test taking, project management skills, as well as organization of time, space and materials that is matched to their learning styles and the demand of their current and potential learning contexts. The Executive Function and self-evaluation processes are integrated into all aspects of study skills training in order to maximize independence. Skills are taught in individual sessions, peer dyads and small groups depending on the student's needs and the availability of an appropriate peer group.
Students learn how to use language in various communication contexts, also referred to as pragmatics. Services are provided for a variety of diagnoses that impact communication from age 3 to adulthood. Verbal and nonverbal social thinking skills important for effective communication are taught and then generalized to maximize a student's flexibility to apply social thinking in novel situations. Clinicians are trained in using Michelle Garcia Winner's Social Thinking Programs, among others in order to teach with the most updated research efficacy based training methods. Individual or small group sessions may be offered depending upon the student's individual needs and the availability of an appropriate peer group.
Our literacy program aims to improve phonological and orthographic skills critical for word recognition, fluent reading and spelling at grade level. Programs such as Wilson Reading Program, Orton Gillingham, Lindamood LiPS, EMPOWER, and Project Read are some of the multi-sensory language based therapy programs that are used in the center by trained and/or certified providers.
Writing and Executive Function Program
Writing is the ultimate Executive Function skill as it requires massive amounts of simultaneous "online" processing. When writing, one must at the same time retrieve a sentence, determine the correct grammar of a sentence, punctuate the sentence, type/write the sentence while remembering the correct spelling and formation of letter or the location of the key on the keyboard. One must also be sure that the sentence is organized and related to the previous sentence and continues to answer/be relevant to the topic/question the paper is about. Writing is also a social thinking skill as the student must use their social thinking to identify who will be reading their written work. Executive Function based instruction is infused with the student's writing curriculum to support students in developing executive control for the writing process, to increase the quality and volume of their thought retrieval, to expand on their ideas and to use metacognition to evaluate the quality of their writing while making sure their written expression meets task requirements.