OOPS! Don’t forget to renew...

Feb 14, 2016 by

Well even with all my articles on the importance of liability insurance and reminderst to my readers to renew their liability insurance……guess what I did? I forgot to renew my policy by Feb 1. For some reason I had the 15th in my head. No problem I was within the grace period so Trust Risk Management renewed my policy without question.  Next time you take the time to check on your CEU status (which is something else I can’t seem to remember without writing it down) check on your liability insurance renewal...

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Bags! Bags! We love bags!

Feb 4, 2016 by

Every so often the topic of “Which bag is best” come up on an SLP Facebook page. No matter what setting you’re in SLP’s need bags. I doubt many of us could not function with out 2-3 or 10 good bags at our disposal. Having a bag that is functional and of course stylish is the main goal of any serious SLP. I personally can’t leave the house without at least 4 bags hanging across my body and both arms. Each morning when I load up the term “Pack Mule” comes to mind.   So what bags do SLPs need? A big bag to shlep our daily materials from place to place. The younger the students the more physical materials we need, the bigger the bag. A bag to keep our files organized. We...

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March 2, 2016 Read Across America Day...

Jan 26, 2016 by

March 2nd is The National Education Association’s Read Across America Day. Read more about it on the NEA website . Does your school do anything special for the Event. My school usually does a little something to rah rah reading. While this is a very important event, don’t forget to encourage your students or your children to read all the time. Reading is a great way to develop language, vocabulary and background knowledge. Lots of cute t-shirts out there to celebrate the day and of course the required Dr. Suess...

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Are accommodations taking the place of specialized instruction?...

Jan 18, 2016 by

Several years back the powers that be came up with RTI or Response to Intervention. Seriously what a semantically flawed title. RTI was interpreted and implemented differently in every school system based on the administration’s perspective. At first I disliked RTI, I felt it was a program that delayed needed services. RTI also suggested that accommodations could be a cure all for students who struggled. Then for a while, I thought RTI was really working and it did for some kids. It was very dependent on the understanding/knowledge of the RTI team and willingness to put effort into the process. Teachers were beginning recognize weaknesses/issues and bring up names of at risk students sooner. However, looking back I think the names were brought up because teachers were more concerned that the student in question would...

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Reading and understanding social context is key to good pragmatic skills...

Nov 27, 2015 by

Today I am publishing a retread article I first wrote for examiner.com back in 2012. I thought about this article after presenting a paraprofessional training last week. The attendees asked if I could give them some specific examples of pragmatic difficulities in more typical students. While I was able to provide examples, my response wasn’t as organized as I would have liked. I think I will be sharing this article (or improving on the article) next time I present to paraprofessional or parents. As always suggestions and comments welcomed. Teresa Reading and understanding social context is key to good pragmatic skills When kids are taught “context” most classroom teachers are usually referring to the context of a story. Students, especially the ones who have non verbal learning disabilities, aspergers or even just lack social...

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Speech Language consultants and school contracts...

Nov 23, 2015 by

One of the most challenging things about promoting a niche book is how to get it into the hands of the people the book is meant for. I’m sure most of my book sales have been to SLPs who hopefully share it with their administrators or at least find it supportive. A couple of weeks ago I received a message on Facebook from a consulting service, mentioning that they purchased a couple of my books. The purpose of their purchase was to give the books to school administrators. The information I provided in the book not only explained the role of the SLP in schools, it helped outline and justify time needed to properly service the schools they contract with. I was blown away and thrilled. I had not even thought of this as...

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Do you have professional liability insurance?...

Nov 2, 2015 by

  With the beginning of the school year it is time to make sure you professional liability policy is up to date. This year I switched my policy to Trust Risk Management Services, who does continues as an active sponsor on this blog. TRMS provides Professional Liability Insurance for Speech Language Pathologists offering comprehensive policies tailored to your specific needs and reasonable rates. You can request an instant quote and learn more about professional liability insurance by going to the TRMS site or clicking the link located in the menu above. I feel very strongly about the need for Speech Language Pathologists to carry personal professional liability insurance. While the schools and agencies I’ve worked for over the years obviously carry liability insurance, I understood that I couldn’t always depend on my employer for enough protection or cover...

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Caseload and Workload article review...

Oct 11, 2015 by

I found what I think is a fairly new article on ASHA focusing on Caseload and Workload. The article makes a fair attempt at explaining workload vs. caseload. There are a few points I would disagree with in the article but for the most part it does a good job of explaining that some students just require more man hours than others based on their disability. This is an article obviously written for school administrators, yet I doubt many administrators have even taken a look. The article is a little muddy in the middle on how to determine a workload analysis. But at least it brings up the topic. I don’t feel a workload analysis has to be that complicated. However, I guess even administrators have to show their data. Caseload and Workload also...

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Scheduling Template

Aug 31, 2015 by

Can anyone use this to work out their draft schedule (I mean schedules)? I know it doesn’t take long to create but we know every minute counts. It is a pages doc. Scheduling template 2015 Here is the PDF Scheduling template 2015...

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7th grade and the SLP

Aug 27, 2015 by

Yesterday I received a question that had to do with transition to 7th grade “I find it difficult to transition students from 6th grade to middle school, meaning targeting appropriate goals/etc. What are the areas you find critical to this age? Do you have a screening tool you give to your students? What are the main areas you look at to gauge success in junior high/middle school?” First lets talk briefly about 7th grade. 7th grade, no matter what middle school model your school has, is a significant bump up in academics, expectations, higher order language (understanding and usage, texts, adult usage, peers……) and higher order thinking. 7th grade is the year the speech and language students dismissed from therapy a couple of years ago will end up back on your radar. The reason...

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The School SLP-book reviews

Aug 10, 2015 by

Last April I introduced my first book The School Speech Language Pathologist, An administrators guide to understanding the role of the SLP in schools along with strategies to aid staffing, workload management and student success. It has been a lot of fun working on book promotion and I’ve received almost 100% positive feedback from other SLPs. Several SLPs have mentioned that they have good enough relationships with the administrators to share the book. Yeah! Two SLP’s reported that their administrators asked to peek at the book (double Yeah!). Two SLP bloggers have been kind enough to highlight my book on their blogs. I want to share their perspectives with you. Both of these blogs are very professional and interesting so take a peek around their sites while you’re there. The first review was written...

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Concerts: Don’t forget your ear plugs...

Aug 2, 2015 by

After taking a little bit of a hiatus from blogging due to vacation it is really hard to get started again. I lugged my computer 3000 miles with the hopes that I would get some writing and book promotion done but that didn’t happen. Since school got out I’ve jotted down several ideas for articles but never quite found the time or passion to develop them. Well, it’s time to get back on track. This past weekend I attended the first concert I’ve been to in over two years. It was some old rockers but it was still loud. Ear protection did not even dawn on me until the break between bands where next to the beer line was the table selling ear plugs. At that point I flashed to the generic package of...

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Buzzword Book Give-a-way

Jun 17, 2015 by

Hearing about which buzzwords bother you the most was a lot of fun. Every single one of the words submitted were irritating in their own unique way. I chose two that I thought were the best worse buzzwords. The first buzz word selected was submitted by Patricia. Her word was “rigor” and for the obvious reason, it makes Pat think of death. I have to admit I also flash to an episode of Law and Order, with the pathologist saying, “TheThe body was in full rigor” every time I hear that word used in school. If they are going to use the word ‘rigor” in education why just use the word “rigorous” it makes more sense. dictionary.com lists the following meanings for the word “rigor” noun 1. Strictness, severity, or harshness, as in dealing with people....

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Buzz Words in Education

Jun 7, 2015 by

In the field of education buzz words come and go quickly. Current buzz words in education usually reflect the trend of the week and saturate conferences, school meetings, program development, scholarly articles, blog posts, social media and even lunchroom conversation for short periods of time. After working in education for so many years, it is difficult to take any new or even recycled buzz word seriously. Reality is most buzz words in education don’t buzz for long and are quickly replaced with a new flavor of the day. The buzz word I dislike the most has been around forever. It’s only been the past 10 years or so that this word has taken on a negative connotation for me. The buzz word I have grown to dislike is STRATEGY. This was a perfectly good...

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Therapy Hot Spot Review

May 25, 2015 by

I recently came across this new service/product and fell in love with the concept. Therapy Hot Spot is a relatively new business that puts together monthly therapy kits based on the needs of your current caseload. Wendy Underwood OTA/L is the owner and brains behind this idea. Wendy and her staff create therapy boxes for PTs, PTAs, OTs, COTAs, SLPs, SLPAs and parents. After having you fill out a questionnaire and personally speaking with you, a “therapy box” is filled with materials and suggestions that target your needs and the needs of your students.   I reviewed a sample kit and found a variety of items that could tackle general speech and language related concepts and student needs. The box was easily portable and sturdy. I don’t know about you but my workload is...

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Play, It’s more important than you think...

May 15, 2015 by

I ran across this fun article floating around Facebook.  33 Activities for Kids That Cost Under $10 Dollars.  Some of these activities looked like a lot of fun.  While the examples they show look a little too “neat” to be done by kids, with some of the activities you can hand them the materials they need and step back.  As a matter of fact it might be a good idea to let them develop their own style of play with their friends.  The amount of learning, experimentation and problem solving the kids can do on their own is amazing if you let them try before swooping in to help. Take a look at the tin foil and hose experiment, what is the worse that could happen.  First they could actually learn how to rip foil...

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Introducing My First Book!

May 9, 2015 by

Today I want to introduce my first book!   The School Speech Language Pathologist An Administrator’s Guide to understanding the role of the SLP in schools along with strategies to aid staffing, workload management and student success.     I wrote The School Speech Language Pathologist to help demystify and define the role of the Speech Language Pathologist in the school setting. The concrete suggestions provided in this book will help to foster more productive speech and language services, aid caseload management, aid student success and guide program development in schools. The role of the Speech Language Pathologist in the schools is diverse and crosses both medical and educational disciplines. SLPs are developmental experts and have to know how to address the needs of clients from birth to adulthood. Speech and language development is...

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A New Book By Ken Robinson

Apr 23, 2015 by

This past week I saw an interview with Ken Robinson promoting his new book “Creative Schools: The Grassroots Revolution That’s Transforming Education” Ken Robinson is a speaker and author I’ve been following for several years now. Back in 2012 I reviewed an article interviewing Sir Ken in of all places the Costco magazine.  http://www.theschoolspeechtherapist.com/sir-ken-robinson-calls-for-a-revolution-in-education/ As soon as I get a chance I will be reading and reviewing his new book.   The reviews look good and I’m sure what he has to say is right on the money. Sir Ken also gives some pretty rousing ted...

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CELF-5 Results?

Mar 14, 2015 by

Sorry it’s been so long since you’ve heard from me. I have another project in the works which I am sure most of the school based SLPs will either be thrilled with or at least agree with. With any luck at all I will be able to announce that project before the end of March. So yesterday I received and interesting question about the CELF-5 from Dawn, an SLP in the mid-west. Apparently many of the therapists in her district are finding kids are no longer qualifying on the new CELF-5. She was wondering if anyone else having this same experience? I don’t think I’m seeing this and I’ve given the CELF-5 at least 30 times. However, thinking about it I’m wondering if our “fence kids” are doing a little better than expected. That...

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Speech Language Pathology Gifts?...

Jan 19, 2015 by

Did you know that Amazon carries a variety of Speech Therapy gifts/Speech Language Pathology gifts. I guess if you went to ASHA you might have seen some of these odd little trinkets. Some are rather cute and some are a little freaky. I love my job but you would have to live a Speech Language Pathology lifestyle to use some of them. I could put links to over 229 items. I’m just going to pick out a few for fun. “What the he-double hockey sticks is it?” People will be afraid to ask A little creepy My tree felt empty without this This will leave the other guys asking, “Where can I get one?” If I want to keep the kids and my husband away from my car, I’ll put this on it Doesn’t...

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