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Continuum of Services

Continuum of Services

The ability to communicate with a variety of people and across many different settings is an important skill for our school age children not only now but throughout their lives. Starting early is very important, so the LES Speech Language Pathologist spends a majority of her time in the preschool, kindergarten and lower grades. 

For a child who has been receiving speech and language services through an Early Intervention Program, prior to age 3, the SLP assists the family and preschool to ensure a smooth transition to the school setting upon the child’s 3rd birthday. 

For those entering preschool or kindergarten without previous speech and language services, along with the Occupational Therapist and classroom teachers, the SLP assesses whether or not a child needs extra support in a particular area.  The DIAL-4 screener, administered each Fall, is used and discussed in order to determine the best plan for effective teaching of each student.  Families are notified if there are any concerns.
 

Core Curricula

The role of the LES Speech Language Pathologist is many faceted.  Although still an important part of the job, the SLP’s role has expanded well beyond pulling out students to a separate therapy room to practice speech articulation skills.  The SLP collaborates with classroom teachers to ensure that they are working together to teach communication skills that align with both the academic and social curriculum.  In order to do this effectively, the SLP meets at least weekly with teachers to discuss particular students and how best to facilitate their communication skills.  The SLP is also involved in Professional Learning Communities related to the promotion of communication skills.

Targeted Intervention

The SLP has a particular area of expertise to lend to classroom learning.  To supplement and enhance communication skills in the classroom curriculum, lessons are provided that may benefit specific students as well as the whole classroom.  Additionally, the SLP, with the approval of parents/guardians and in conjunction with ongoing assessment and discussion by the classroom “team”, may support a student either individually or in a group to work on a particular skill on a short term basis.  Examples of these interventions are as follows: 

  • Sound of the Week (listening and speech sound lessons in preschool)
  • Co-teach specific language rich curricula (e.g. Science)
  • Small group work (phonological awareness, math vocabulary, social language)
  • Personal Space Camp 
  • Voice Volume classes
  • Braidy (Story Grammar Marker tool to teach narrative storytelling and writing-kindergarten)
  • Drama Time (preschool playwriting and acting)
  • Friends and Feelings (social pragmatic lessons)

Intensive Intervention

At times, a student may need more intensive support in the area of speech, language and hearing.  Students are often identified through an evaluation process and may receive individual or small group services through an Individual Education Plan or 504 Plan.

Examples of these interventions are as follows: 

  • Pre-teach curriculum vocabulary for students with hearing impairments
  • Speech articulation services
  • Helping students to develop social pragmatic language skills individually or in small groups (Lunch Bunches)
  • Consultation with classroom teacher, paraeducator(s), and/or specialists for a variety of language related purposes (e.g. modification of environment for students with hearing difficulties; providing specific targeted language activities; education regarding such needs as: hearing impairments, stuttering, childhood apraxia of speech, selective mutism, Autism Spectrum Disorder, sign language, word retrieval problems, language learning disability, auditory processing disorder, etc.)
  • Development, implementation and consultation regarding Augmentative and Alternative Communication devices and technology for non-speakers
  • Frequent data collection and observation
  • Regular home-school communication
  • Collaboration with outside service providers 

If you have questions or would like to know more about any of the above programs or interventions, please do not hesitate to contact me.  I can be reached at 413-548-9144 or gallagher@leverettschool.org.