Aug 2017

Speech & Language Therapy FAQs: Christina Answers Your Questions

By: Christina Rossi, M.S., CF-SLP As a speech and language pathologist (SLP), I am often asked about what I do and how my work helps kids in their daily lives. I love what I do, and I’m more than happy to answer these questions!   What is the difference between speech and language? Speech is the physical act of moving the articulators (jaw, tongue, and lips) to make sounds. Language is a multi-faceted process that encompasses understanding spoken conversation, using words to express thoughts and feelings, and following the unspoken social “rules” of conversation. Both speech and language affect our [...]

Aug 2017

5 Summer Activities to Improve Bilateral Coordination

By: Sara Sciarrino, MS, OTR/L Bilateral coordination, also referred to as bilateral integration, refers to the ability to use both sides of the body at the same time in a controlled and organized way. This skill is important for all different activities of our everyday lives, such as walking and running, zippering a jacket, going up and down stairs, and using two-handed tools, like scissors. If your child struggles with tasks that require using two hands or two feet together, consider these five fun activities for the summer: Hopscotch Nothing says summer like sidewalk chalk. Have your child draw a [...]

Jul 2017

Summer Sensory Fun At The Beach

By: Stephanie Kaliades OTR/L The weather is heating up, and pretty soon school will be out for the summer! Sensory play is a great way to not only give your child the sensory input they need but to have fun as well. Sensory activities are significant because they can help teach the brain to process sensory information more effectively. In turn, this can help your child respond more appropriately to their environment. I have included tactile, proprioceptive, and vestibular activities in this list. Tactile activities provide sensory input through touch, proprioceptive activities provide information to our muscle and joints, and [...]

Jul 2017

Summmer Speech and Language Essentials for Kids

Summer is an exciting time full of adventure, sunshine, and family fun. Summer is also a great time to work on speech and language skills - at home and while traveling! Our therapists put together some of their top tips for incorporating speech-language activities into your summer schedules. Speech-Language Activities at Home (contributions from Elyse Schultz, M.S., CCC-SLP) Go to a local farmer’s market Word-finding difficulties? Have your kids sort food by category (fruits, vegetables, etc.) color (red, yellow, etc.) taste (sweet, sour, etc). If you can’t make it to the market, you can also have your kids help sort [...]

Jun 2017

5 Must-Have Toys For Your Child

By: Lindsay Barret  M.S., CF-SLP Five tried and true toys that target development of language and cognitive skills! Puzzles. Puzzles introduce novel vocabulary, provide background knowledge, foster problem solving skills, and encourage visual-spatial awareness. They’re also great for working on simple single words such as “in,” “out,” or “more.” Mr. Potato Head. Mr. Potato Head targets body part and clothing vocabulary, following 1 and 2 step directions, and play skills. Musical instruments. Musical instruments teach children to imitate what they see and hear. Music also encourages expression and creativity. Farm animals. Playing with farm animals is a good way to [...]

Jun 2017

7 Toys to Facilitate Language Discovery

By: Lindsay Barret M.S., CF-SLP The best part about language is that it’s everywhere! The following list of toys and games are excellent to use when promoting language: Cause & Effect Toys   Ring stack Jack in the box Marble run Shape sorter What do these toys facilitate? Single words and short phrases: “Open”, “close”, “put in”, “put on”, “up”, “down”, “push”, “ready, set, go!”, “you go”, “I go”, “my turn”, and “your turn” Vocabulary: colors, shapes Problem-solving skills Puzzles   What do puzzles facilitate? Introducing vocabulary (animals, food, clothing, tools, sports, colors, shapes, modes of transportation) Basic concepts: numbers, [...]

May 2017

10 Ways to Introduce New Foods to Your Child

By: Lindsay Barret M.S., CF-SLP Mealtime can be stressful when your child has difficulty integrating new foods into his or her diet. This can be challenging for children for a variety of reasons, and is a unique process for each child. Taking a multidisciplinary approach can be beneficial, depending on the needs of your child. This team can include a pediatrician, nutritionist, speech-language pathologist, occupational therapist, or psychologist. The following tips can help reduce the pressure and fear of mealtime and encourage your child to try new foods: Make mealtime fun! Sing a song Integrate toys Making it fun yields [...]

May 2017

7 Ways to Get Rid of the Pacifier

  By: Katrina Wasserman  M.S., CCC-SLP Pacifiers are wonderful, until they are not! Getting rid of the pacifier is a rite of passage for parents and children.  It can be an overwhelming task since pacifiers become some children’s most beloved items. Here are some ideas to help you and your child become pacifier-free! Cold turkey - It may sound harsh, but within a few days the pacifier will no longer be missed. Cutting the nipple - Progressively enlarge the hole at the center of the pacifier’s nipple. Many children will lose interest since it does not provide the same sensation. Be careful [...]

Apr 2017

Toys and Play Scenes to Try With Your Child

By: Lindsay Barret M.S., CF-SLP Have you ever played with a toy and felt like you’re not sure what to do with it any longer? I find it helpful to think of a few simple play stories/schemas before using the toy. This is a great way to reduce pauses during play as you think of what to do next. It will help keep your child engaged and communicating! Finally, it is important to keep the child’s abilities in mind when creating a play scheme and adjust the language and play sequence to match what the child can do.    Dollhouse [...]

Apr 2017

Word Finding Activities for Kids

  By: Kyle Mutch MS CCC-SLP Whether it’s remembering someone’s name, the name of a place or identifying basic objects, everyone occasionally struggles from word finding issues. Word finding difficulties are more prevalent in children with language disorders and can lead to academic and social challenges. In this post, you’ll learn about strategies and activities that help prevent words from being stuck on the “tip of the tongue”. Common Signs of Word Finding Difficulty Extensive delay lead up to the end of the question: “Where’s my……………..paintbrush?” Using many filler words in place of specific words: “Have you seen my, um, [...]

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