TRADITIONAL SPEECH THERAPY:
Traditional speech therapy for children of all ages and diagnoses consists of assessments using the Oral and Written Language Scale-II, Preschool Language Scale, Structured Photographic Articulation Test, and others in evaluation of speech and language skills. Skills targeted include articulation and increased speech intelligibility, fluency of speech, expressive and receptive language, understanding and using figurative language skills, beginning reading skills, reading comprehension, compensatory strategies to increase organization, correct use of grammar in spoken language and writing, social or pragmatic language skills, and more.
AUGMENTATIVE AND ALTERNATIVE COMMUNICATION:
AAC evaluations for speech generating devices are offered through K1ds Count. Speech generating devices are often covered through insurance. The evaluation covers the assessment including consideration of multiple communication modalities as well as help with submitting all necessary paperwork to insurance to receive the device.
K1ds Count became first LAMP Center of Excellence in Indiana on January 9th, 2018. Approximately 50% of children within the K1ds Count ABA program utilize LAMP. Language Acquisition through Motor Planning (LAMP) is a therapeutic approach based on neurological and motor learning principles. The goal is to give individuals who are nonverbal or have limited verbal abilities a method of independently and spontaneously expressing themselves in any setting utilizing a speech generating device. At K1ds Count, speech, occupational, and ABA therapists are trained in LAMP by the Center of AAC and Autism. Trials with other forms of AAC, including Proloquo2go, PECS, and ASL are also assessed during an AAC evaluation.
CHILDHOOD APRAXIA OF SPEECH:
Apraxia of speech is commonly seen in children diagnosed with autism, but may also be diagnosed without the presence of other diagnoses. At K1ds Count, our SLPs will utilize the Kaufman Speech to Language Protocol (K-SLP) to evaluate and create a treatment plan for children with apraxia of speech. The K-SLP focuses upon the child’s motor-speech skills, successive approximation to increase forming combinations of sounds and words, utilization of multi-sensory input to impact acquisition of specific sound sequences, and establishing augmentative communication until the child is a vocal communicator.
Social groups focus on a variety of skills such as eye contact and joint attention, parallel play and turn taking skills, requesting from friends, answering and asking questions, reading body language, listening skills and following group directions, proximity, complimenting/receiving compliments, being a good sport, initiating and exiting a conversation, joining a group, and self-regulation and coping skills within a group setting. The Superflex Social Skills Curriculum as well as role-playing, games, crafts, cards, interactional play, and Internet activities are used to enhance the acquisition and performance of social skills. Currently, each child within the ABA program participates in social group. K1ds Count also has a teen group that meets one evening per week.
Speech therapists help to design and lead LAMP group. Children who use speech generating devices to communicate, come together to play, learn, and communicate utilizing LAMP. Many children need a bridge to vocal language, and LAMP provides a functional means of language with endless potential to grow.
Speech therapists also help to plan and organize Language and Learning Group. This is a 2-hour group that consists of children from our ABA program, outpatient program, and peer models. It simulates a classroom like environment and focuses on expansion of speech and language skills as well as spontaneous use of language with friends.
Lastly, our speech therapists come together with occupational therapy to lead a food group. Our food group is based in the SOS approach. Many children with autism spectrum disorders present with feeding challenges. The goal of the SOS approach is to increase the child’s comfort level with particular foods by exploring and learning about the taste, texture, smell, and consistency of food. It allows a child to interact with food in a playful, non-stressful way, beginning with the ability to tolerate the food in the room and in front of him/her; then moving on to touching, kissing, and eventually tasting and eating foods.