In my Linguistics course entitled “Language Acquisition and Development” I learned about the spectrum of language development for infants and children otherwise. More specifically, I learned that though language development follows a common pattern in many children, there are always different development patterns in some. This understanding has allowed me to be conscious and considerate of learning and language spectrums as they may be affected by things like speech impediments and autism. It is especially important to be conscious of the ways in which therapy is provided. This was important for my internship because all of the sessions I sit in on are speech therapy sessions with children.
Many of these children are on the Autism spectrum, and their parents seek out speech therapy to aid in strategies to aid their child’s language development. As stated by Beverly Vicker, M.S., CCC-SLP, though students with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) may be verbal they may have verbal and communication challenges. Vicker continues on to describe how this may look for these individuals in the article below: https://www.iidc.indiana.edu/irca/articles/social-communication-and-language-characteristics.html
Sitting in on many of speech therapy sessions, I see both the general and individualized approach that my supervisor and her externs take. They are filled with questions and creative tasks that serve as markers to check for the child’s development or level of development. In addition, not every child comes to therapy for the same reason. While some may be having social communication issues others may be having trouble pronouncing glides.
Because My Speech Matters is a small private practice, I know that the level of attention and care they give to every individual who comes for a session is significant. As mentioned in my previous post, some of the children that get therapy from My Speech Matters receive it because their school does not provide it. Knowing these things allows me to approach my internship with clarity of my own goals.
I know that I want to be able to provide services to those who may not be getting served in the way they should be. In addition, I know that I want to be able to aid in someone’s path to wellbeing and clarity. This would be specifically by helping them reach acceptance of the things that may be impacting their language development and by working with them to find avenues where this thing that blocked them becomes a source of power.