Spring is upon us and before you know it you’ll be celebrating the end of another school year. Research tells us that kids lose up to two months of learning over the summer. So it is even more vital to continue to support learning for kids with learning disabilities, speech/language, and pragmatic impairment.
Although there are many camps designed for children with various diagnoses, don’t overlook your city’s park district summer camps or activities. They offer a plethora of classes that tangentially support, receptive/expressive language and social skills. For instance, an acting class’s primary goal might be to produce a play, but it may also support social and expressive language skills.
Here are a list of possible camps based on various needs/interests:
ADHD/Autism Spectrum Disorder:
Apraxia of Speech:
Developmental Disability (spina bifida, down syndrome, cerebral palsy, autism):
Deaf and Hard of Hearing:
Individual Education Plan meetings can sometimes be intimidating for parents. While there are many professional experts in the room, it’s important to remember that you too are an expert on your child. Take the opportunity to ask questions, advocate for specific services or an increase in minutes, and clarify terminology. This article provides a quick review of the parent’s rights and key questions to ask during IEP meetings.
Hearing individuals are constantly taking in sound through both ears at lightning speed and transforming these sounds into messages that convey language. But sometimes there is a breakdown while processing and organizing these sound parts. This disruption results in a Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD) and leads to a breakdown of language processing. A person with this disorder may have difficulty following complex directions, rhyming, identifying all the sounds in a word, or identifying a compound word like “cowboy” if each word chunk was presented to different ears.
Because the symptoms stem from a breakdown at the acoustic level, an audiologist makes the CAPD diagnosis. Children as young as 6-7 can be diagnosed. The initial symptoms can appear as a pure receptive language disorder, so it is important to discuss any concerns with your speech-language pathologist. If your child does have a CAPD, coordinated therapy between audiologists and speech-language pathologists can result in improved skills.
Technology is marketed towards kids in the form of apps, games, and books. One of the growing areas is children’s books which are available online or through Kindle. This new book form, called e-books, offers a novel way of interacting with books. These options include special effects, videos, pieces within a page that can be manipulated, and even a read-aloud feature. However, research tells us that kids learn best through human interaction and without monitoring, e-books can easily become a one-way device. Reading Rockets, an education based website, has developed a great list of practical ideas to remain focused on reading and the story.