Surprise Speech! 4 things you might not know about a Speech Therapist’s role
We often get told how much fun our job looks, and those people couldn’t be more correct! Our days are made up of rewarding moments, assisting you and your loved ones to achieve milestones, big or small. What you don’t see is our ‘Behind the Scenes’ moments, where we spend time tailoring therapy and resources to help get you to those milestone moments. What do these ‘Behind the Scenes’ moments look like? Well, come back stage with me and let’s give you a sneak peek.
1. We develop resources.
Need a communication board? We can do that! Our speech therapists often spend time making individualised communication boards that relate to a child’s favourite toy, a teenager’s favourite movie, or an adult’s favourite community activity.
Focusing on articulation for home practice? We’ve got you covered! Our speech therapists make age-appropriate articulation cards and can provide a plethora of fun and interactive ways to integrate them into your day.
Working on early literacy skills? Don’t you worry. Our team can sort you out with some initial sound identification cards or sight words cards, and can fashion them into a competitive maze or game of hide and seek!
We are regularly developing therapy resources that are tailored according to our client and their goals, and we can absolutely develop them to send home with you, too.
2. We train you.
Are you a parent, teacher, therapist or support staff member? Or do you have a team of all of the above? Well, let’s get together and share some knowledge! Our therapists pride themselves on being active members of multidisciplinary teams, and we know that goals are best met when working together.
Key word sign? Communication boards? Home program? Or chatting about how best to support communication needs? These are all discussions we love. Why? Because we are your communication advocate! As speech therapists, we think about you all the time but might only be lucky enough to see you once a week, if that. The best way to reach a goal is to be practicing every day, so let’s train you to be able to do what we do! Our number one goal is to do ourselves out of a job because you have achieved your goals.
3. We write social stories.
As can be quite common amongst children, teens and adults who experience social-emotional or intellectual challenges, certain situations can be really quite overwhelming. As speech therapists, we can write a narrative that helps a client understand and navigate those scenarios. These are particularly useful for people who are moving house or interstate, children transitioning between school, or those who need to understand grief and loss. Social stories are also beneficial for explaining social communication and expectations such as answering questions, giving personal space, greeting others, making eye contact and keeping our hands to ourselves.
4. We develop and monitor your goals.
As we mentioned, we are thinking about our clients all the time – sometimes they even show up in our dreams! That’s how passionate we are about you. Whenever we have a moment or two, we are going through our client’s goals, ensuring that they are relevant and up to date. There is one of the reasons that goal setting is part of our SpeechEase Steps to Success procedure; They are our steps to achieving success with you, and hold each client, parent and therapist accountable to making progress! We monitor these goals with you, and make sure that every session is tailored accordingly.
Although much of our time is spent in the clinic or in the home working one on one with clients, there are certainly other ways in which we can support you. We are dedicated to you, your communication and your success.
If you would like a resource to be developed, if you would like staff, parent or educator training, or if you require a social story to be written, please contact your SpeechEase speech pathologist. Alternatively, if you would like to book an initial appointment so you can discuss goals and your pathway to improved communication and swallowing, please call SpeechEase on 0423 334 144.