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when will my child be done with speech language therapy

When Will My Child Be Done With Speech-Language Therapy?

Society as a whole is goal-oriented; as human beings we want to have a plan for the future. The unknown is anxiety-provoking, and people want straight answers. Therefore it is no surprise that a common question when a child is first recommended for speech-language therapy is how long will my child need speech-language therapy? The tough answer to this challenging question is there is no scientific way to determine a child’s timeline for speech-language therapy. However, there are a several components to speech-language therapy that can facilitate greater progress in therapy, possibly resulting in faster discharge.

These Components Will Help Determine How Long a Child Will Need Speech-Language Therapy:

  • Early identification is a key component for success in intervention. It is highly recognized that when speech and language disorders when will my child be done with speech language therapyare identified and treated as early as possible, there is a better prognosis. Developmental milestones can be helpful in identifying children who may be in need of speech-language intervention.
  • With any speech-language disorder there is a spectrum of severity that can occur. Often with a more severe speech-language disorder, therapy will be more intensive and may require a longer treatment period. Looking at the percentile ranking of your child’s score on a standardized test is helpful at determining where your child’s skills are in relation to the typical population.
  • There are several components of a therapy plan which can affect the rate of progress. Receiving consistent and frequent therapy can both positively impact a child’s progress. The greater amount of time a child is spent working on a skill, the faster that skill is likely to improve. Additionally, completing home programs or home activities given by your child’s therapist will facilitate carryover of the child’s targeted skills into other environments.
  • Lastly, every child is different in their areas of need for speech-language therapy. Therefore, each child’s therapy approach will be unique to him or her. A child’s diagnosis will ultimately affect what skills will be targeted and how many target areas there will be. Concomitant issues may also affect a child’s therapeutic approach, resulting in additional goal areas to target through therapy. The presence of multiple diagnoses does not necessarily mean slow progress, but may correlate with the reality that there may be more goals to be met before discharge.

This list is by no means all-encompassing of components which could facilitate faster progress in speech-language therapy. Overall, it is important that the child, family and clinician become a team to target that child’s speech and language needs. Then as a team, goals can be addressed positively in a variety of environments and communication situations.

Click here for more help understanding a speech-language evaluation.






speech therapy carryove activities

Speech-Language Carryover Activities

 

 

 

Speech-language pathologists (SLPs) and other clinicians will often give clients homework to complete before the next session in order to increase carryover. Carryover, or the idea that skills learned in the clinic will be transferred or generalized out of the clinic, is important in a variety of therapeutic disciplines. Increased practice and more time spent focusing on a skill will improve a child’s abilities and rate of mastery.

Carryover activities:

  • Homework: Completing homework sent home by a therapist is a great way to spend structured time practicing a skill. Oftentimes, this homework will include words or sentences with target sounds for children working on articulation. Homework may including writing prompts for older clients, or worksheets to practice goals outside of the clinic.
  • Book reading: Books can be a great way to increase carryover. For children working on language goals, possibly including sentence structure, wh-questions, sequencing, auditory comprehension and a variety of other goals, SLPs may recommend that parents simply read to their children. During book time, parents will be encouraged to stop frequently and ask children questions about characters, events, etc. This can help children improve their language skills and be a fun activity for parents and children!
  • Craft projects: Parents can use craft projects to increase carryover outside of the clinic. Working on crafts can help target following directions, appropriate sentence structure, as well as focus on a specific theme to increase vocabulary.
  • Modeling: Parents simply modeling their own appropriate speech and language for children can help children work toward their goals. If parents, for example, practice using a slow rate, children will learn to copy their parents’ rate of speech which may increase intelligibility.
  • Recasting: Parents can recast their child’s utterance by correcting and emphasizing changes for any errors noted. For example, if a child says, “he walking,” parents can recast by saying, “You’re right! He IS walking.”

Helping children with carryover outside of the clinic will help progress through goals in the clinic. Frequently working on target words/sounds and other areas throughout the week will help children improve faster and meet their goals!