Thursday, August 05, 2010

Chad Bingham: Assistive Communication Devices

Saturday morning conference attendees were treated to a great presentation of assistive speech devices and how they can help non-verbal kids like my daughter, Whitney. Here are some thoughts I captured during the presentation:

Speech devices can vary from the PECS system with pictures on index cards up to a portable computerized speech device.

With computerized devices the child uses it enough that it becomes motor memory similar to typing skills.

The goal is for the child to say what they want when they want int and have spontaneous communication.

A team can assess a child’s need for a device. This is often done through the school system.

Symbol systems have pictures. When the child presses the apple picture the device says apple.

Unity is the software in all PRC brand devices. It runs on the philosophy of vocabulary, stable icon locations, and a rule based approach to speech. It doesn’t have time-consuming navigation routines.

AAC devices don’t get used because:
• It’s not customized right
• The child doesn’t understand it yet.
• They seem to think it’s not important
• They get what they want without it. Parents speak for them.
• Kids don’t want to look different.
• They speak well enough that some will understand them without the device.

Use the device to:
• Request an action or object
• Get attention
• Greeting
• Asking for or sharing information

To encourage use:
• Make it accessible
• Load appropriate vocabulary
• Create a learning environment for the child
• Use appropriate activities

Use the language activity monitor at school. It logs usage so parents can see if the device is used at school.

The cost of a device that does speech synthesis can run up to $7,500. Insurance providers will cover up to 80%.


Unknown said...

Would you like more specific information because I have a daughter with 1p36 syndrome and many other symptoms are different and the same as described however she spoke with two years was three and has a very large vocabulary but I have doubts as to treat what should be done should be done. I'm from Brazil and here we do not have professionals conheção this syndrome. If you want to contact me my email is Thank you.

Nate said...

Hi Tiago,

Thanks for posting. I'm really glad your daughter is doing so well. So many times I've wished my daughter Whitney could talk. It's tough to get our little ones the care they need and it sounds especially tough in Brazil. If you want to, there is a really big and active Facebook group where I get a lot of good 1p36 Deletion Support. You'll find it if you search groups for 1p36 Deletion Awareness and Support. I hope you can join. I know there are quite a few members worldwide.

Cordial greetings from your friends in Utah!
The Hansons