Blogjam SLPs and audiologists are blogging about their experiences and discoveries. Check out some of their posts. Blogjam
Blogjam  |   May 01, 2016
Author Notes
Article Information
Blogjam   |   May 01, 2016
The ASHA Leader, May 2016, Vol. 21, 18-19. doi:10.1044/leader.BGJ.21052016.18
The ASHA Leader, May 2016, Vol. 21, 18-19. doi:10.1044/leader.BGJ.21052016.18
Who Throws There?
Small children are going to throw food—it’s a fact. But when is it excusable as a learning step and when is it a negative behavior that needs to be addressed? SLP Cindy Morrison, author of the Chew Chew Mama blog, offers some insights and tips for when feeding looks more like a food fight.
Morrison breaks down developmental milestones to point out where throwing food naturally fits in. When a child is younger than 2 years old, there are a number of explanations. But past that age, any tossed food is usually intentional, Morrison writes, and parents often reinforce the behavior by throwing the food away themselves—making it disappear, which rewards the child because that’s what they wanted.
She suggests a different approach. “Calm and consistent behavioral strategies will eliminate throwing. When your child throws food, your response should simply, calmly and sweetly be, ‘Oh no! You made a bad choice. That’s so sad. Now you have to clean it up.’
“Calmly and gently use hand-over-hand to help your little one pick up the thrown object and place it in the right place (garbage can, table, counter). While doing it, you can say, ‘It’s not fun to pick up food off the floor; we keep food at the table.’ When the task is finished, your child should go back into their seat and be given a replacement for what they dropped.”
An Auditory/Language Puzzle
Stella Fulman and Zhanneta Shapiro, audiologists and founders of their Audiology Island practice, break down the basic signs of a condition that can be difficult to recognize—auditory processing disorder (APD)—in a recent blog post on their website.
“The simplest way to explain what defines an auditory processing disorder is to realize the role of the central nervous system, or CNS, in APD. The CNS malfunctions and causes an uncoordinated relationship between the ears and the nervous system’s ability to fully process sounds and language,” they write.
Although APD is complex and often difficult to diagnose, Fulman and Shapiro suggest a detailed assessment of any child with these symptoms: “difficulty discerning words in a noisy environment, problems following directions, issues differentiating between speech and other sounds, problems spelling or reading, and understanding information in the classroom.”
Best Behavior
A good behavior management system is a must for all school-based SLPs. Recently, a group of SLP bloggers got together on their weekly online SLP Blab show to talk about their best techniques and tips. Jenn Alcorn recapped the discussion for her Crazy Speech World blog.
Beyond recommending some reading from ASHA SIG 16’s Perspectives on School Based-Issues (, Alcorn lists some of the group’s favorite methods:
  • Set clear expectations: Post class rules and make sure “your students know what is expected.”

  • Be flexible: “Learn to pick your battles!”

  • Use visuals: “Lots of our kids have trouble with understanding language, so providing the visuals they need is important.”

  • Think creatively: Provide an opportunity for movement, especially for kids who need sensory breaks.

  • Set limits: “It is OK to say no.”

  • Find what the student likes: “Use their interests to motivate them to do their best.”

Fixes for Fidgeting
Those with fidgety kids in their caseload, this one’s for you: Speechy Musing’s Shannon Lisowe shares how she handles her “little movers” in a recent blog post.
“They are constantly grabbing things that are on the table, inappropriately folding papers, getting distracted by the window, my toys, the table, their hair, their clothing, and really just everything,” she writes.
Her top-five favorite tools:
  • A “fidget jar”: Stuff it full of small toys or items that children can use to keep their hands busy throughout your session. Think desk toys, but the kid equivalent.

  • Chair bands: These thick rubber bands—connected between the two front legs of a chair a few inches off the floor—give kids something to occupy their feet when they participate in activities at a desk.

  • Exercise/balance discs: They’re a great solution for students who like to tip and rock in their seats, Lisowe says. “It fits perfectly on my chairs and ALL of my students love it! I leave them slightly deflated so students can move around quite a bit on them.”

  • Visual schedules: With some Velcro assistance, groups can track completion of their tasks, which keeps them focused.

  • Movement breaks: From a stack of “movement challenge” cards, Lisowe’s students take turns choosing things like “crab walks” or “arm circles” between activities.

Submit a Comment
Submit A Comment
Comment Title

This feature is available to Subscribers Only
Sign In or Create an Account ×
May 2016
Volume 21, Issue 5