Tuesday, October 6, 2015

The Process of Articulation Therapy

Hello Underhill Families:

Today I’m sharing information about the process of articulation therapy for those students who are seeing me for help with speech sound production.  Online I found this great visual by www.mommyspeechtherapy.com that I LOVE:

Isn’t it cool?  Let me explain a little about it…..

When children are learning to produce a new sound, we start of at the level of isolation.  This involves figuring out where to place the tongue, jaw position, and the type of airflow that is necessary.  Once established we quickly move on to the syllable level and teach the transition movement needed between the consonant and vowel.  As the child progresses they move up the hierarchy to words, phrases, sentences, stories, conversation, and then to generalized use in a variety of settings and with many different communication partners.  Some students move quickly up to the sentence level and into reading stories.  Other students take a longer time to fully acquire the motor movement pattern for the new sound and their progress through the hierarchy may take a little longer.  Children are ready for the next level on the pinwheel when they are consistently meeting at least 80% success on the present level.  This hierarchy may be different for the multiple positions a sound is in.  For example, if your child is working on initial /k/ at the sentence level, he/she may be in the early stages of learning how to produce /k/ in the medial position at the word level.  Typically sounds are easier to produce in the initial position, then the final position, and lastly the medial position.  

Please let me guide your child on what level is most appropriate for their speech sound.  I will indicate at what level your child needs to practice on the homework sheets that I share with you.

As you can see, generalizing a new sound takes a lot of hard work and many steps to achieve.  If your child is currently working on the word level, do not expect them to be using the sound correctly in sentences or when speaking with others in conversation.  Your child will get there, don’t you worry!  It just takes time!

If you have any questions about the process of articulation therapy, please do not hesitate to contact me.  As always, thank-you for partnering with me in improving your child’s speech sound skills!


Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Home practice makes all the difference!!

Happy Fall Underhill Families~

Over all of the years that I have been an SLP, those students who include home practice as part of their at home routine make the most gains in therapy.  I fully understand the after school craziness with after school activities, sports, and homework (My husband and I have to tag-team after school activities in my house too!).  How can you fit in one more thing to the evening schedule?  It is easier than you may think!    Just 5-10 minutes in the evening or before school if you have time, will help generalize what we are working on during your child’s school day.

The key, is to understand your child’s IEP goals.  The actual IEP can be overwhelming, but using a quick reference sheet called “At a Glance” helps simplify the IEP.  I can share a copy in your child’s speech/language folder for your reference.  It is my “go-to” sheet to keep me on track!

If your child is working on articulation/speech sound production, think about ways you can sneak in a few words to practice.  For example, when making dinner, think up 5-7 words that have your child’s speech sound in them that are related to your dinner prep.  For example, if your child’s sounds are /s, z/ and you’re making a salad try these words:  slice, tomatoes, lettuce, salad, dressing, cheese, and cucumbers.

Same scenario with a child who is working on language or fluency skills.  Reinforce language skills by having your child follow directions to find the ingredients, describe what each ingredient looks like (color, size, shape, etc), what category do the items belong to (understanding the difference between fruits and veggies is tricky!), compare and contrast the ingredients or dishes being prepared for that night.

Once you try it a few times, it will become easier, and before you know if you’ll be thinking like an SLP!  Other home activities to work with:  bath time, washing dishes, laundry, etc. 

I will be sharing a great resource with you to work on speech/language learning through PLAY.  It was created by SLP, Jenna Rayburn over at Speech Room News.  These parent handouts have a Fall theme and will spark ideas on ways to increase speech/language practice with your child.  They are targeted for the preschool-kindergarten population, but I think my first graders will also benefit from these!  Keep an eye out for these awesome handouts in your child's speech/language homework folder!



Thursday, August 27, 2015

Meet Your Teacher Day!!

Meet Your Teacher Day was a success!  Many of my old friends stopped in to say "Hello" and I was able to meet a few new friends too.   Looking forward to an AMAZING school year!!

Mrs. Ryback-Soucy

Monday, August 24, 2015

"POOF"....Just like that we are back in school!!

Welcome to the 2015-2016 school year!

POOF!  Just like that we are back in school!   I hope you all had a great summer just like my family did.  Isn’t it awesome not having such a tight schedule during the hot, sunny, easy days of summer?  It was the best…..

I am doing something a little different this year and created an all-about me poster to share.  Many of you know me from years past, but you may not know everything!

Some of my students/families know what to expect the first few weeks, but other may not.  During the first days of school, Underhill speech-language pathologists divide up the caseload of IEP students.  This year we are adding on many of the students from the HELP program, and will now be servicing students from preschool through 2nd grade.  In the following days we craft our schedules, which in reality is a monumental task trying to work around classroom schedules, unified arts, lunch/recess, etc!  A little magic dust always helps!

For the first week or so, I will be getting to know my students through activities, and baseline assessments.  This year I am planning therapy activities around weekly themes and will share the themes with you in the near future.

At the beginning of the school year I also send home homework folders with most of my students.  In the folders you will find my contact information card, information on practicing at home, homework tally sheets, handouts specific to your child’s speech-language needs, a contact information sheet for you to return, and whatever else I can think of to share!

I look forward to working with you and your child this school year.  Let our fun adventures begin!

Keep shining~

Mrs. Wendy Ryback-Soucy

Sunday, September 8, 2013


Welcome back to school!  I hope your summer break was filled with lots of fun adventures, beach time, and the laid-back feel that summer brings.  My summer was fabulous with no alarm clock, spending time with my girls and husband, a week long trip to Disney, the beach, the pool, and of course enjoying every last bit of the warm sunny weather!  What great memories we made.

School time is here and we are ready to rock n' roll!  I have many of my friends from last year who are now 1st and 2nd graders with quite a few new kindergarten friends to meet!  I have been crafting my schedule and this week we will dive right into our therapy sessions.  I will send home a letter with your child's therapy day(s) and times, a parent contact information sheet for you to return, along with contact information for me. I'm excited to begin this year's speech/language adventure with my little superstars!

Keep smiling!

Friday, August 2, 2013

Whoa....it's August...how did that happen?

Hi all
Hope you've had a great summer so far!  July flew by and August is upon us.  My family and I have been having a great time this summer going to the beach, sleeping late, swimming in our pool, and we just returned from a week in Disney!  I bet you all have had fun this summer too!

I have found a few resources I'd like to share.  Since it's August, I guess we need to slowly start getting back in the groove for school!  Karen over at Adaptable, Flexible, Versatile Speech Language Therapy created a cute open-ended summer citrus game board.  Who doesn't love summer lemonade stands, right?  She shares ideas for articulation, auditory processing, vocabulary, and fluency too!

Brea at Let's Talk Speech Language Pathology is fabulous!  All her materials that she has created she shares with her peeps for FREE!  Love that!  Search out her site and join her blog. One activity I found was Articulation Bugs.  She has created two versions of the bugs:  one for "k, g, s" here and one for "f, r, l, w, s-blends"  here.  How groovy is that?  I plan to print out the bugs and use cute little fly swatters to let my students "squish" the bugs while saying their speech sounds.  It will be fun..and they won't even realize they are working!

Off to enjoy the sunshine!


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Summer Speech-e Club

Hello everyone!
I just discovered a great articulation resource over at Katie Pederson's "Let's Grow Speech" website.  She has created a summer speech-e club with 9 weeks of summer themed articulation activities.  The best thing is that you get the activity delivered right to your inbox every week!  The club runs from June 17th through August 12th.  Every Monday you will receive an email with activities to target that week.  Can it get any easier than that?  If you're interested in this great resource, check it out here. Let me know what you think.