Today we went out for a long walk.
Dylan led us around the shops and followed a shopping list as a task set by his SLT. The idea was to see how Dylan follows a shopping list as a communication target but to be honest this is something we have been working on anyway.
Dylans speech therapy is very disjointed with the NHS targets being based on targets already achieved through previous work, doesn’t make sense but that’s a whole ‘nother story!
Modelling today included plans for the shopping list. Requesting help with opening a can of drink and using the iPad to request that an activity finishes. Dylan requests this verbally but his articulation is so poor he pleads for ‘finished’ but often no one knows that this is what he is saying. Being able to request that something stops is definitely something that we will continue to model for Dylan to be able to fully be understood.
This is it. We completed 21 days of making effort to model communication and support Dylan use of the iPad.
We’ve used modelling in the last 3 weeks as an experience to discuss cooking, to share books, to ask for help, to explain whats just happened, we have discussed the time of day and made plans for the future as well as reflecting on past events. Modelling has been used to chat about meals eaten, trips out and to partake in family activities.
Dylan has developed his communicative efforts to a wider audience. To relatives, the dog, shop staff, peers; both using the iPad and verbally. He has used the iPad to correctly label items that we haven’t taught. Dylans ABA background has always been very prescriptive; thats how Dylan’s always learned. I feel empowered by the fact that there appears to be a new developing ability to absorb information around him. And I tried to spend a day being nonverbal: The most frustrating, disempowering and vulnerable 4 hours that gave me an insight into Dylans world.
This experince has taught me about the need for space and time so that Dylan is able to make the correct response for him. I am now aware may just be repeating the last word he heard rather than actually making that choice, by giving Dylan adequate time and the iPad he is then able to consider his options and reply to the question or choice without having to find the correct words verbally.
And this whole process, ultimatly, is about giving Dylan a voice.
New words- 10
Total words- 217.
(Thats amazing, 217 new words!!)