Monday, January 28, 2008

Speech Therapy

Since the learning center here in town closed down Payton has been working with all new therapists. I've been impressed with all of them, but I absolutely love the speech therapist. She is always looking online for things about williams syndrome and reading books to try and figure out the best way to teach her. The problem we've had in the past with therapists that come to our home is that they would rather sit and chat with me about the latest happenings in their life than work with Payton. This is so not the case with Roseann (her ST). Roseann also sees Payton at Dawn's house (her sitter) and she noticed that Dawn always tries to tell Payton to "focus". Roseann was thrilled that Dawn had tried to come up with something at her house to help Payton try and focus on things and not get overwhelmed, but said for her therapy and with preschool next year they would like her to learn "Look, Listen, Think, Answer" (along with the signs that go with those words). Roseanne said she has other children and even adults she does this with and it works really well for them. She said Payton is just very impulsive and doesn't actually stop to look or listen to anything around her and if we can start teaching her this now, eventually she will be able to go thru the motions herself (and in preschool and school they will have the pictures of these actions at her desk to remind her to do these things). The thought of sending her to Kindergarten (even though it's a year off) terrifies me....especially after hearing some of your stories.

I didn't realize that children with ws had problems with the 'wh' questions. For instance, this weekend Bob's parents came to visit. On Sunday my dad asked Payton "Who came to see you yesterday?" and Payton repeatedly answered "What" or "That". Thanks, Noel, for letting me know that children with ws have trouble with these 'wh' questions. We've since been trying to figure out how to teach her how to understand these questions - so if any one has any ideas please let us know.


Penny said...

Keith learned look, listen, think, answer as soon as he started pre-k, so that's interesting that you are hearing the same thing. I don't know if there are any tricks, but the key with Keith is to be consistent with the words. If they use them at school, use the same ones at home. She will learn them faster and the meaning will be consistent. I also use social stories and pictures with Keith. Keith loves to look at book, so I took pictures of things in his everyday life and put them in a book so he could read it. He loves to sit and "read" it and it help him learn adn it will also calm him as they are pictures of things that he is accustomed to. I use Shutterfly to make the books.

Amy said...

One of the WS books I have addresses the "wh" issue. I will look it up for you and copy the chapter(: It talks about rephrasing your questions. Hey so far I am THRILLED with school, so don't be too nervous. Ask thetherapists what they think about the local school system.

Heather said...

Oh yeah! The Wh? questions are a huge issue! They worked so hard with Caleb on them in preschool. They have clicked for the most part. He still has trouble with the receptive end though. It's strange because he can ask me a question with 'when' in it and it is appropriate. If I ask him a when question, he has trouble with it. I guess that is probably a WS thing.??? Under, behind, beside, above,in, on, and all the spacial concepts were super hard for him as well. If I only knew then what I know now!

Every minute counts.... said...

Just a side note..sometimes giving a choice helps jog their memeories...who came yesterday? Grandpa or joe?...
Also we learned a long time ago teaching behind,beside all those spatial concepts can be made even more difficult if the words choosen are not person says 'which is small' one says 'which is little' or 'which is short'...they mean the same thing but to someone with spatial issues they are totally different concepts and confusing. I think that is really hard to accomplish...everyone on the same page but it really does make sense.


Katie said...

Its funny Heather should say that... Jai is similar he will now often use the WH questions in the right context but doesnt seem to understand them.
Jai understands WHat when you point at something like a picture 'what is that?' but not if he cant see it,like 'what did you do today?' his answer to WHen is always Yesterday and WHy is always 'cause' - his ST thinks this is likely just a learned response rather than 'getting' the point of the question.
I have always tended to rephrase the questions and the ST told me to say the question correctly first and then say it again rephrased to try and build a connection there.
He also has trouble with under/over etc and distinguishing he/she.