This week, the TWT team is proud to present the amazing Caroline Musselwhite! Caroline shares from her 45 years of experience with low- and high-tech AAC, including the communication circle of people around an AAC user, the importance of pranks & humor when using AAC, recognizing gestures, and more.
Before the interview, Rachel shares from her webinar on telepractice and AAC and why “all children are good candidates for telepractice.” Rachel notes that telepractice can look different for different students, but all children can benefit from a qualified speech-language pathologist and/or AAC specialist facilitating communication, even if students won’t pay attention to the screen. Telepractice doesn’t have to be a direct service model - we can always coach communication partners, including parents, siblings, and other family members on how to support an AAC user's communication.
Key ideas this week:
🔑 Coaching an AAC user’s circle of support should include peers whenever possible. Training friends and siblings allows for exposure to different communication functions, and involving peers can increase an AAC user's motivation and buy-in.
🔑 “Coaching” is not necessarily the same thing as “consulting.” They are both important, but coaching can be more valuable because it involves follow up and showing communication partners how to work with AAC users, not just telling them what to do.
🔑 Gestures are an important part of multi-modal communication. Recognizing what each AAC user communicates (or can communicate) with things like facial expressions can add to the overall effectiveness of their communication.
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