I'm thrilled to release this episode on Dolly Parton's Imagination Library, "a free book gifting program devoted to inspiring a love of reading in the hearts of children everywhere. Each month, enrolled children receive a high quality, age appropriate book in the mail, free of charge. Children receive books from birth to age five."
Join me as I interview three guests on the topic: Jeanne Smitiuch, Regional Director for the Dollywood Foundation of Canada; Chaya Kulkarni, BAA, M.Ed. Ed D, Director of Infant Mental Health Promotion (IMHP) at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto and Angela M. Neglia, Speech-Language pathologist for the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board and in private practice.
Since launching in 1995, Dolly Parton's Imagination Library has mailed over 48 million books worldwide and 1.5 million in Canada alone.
Here are some of my guests' favorite resources:
S2 Ep. 14 Neurogenic Communication Disorders: What Are They and What Can We Do About Them? With Dr. Laura Murray
In this episode, I interview Dr. Laura Murray, director of the School of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Western University, where she also serves as a professor and researcher, to talk about neurogenic communication disorders. Many people suffer from a stroke, a brain injury or other acquired neurological disorders, yet very few people know about the impact of these traumas on communication. We talk about the importance of communication and how speech and language pathologists can help. We also talk about recovery several years post injury and how it's important to have hope! Laura also shares some of her favorite resources:
The Aphasia Institute: www.aphasia.ca
The Evidence-Based Review of Moderate-to-Severe Acquired Brain Injury - ERABI
The National Aphasia Association
The Centre of Research Excellence in Brain Recovery
PsycBite - evidence-based practice resource for cognitive disorders treatments
SpeechBite - evidence-based practice resource for communication and/or swallowing disorders treatments
Laura is co-author, along with Heather Clark, of the book: Neurogenic Disorders of Language and Cognition: Evidence-based Clinical Practice. They are currently working on the third edition of this book so stay tuned!
It took a bit longer for me to get this Happy Stories episode out but I managed to piece it all together before May – “Better Speech and Hearing Month” or “Communication month” was over! You will hear the sound of my vehicle running in the background whenever I speak. That’s because my family and I were on our way to pick up our new Australian Shepherd puppy named Finley while I was working on the episode. We had a four-hour drive so I jumped on that opportunity to finalize this episode. Here’s a picture of Finley! What a cutie. I’m in love already.
I’m very pleased with how this episode turned out. I wasn’t sure what I would get and was very pumped when I heard each and every one of the stories. They sure put a smile on my face, which was the purpose of the episode. COVID-19 has brought on a lot of uncertainty and hardship for many. I hope that you can find a bit of positivity in this episode and know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
Thank you so much to everyone who contributed to this Happy Story. Let's celebrate the work of speech-language pathologists together by sharing this episode!
Here are the names of all those who contributed and some of their websites and Instagram handles:
Korynn Agnew @korynn_aslp
Becky McArthur at We Communicate www.wecommunicateslp.com @we_communicate
Desiree Rusch www.slptalkwithdesiree.com or www.shopslptalk.com @slptalk
Alyssa Gibson @alyssagib_ @special_needs_siblings
Kassy at @slp4lyfe
Stephen Kneece @speechandlanguagesongs www.speechandlanguagesongs.com
Carol Baingana @communicaide
Sara Dubreuil-Piché @Sararosepiche
Speech Simplified @speech.simplified
Here is the link to Dylan’s full speech using his communication device:
Also, here is the link to the phonics song I shared during the episode:
S2 Ep.10 Robust Vocabulary Instruction in French for Anglophone Parents: Chin faces with Sarah and Julianne
In this episode, Sarah, Julianne and I put our creativity to the test and had a lot of fun! To get the most out of this episode, you must first listen to Episode 5 of Season 2 in which I explain the importance of teaching children a rich vocabulary to help them better understand the subjects taught in school, especially at the junior and secondary levels, and to better understand the literary vocabulary found in books.
The goal of this episode was really to demonstrate that it is possible to teach a rich, level 2 vocabulary, even when fun and silly activities are chosen. The chin-face is an activity that will surely make the whole family laugh. Even during difficult times, such as the COVID-19 pandemic that we are currently experiencing, it is important for children to have fun and have a few laughs. The vocabulary selected for this activity is as follows:
Créatif ou créative: Creative
S'allonger : to lie down
Suspendre : Suspend
À l'envers : Upside down
Peindre : Paint
Rigoler : giggle
Divertir : Entertain
Vêtir : Clothe
Trait facial : Facial trait or feature
(Remember that the direct translation does not always give a level 2 word in English, but trust that it is a level 2 word in French).
Items required for the activity :
Black eyeliner or costume make-up (e.g. Halloween make-up)
White page to draw the face
A phone or a smart tablet to record the face chin (N.B. it is important to film with the device upside down for it to work).
A good imagination
A good sense of humour
You can search Google engines to find ideas for chin-faces:
Here are the steps for this activity:
During the episode, Sarah mimics the voice of Miranda Sings, a fictional character you can find on YouTube. Here is the link for those who are curious. Here are also some videos of our chin faces:
S2 Ep. 8 Robust Vocabulary Instruction in French for Anglophone Parents: Raft challenge with Sarah & Julianne
S2 Ep.6 Robust Vocabulary Instruction for Anglophone Parents: Banana and Chocolate Chip Muffins with Sarah and Julianne
During this episode, I invite you into my kitchen to show you how to teach your child robust vocabulary words in French while following a delicious banana and chocolate chip muffin recipe. You can find the link to the French recipe here and the English recipe here.
Nine words from Level 2 (see S2 Ep.5 for more details) were targeted during this activity:
Moelleux: soft or chewy
However, I do mention other level 2 words that can be selected during the episode.
Have fun during this activity! Sarah and Julianne had a lot of fun and they sure enjoyed the treats!
This and future episodes have been recorded during these moments of social distancing due to COVID-19, to help you enrich your children's vocabulary while they are at home. It's not rocket science! You can do it and have fun doing it! This first episode is for you, the parents, to explain the different levels of vocabulary and how you can easily enrich your children's vocabulary during daily activities. Future episodes can be listened to WITH your children to introduce them to the new French vocabulary words targeted during the episodes. My two daughters, Sarah and Julianne, accompany me during the episodes to demonstrate how this teaching can be done. I hope you will enjoy these activities which vary: recipes, hiking, crafts, board games and others.
I am referring to the book by Beck et al. (2013). Here is a link to this book if you are interested.
I also mention other episodes which explains more about Developmental Language Disorder. Episodes 2 and 10 touch on this topic. You can also find more information here.
March is Brain Injury Awareness month and I am thrilled to be able to release an episode on the topic! This podcast will have you rethink the way you see social communication and pragmatics. Join me as I interview Dr. Lyn Turkstra. Lyn is a speech-language pathologist by training, and her research focuses on links between cognitive function and social communication in individuals with acquired brain injury. I was very excited to have her as a guest on this podcast. You will quickly discover her breadth of knowledge and experience in this vast and often obscure field.
Lyn starts off the episode by talking about a review paper that was published in 2017 from a joint committee from ASHA and the American Psychological Association (SLPs and neuropsychologists) which is a bit of a primer for what SLPs do in terms of pragmatics in relation to other health professionals and how communication goes beyond vocabulary and syntax. Here is the link to this paper: Pragmatic communication abilities in children and adults: implications for rehabilitation professionals
Lyn talks about a study she co-authored about pragmatics and makes reference to the “Lack of practice” problem. Here is the article:
Warner-Czyz, A. D., Evans, D., Turkstra, L., Scheppele, M., Song, C., & Evans, J. L. Effect of auditory status on visual emotion recognition in adolescents. Cochlear Implants International.
During the episode, Lyn talks about a tookit that can be used to assess the environment of those who have dementia and who live in long term care facilities. Here is the link to that resource:
Jennifer Brush, Margaret Calkins, Carrie Bruce and Jon Sanford; what supports communication environment?
Environmental communication assessment toolkit (ECAT)
I also make reference to the Episode with Tanya Nesterenko, SLP and executive coach. You can find it here.
Lyn talks about a study by Meulenbroek, Bowers and Turkstra (2016). The focus of this study was to examine successful return to sustained employment after brain injury. They discovered that social communication skills was number the number one skill required for sustained employment:
Characterizing common workplace communication skills for disorders associated with traumatic brain injury: A qualitative study.
We also talked about available resources for anyone who might be interested in finding out more about social cognition, pragmatics, brain injury and communication. Here are some of the resources discussed during this episode:
Social Cognition: Populations at risk, Assessment and Intervention.
Lyn is also the co-author of a book that offers guidelines on how to teach new things to people with memory problems. The book also provides strategies for executive functions, but the focus is on memory. The authors are currently working on a new edition of the book which should be released next year. Sohlberg, Turkstra, & Wilson (2011). Optimizing Cognitive Rehabilitation: Effective Instructional Methods. The Guilford Press. New York.
Additional resources :
Paul, R., Norbury, C. F., & Gosse, C. (2018). Language Disorders from Infancy through Adolescence. Listening, Speaking, Reading, Writing, and Communication, 5th edition. St. Louis : MS, Mosby Elsevier.
Murray, L. & Clark, H. (2014). Neurogenic Disorders of Language and Cognition: Evidence-based Clinical Practice; Second Edition. Pro Ed
S. McDonald, L. Togher, & C. Code (Eds) (2014). Social Communication Disorders Following Traumatic Brain Injury (2nd Edition). Psychology Press: London.
Anderson, V. & Beauchamp, M. Developmental social neuroscience and childhood brain insult: Implications for theory and practice. Guilford Press: New York.
If you would like to hear more about Dr. Lyn Turkstra’s work, she has a webinar coming up in the fall that you could tune-in to:
Oct 14 2020
SAC Webinar: Intervention for Adolescents and Adults with Cognitive-Communication Disorders after Acquired Brain Injury
I'm very excited about this brand new season of The Parlé Podcast and I'm happy to kick start it with Megan Sutton from British Colombia, Canada! Megan is a speech-language pathologist and the director and app designer for Tactus Therapy, a leading developer of apps founded in 2011 for adult speech and language therapy. She has worked with adults in acute and various other settings with acquired communication and swallowing disorders with an emphasis on the assessment and treatment of aphasia. Join us as Megan talks to us about how these apps can be used to help bridge the gap between the work that is done in therapy sessions with a speech-language pathologist and home practice for people with aphasia. However, we mention during the episode that many of these apps can be used with preteens and teens as well.
Here is a link to the apps on the Apple store. However, you can find all the information you need for each app on the Tactus Therapy website.
To hear more about how to incorporate apps into your therapy or your rehabilitation, Megan has two workshops available on Medbridge which can be found at:
During the podcast, we talk about a very useful resource for speech-language pathologists, "Setting Goals for Aphasia Therapy". Click here to download your very own copy of the e-book.
Megan talks about the Aphasia Recovery Connection (ARC) group. More information can be found here. They also have a Facebook page with over 8400 members to help provide support for people who have aphasia and their family members.
Aphasia Access is also a great website if you want to find out more about the Life Participation Approach to Aphasia.
During the episode, I refer to the episode with Barbara Collier from CDAC (although I mess up the long form of that acronym during the recording). Here is the link to that episode.
A few documentaries on Aphasia or acquired brain injury are discussed and I'm happy to share with you that they can easily be accessed:
Aphasia The Movie
My Beautiful Broken Brain
Join me for this episode as I talk to Dr. Lisa Archibald, a speech and language pathologist and university professor/researcher at Western University in London, Ontario. Lisa talks about the importance of work memory for everyday tasks at home and at school as well as how it might be difficult to differentiate a working memory disorder from a language disorder. Lisa discusses some strategies that parents, speech-language pathologists and teachers may want to use with children in order to help them with their memory. She talks about how some tasks may put a high demand on a child's working memory or cognitive load and how that same task might be easy for another child.
You can find out more about Lisa's Language and Working Memory lab by visiting her website. Lisa was also a guest speaker on TVO Parents. You can watch the short video clip here:
Lisa talks about important teacher accommodations that might be part of a student's Individual Education Plan (IEP) such as the use of visual cues, written cards or reminders, pre-teaching vocabulary, salience, etc.
Some of Lisa's favorite resources on this topic are available here:
#WesternDLD2 projects: https://www.uwo.ca/fhs/lwm/teaching/dld2.html
in particular this YouTube video provides great information on Working memory.
The Collaborative Classroom is also a great website.
This thesis has a lot of very useful information for teachers and educational professionals: "How do teachers teach students with working memory impairments in the regular classroom? A grounded theory approach"
As well as the following DLDandMe blog and the article: Working memory and language learning: A review, both authored by Lisa.
Chantal Mayer-Crittenden, Speech-Language Pathologist and researcher, hosts a bevy of guests on the topic of communication at large.