Questions and Answers

If you have any questions or concerns that relate to speech language pathology in any way, at any level....just ask.
I will answer them to the best of my ability on my blog.
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Saturday, December 29, 2007

Middle School: A Unique Age

For the past 12+ years I have worked as a Middle School Speech Language Pathologist. At the same time my own three children swam through the sea of middle school. I guess on some level that makes me a middle school expert. I am not sure about that but I have observed middle school intensively, worked with both regular and special education teachers, dealt with administration, observed curriculum development (and lack of it), proctered state level examinations, been involved with displinary issues and watched hormones go crazy. When it comes to middle school I can honestly say, "been there done that."

When you research Early Childhood development information is overwhelming, everyone has an opinion and free information is available in every toy store and doctors office. However, look for information/advice on anything related to the middle school aged child and your results is limited.

I am starting this blog for many reasons. First to network with other middle school speech pathologists, second to provide some practical advice to parents on working with their middle school students, third to share practical ideas around anything involving middle school students from school issues, special needs issues, fun ideas, sports and activities.
Much more to follow........


Anonymous said...

This blog intrigues me; in my searches to find information on the topic of speech therapy I have only found information on early speech development that doesn't cover information for the adolescent stage of development, one which is believed to be very crucial.

Teresa said...

Thank you for commenting on my blog. I hope to add some real content that will keep your interest. If you have any specific questions or concerns in the area of speech and language development I will be glad to help you out, let me know. Sorry it took me so long to respond. As you can probably tell I am new to this blogging stuff.

Carla said...

Hi Teresa,
I am currently working on my CF at a middle school. As far as therapy targets, do you use curriculum-based instruction?
Also, do you do any push-in in the special day classroom?

Great site, btw!

Teresa Sadowski MA/slp-ccc said...

Hi Carla,
Thank you for taking a look at my blog. You've asked me a loaded question and I will be following up with a post on this on my new updated blog which is being constructed as we speak.
It would be great in a perfect world to use curriculum materials to support therapy. However, usually the kids are lacking the underlying skills to understand a lot of the tasks requested of them in the curriculum. I like to work on those underlying skills to support them so they can learn to do the work on their own. I also find it almost impossible to know exactly what is going on in the curriculum. Especially when I only see the kids once or twice a week. I was in one school system for 10 years and my three kids went through the school. In that case I knew the curriculum well and was able to support the curriculum (and get the info right).
I don;t find the push in model very effective with more typical LD kids. I assume you are talking about more involved kids. I think push in depends on the age, situation and need. I honestly don't think a child with downs syndrome benefits as much from you being in the classroom as they would from the intensive services you could provide them one on one or in a small group. Usually teachers and aids can provide adequate language enrichment in the classroom. In either case if push in isn't part of a good co teaching model, with time to plan and consult it doesn't work. You will end up being a glorified aid. Which isn't a bad way to earn a living, easier for you but the child does not get the services they need.
I have a question for you as a CF. How much training have you had in college around RTI, push-in and coteaching models? I am finding that new regular ed teachers have no knowledge of any of those. So they are almost more difficult to work with than seasoned teachers. The face of school speech therapy has changed over the past 5 years or so. I am wondering if college coursework has also changed.
Please check out my new site "The School Speech Therapist"
Specific questions let me know. I'm always looking for ideas.

Teresa Sadowski MA/slp-ccc said...

Do you mind if I share your question on my blog?