I work as a speech-language pathologist (SLP) in a Title 1 special education elementary school in the Bronx. I serve students in grades 1-5 with diverse communication needs. My school's classroom ratios are designated for students with Autism, Intellectual Disability, Down Syndrome, Speech and Language Impairment, and/or multiple disabilities. Ultimately, my students' teachers and I hope to give each and every child a way to communicate meaningfully, which would allow him or her to participate in everyday activities of daily living. For my non-verbal students, I collaborate with classroom teachers to develop our students' academic and social skills through the use of Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC). Beginning learners use their symbols and devices to express their basic wants and needs, while more advanced learners practice commenting, turn-taking, answering questions, and expressing their joy, lust for learning and creativity!
LAMP - Words for Life is a communication app that allows nonverbal and/or unintelligible students to express themselves using Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) via picture symbols and voice generation. A key strategy to teaching students how to use LAMP is Aided Language Stimulation (ALS). ALS is a strategy where a communication partner teaches the meaning of symbols on a device and models language by combining his or her own verbal output with a selection of vocabulary/picture symbols on the AAC device. As an SLP working with nonverbal and/or unintelligible students using LAMP, it is imperative that I have access to the program to become a proficient user who can model use for her students and facilitate their learning.
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