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  • The ASHA National Office’s all-remote operations status is extended to at least June 12.
  • ASHA travel ban for staff and volunteers is extended to at least July 31 with the continuing proviso to not book any ASHA-related travel past that date for the time being.

Innovative Methods for Preschool Assessment, Collaboration, and Treatment

February 19–March 2, 2020 | Online Conference

Session Descriptions

These pre-recorded lectures are on-demand and last only an hour, so you can listen to them whenever time permits! 

Distinguishing Language Delays From Chronic Language Disorders
Rhea Paul, PhD, CCC-SLP

It is difficult to know in young children whether language delays are transient or will lead to chronic delays and cascading difficulties in academic language, reading, and writing. This session will explore assessment methods that make use of evidence regarding the difference between delay and disorder to allow clinicians to make this distinction in daily practice.

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • list the characteristics of language disorders in preschool children that contribute to long-term risk
  • choose assessment instruments, both standardized and observational, that will be useful in distinguishing between delays and disorders
  • explain to parents and teachers how we distinguish between language delay and disorder

Incorporating Phonological Awareness Into Intervention for Childhood Apraxia of Speech
Amy Skinder-Meredith, PhD, CCC-SLP

Young children with childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) are at risk for difficulties in phonological awareness, which impedes their early reading skills. Incorporating phonological awareness into speech treatment for children with CAS can improve their motor speech as well as early literacy skills. This session will discuss the use of dynamic tactile temporal cueing (DTTC) to achieve the correct sequencing of articulatory gestures and explore how to incorporate phonics and phonological awareness instruction for pre-practice and correction of speech sound errors. This holistic approach allows the child to achieve better speech intelligibility while receiving explicit instruction to support a foundation for early reading skills.

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • implement DTTC in intervention
  • incorporate print into stimuli for target phrases
  • utilize phonics for explicit corrective feedback for speech sound errors

Feeding, Swallowing, and Food Selectivity in Preschoolers
Donna K. Edwards, MA, CCC-SLP, BCS-S

Feeding and swallowing difficulties have a significant impact on children’s health, well-being, development, and educational potential. These disorders affect a child’s ability to engage in mealtimes, limiting socialization opportunities, nutritional intake, hydration, and growth patterns. This session will discuss typical and atypical development of feeding patterns as well as how to differentiate between feeding and swallowing difficulties and how to identify any overlap in the two. The speaker will also describe behavior management techniques to help address feeding challenges. Finally, the session will explore how to determine appropriate goals and supports to optimize functional outcomes to benefit the preschooler and his/her family.  

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • discuss typical and atypical development of feeding patterns in the preschool population
  • differentiate between feeding and swallowing disorders and discuss the possible overlap in presentation
  • state three food-related properties that increase feeding challenges for preschool children and their caregivers
  • identify and discuss three behavioral management techniques to enhance food acceptance in preschool children who demonstrate food selectivity

Assessing Preschool Children With Challenging Behaviors
Tatyana Elleseff, MA, CCC-SLP

Effectively assessing preschool children with emotional and behavioral difficulties can be challenging for SLPs. Typical testing protocols do not always work well with this population, meaning many preschool children with behavioral and emotional needs are not appropriately identified in order to receive much-needed speech-language and other services. This session will explore the connections among social, emotional, behavior, and communication difficulties as well as discuss formal and informal assessment that are appropriate for this population.

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • explain the connection between late language development and social-emotional functioning
  • describe manifestations of emotional and behavioral difficulties in young children with language deficits
  • identify formal and informal assessments relevant to preschoolers

Parent-Inclusive Approaches to Early Language Intervention
Elaine Weitzman, MEd

Including families in their child’s early language intervention is best practice, but it is not always easy. Parents may seem reluctant to participate or have difficulty learning the skills required to facilitate their child’s language development. This session will demonstrate how to include parents in their preschooler’s language intervention from the start, including assessment and goal-setting. Using an adult education framework, the speaker will present a teaching-learning cycle that enables parents to learn to apply responsive interaction strategies consistently to everyday interactions with their child. The session will include videos to demonstrate collaborative goal-setting, group parent training, and one-to-one parent coaching.

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • list four adult education principles that should be integrated into parent training
  • explain how these four adult education principles are translated into learning components in a parent training program or one-to-one coaching model
  • describe a collaborative process for setting goals with parents

Augmentative and Alternative Communication for Preschoolers With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Sandra M. Grether, PhD, CCC-SLP

Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) need to become effective communicators with multiple communication partners and across multiple settings. This session will address how to use evidence-based core word augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) systems and strategies to facilitate functional and social communication skills with preschool-age children with ASD who are either verbal or nonverbal.

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • list ways to increase communication opportunities for young children with ASD
  • describe ways to provide young children with ASD with appropriate supports and cues to increase functional communication across settings
  • describe and analyze the features and components of published core word systems and resources and match them to the needs of particular children with ASD

Literacy-Based Interventions for Preschoolers With Speech Sound Disorders
Keli Richmond, MS, CCC-SLP

Phonological awareness is a foundational skill for successful reading and spelling. Preschoolers with speech sound disorders are at risk for deficits in phonological awareness, and this risk is multiplied by factors such as language disorders and low socioeconomic status. Focusing on orthographic (printed) cues, this session will discuss intervention techniques that improve speech intelligibility in preschoolers while simultaneously building phonological awareness.

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • implement strategic interventions that build phonological awareness and remediate speech sound disorders concurrently
  • explain the role of the reading processors (orthographic, phonological, meaning, and context) in literacy development

Service Delivery Considerations in the Preschool Environment
Julie O'Brien-Smith, MS, CCC-SLP

How do speech-language pathologists provide services in a changing and challenging preschool world? Utilizing multiple service delivery options in the preschool environment can increase relationships with staff and promote progress in students. This session will explore service delivery, including practical interventions and ideas to use in various in-classroom models.

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • explain how in-class services can benefit preschool students and staff
  • collaborate and plan a session with a preschool teacher
  • list opportunities for providing speech-language services in the preschool classroom

Executive Function and Language Intervention
Leah L. Kapa, PhD

Many children with impaired language also have problems with executive function that may affect their language development and/or their responses to language intervention. This session will explore the effects of executive function deficits on language, specifically in the context of speech-language intervention. The speaker will share strategies for identifying executive function deficits and reducing executive function demands on children during speech-language treatment.

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • identify specific child behaviors in language intervention that may result from underlying executive function problems
  • describe potential changes to the delivery of language services and/or the intervention environment that could improve these behaviors
  • implement changes in intervention to reduce potential negative effects of executive function deficits on children's performance

The Lidcombe Program: Overview of a Direct Treatment for Preschool Children Who Stutter
Gissella Santayana, MHSc

When working with preschool children, speech-language pathologists may need to answer parents’ questions regarding treatment options for fluency disorders. One evidence-based treatment for this age group is the Lidcombe Program. This session will present an overview of the program, discuss the optimal time of treatment, as well as summarize studies that support use of this program for treating stuttering in the preschool years.

Content Disclosure: This session focuses on the Lidcombe Program only and does not include discussion of similar programs for stuttering intervention.

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • list the components of the Lidcombe Program
  • explain when it is appropriate to seek treatment for preschoolers who stutter
  • answer parents' questions regarding the objectives of the Lidcombe Program

Writing Present Level of Performance and Treatment Plans: Analyzing Speech Sound Error Patterns in Children With Speech Sound Disorders
C. Melanie Schuele, PhD, CCC-SLP

Analyzing error patterns in data obtained from production of single words and/or connected speech can be an important step in planning and implementing effective speech sound intervention. This session will review speech sound error patterns and discuss when error pattern analysis is indicated for preschool and school-age children. The speaker will discuss case examples and present procedures for analyzing speech sound data for error patterns (e.g., frequency, phoneme involved), writing IEP present level of performance based on error pattern analysis, and planning intervention using error pattern data.

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • analyze a sample of speech production for error patterns
  • write IEP present levels of performance based on error pattern analysis
  • plan intervention and progress monitoring that is informed by error pattern analysis

Early Indicators of Risk for Dyslexia and Other Reading Difficulties
Suzanne Adlof, PhD

Learning to read is one of the most important outcomes of schooling, but acquiring literacy begins in infancy. Children who exhibit speech and language delays during the preschool years have an increased risk for developing reading and writing difficulties. This session will discuss the characteristics of dyslexia and other reading disorders, how to assess preschoolers’ risk for future reading difficulties, the components of evidence-based instruction that can promote positive student outcomes, and the SLP’s role in supporting literacy development.

After completing this session, you will be able to:

  • identify risk factors and protective factors for reading disorders within preschool clinical cases
  • list the similarities and differences between dyslexia and developmental language disorder (DLD)
  • explain to parents and teachers how evidence-based reading instruction can help all children, including those with dyslexia or DLD, develop proficient reading skills

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