Monday, December 31, 2012

Listening and Language: January 2013 Calendar


Ring In The New Year!

Ring in 2013 with a resolution you can keep.

"I will plan ahead, be creative, spend time talking with my child,
 following his interests,  while expanding his listening abilities,
 learning, vocabulary, spoken language and conversational skills."

Here is some motivation and a fun game to get you started!

Did you know?
For further information contact Dave Sindrey LSLS CertAVT 

Children with normal hearing passively absorb information or "overhear" from the environment and constantly pick up details of information. This is referred to as incidental learning. As much as 90% percent of what a child with typical hearing learns is from overhearing conversations. 

Your child with a hearing loss does not as easily "eavesdrop" and may miss significant information that is not directed at him. As you know, even hearing aids and/or cochlear implants do not restore normal hearing. Children who have a hearing loss need to be taught directly many of the skills, concepts and vocabulary that other children learn incidentally. 

The topic and vocabulary associated with the New Year is a prime example as we usually talk about the New Year once a year which does not result in much repetition for listening, auditory comprehension and processing. In addition, the vocabulary is very specific to the celebration.

Ring in the New Year 

Play this FREE NEW YEARS GAME which will provide fun way to expand new listening and spoken language skills while spending time together as a family. The game creator also included a recipe to make with your child for your New Year celebration. Check out all her ideas at

Players start at “Baby New Year” and end at “Father Time.” 

 The first set of game cards address New Year vocabulary
and can be used to put words in sentences, give the definition or provide a synonym.
 Talk about how your family celebrates, last years memories and
 throw confetti and stay up until midnight.

These cards contain WH questions and fill-in- the-blanks related to New Year Resolutions. 

Friday, December 28, 2012

Tick, Tock - It's the time you spend with your kids!

Parents - You have one of the most important tools in your hands to ensure that your child 
learns to to listen, becomes a competent spoken language communicator and has access 
to a full range of academic, social and occupational choices.

Tick, Tock - check this out.

This is one of the principles of Auditory-Verbal therapy:

Auditory Verbal Therapists,

 "Guide and coach parents to become the primary facilitators of their child’s 
listening and spoken language development through active consistent
participation in individualized Auditory-Verbal Therapy

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Auditory Verbal Therapy: One of Most Popular 2012 ASHAsphere Posts

Here is an article written by my colleague, Todd Houston who is a professor at my alma mater, The University of Akron that you won't want to just skim over. Todd's writing was voted one of the Most Popular 2012 ASHAsphere Posts published by the American Speech, Language and Hearing Association. 

Dr. K. Todd Houston, Ph.D., CCC-SLP Cert AVT, wrote about the trend of parents choosing spoken language options, such as Auditory-Verbal Therapy, for their children with hearing loss“.

HERE is a link to view all the most popular posts from ASHAsphere for 2012.

HERE is the link for Todd Houston's article that I have reposted below.

Auditory-Verbal Therapy: Supporting Listening and Spoken Language in Young Children with Hearing Loss & Their Families

Deep conversation
Approximately 95% of parents of children with hearing loss are hearing themselves (Mitchell & Karchmer, 2004), and trends indicate that many parents are choosing spoken language as the primary mode of communication for their children with hearing loss. In fact, some states such as North Carolina, are reporting that parents are choosing spoken language options for their children with hearing loss more than 85% of the time (Alberg, Wilson & Roush, 2006), especially when they know spoken language is a viable outcome for their child. And, these parents are typically selecting approaches that support listening and spoken language, such as Auditory-Verbal Therapy, without initiating visual communication systems.
With early identification and the use of advanced hearing technology, children with even the most severe or profound hearing losses can access audition and follow an intervention approach focused on achieving typical developmental milestones in listening, speech, language, cognition, and conversational competence. Parents’ communication choices are based on their long-term desired outcomes for their child. Once those decisions are made, professionals providing early intervention and habilitative services should support the parents’ choices and provide the necessary support and intervention to ensure, to the greatest extent possible, that the child achieves those outcomes.
 Definition of Auditory-Verbal Therapy
The Alexander Graham Bell (AG Bell) Academy for Listening and Spoken Language, which is based in Washington, DC, governs the certification of Listening and Spoken Language Specialists (LSLS), the practitioners qualified to provide Auditory-Verbal Therapy. The Academy defines the practice of Auditory-Verbal Therapy as:
“Auditory-Verbal Therapy facilitates optimal acquisition of spoken language through listening by newborns, infants, toddlers, and young children who are deaf or hard of hearing. Auditory-Verbal Therapy promotes early diagnosis, one-on-one therapy, and state-of-the-art audiologic management and technology. Parents and caregivers actively participate in therapy. Through guidance, coaching, and demonstration, parents become the primary facilitators of their child’s spoken language development. Ultimately, parents and caregivers gain confidence that their child can have access to a full range of academic, social, and occupational choices. Auditory-Verbal Therapy must be conducted in adherence to the Principles LSLS of Auditory-Verbal Therapy” (AG Bell Academy, 2012).
The Principles of Auditory-Verbal Therapy: Defining Practice
The Academy has endorsed a set of principles that delineate the practice of Auditory-Verbal Therapy:
  1. Promote early diagnosis of hearing loss in newborns, infants, toddlers, and young children, followed by immediate audiologic management and Auditory-Verbal Therapy;
  2. Recommend immediate assessment and use of appropriate, state-of-the-art hearing technology to obtain maximum benefits of auditory stimulation;
  3. Guide and coach parents to help their child use hearing as the primary sensory modality in developing spoken language;
  4. Guide and coach parents to become the primary facilitators of their child’s listening and spoken language development through active consistent participation in individualized Auditory-Verbal Therapy;
  5. Guide and coach parents to create environments that support listening for the acquisition of spoken language throughout the child’s daily activities;
  6. Guide and coach parents to help their child integrate listening and spoken language into all aspects of the child’s life;
  7. Guide and coach parents to use natural developmental patterns of audition, speech, language, cognition, and communication;
  8. Guide and coach parents to help their child self-monitor spoken language through listening;
  9. Administer ongoing formal and informal diagnostic assessments to develop individualized Auditory-Verbal treatment plans, to monitor progress, and to evaluate the effectiveness of the plans for the child and family; and
  10. Promote education in regular school with peers who have typical hearing and with appropriate services from early childhood onwards.
  11. The Listening and Spoken Language Specialist (LSLS):
    Two Paths to Certification
    The AG Bell Academy has designated two paths to certification for Auditory-Verbal practitioners: LSLS Certified Auditory-Verbal Therapist (LSLS Cert. AVT) and the LSLS Certified Auditory-Verbal Educator (LSLS Cert. AVEd). The LSLS certification is awarded to qualified professionals who have met rigorous academic, professional, post-graduate education and mentoring requirements, and have passed a certification exam. Typically, LSLS certified practitioners are licensed audiologists, speech-language pathologists, or educators of the deaf who have the required background, training and experience in listening and spoken language theory and practice with children with hearing loss and their families. For additional information about certification as a Listening and Spoken Language Specialist (LSLS), speech-language pathologists and audiologists should contact the AG Bell Academy at, visit the website ate, or call (202) 204-4700.
    Alberg, J., Wilson, K., & Roush, J. (2006). Statewide collaboration in the delivery of EHDI services. The Volta Review, 106, 3, 259-274.
    AG Bell Academy for Listening and Spoken Language (2012). 2012 certification handbook. Available at
    Mitchell, R.E. & Karchmer, M.A. (2004). Chasing the mythical ten percent: Parental hearing status of deaf and hard of hearing students in the United States. Sign Language Studies, 4, 2, 138-163.
    Dr. K. Todd Houston, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, LSLS Cert. AVT, is an Associate Professor in the School of Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology at The University of Akron. His primary areas of research include spoken language acquisition in children with hearing loss, strategies for enhancing parent engagement in the intervention process, Auditory-Verbal Therapy, and telepractice. He directs the Telepractice and eLearning Laboratory (TeLL), an initiative to evaluate clinical practices in the area of distance service delivery in Speech-Language Pathology.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Listen and Learn with Rudolph's Crazy Cookie Exchange Game

 Click here for: 

Rudolph's Crazy Cookie Exchange Game

Pam from Chitchat and Smalltalk
designed this game and is perfect for listening and spoken language, auditory processing, listening for directions as well as targeting descriptive language.

The object of the game is to be the first player to share all of your cookies by listening and following the directions on the game cards. 
Remember to present the cards through hearing alone.  Read the cards without letting them your child see the pictures. Kids love the snack attack, the cookie stash and swapping cookies while learning new vocabulary.

Pam from shared this pictures below.

Players start with 5 cookies in their own Cookie Stash.  They choose them from the center pile before the game begins.  Players take turns drawing a card. listening and then following the direction that is read to them on the card.

In the example above, the player drew a card that stated that Granny wants a red cookie.  The player chooses a cookie from his Cookie Stash that matches the description and places it on Granny's plate.  If he does not have one that matches, he finds one from the center pile to give to her instead.

Sometimes the card will tell you that the character DOESN'T want specific colors or shapes of cookies.  The player listen carefully and remove the cookie or cookies from the character's plate that match the description and place them back in his Cookie Stash.Sometimes a player will draw a card that gives them special listening instructions.  Some of the cards direct players to put cookies back in the pile or to trade cookies between the characters.  And some tell you to give two of your cookies away.  The SWAP! cards mean that the player must move all of one character's cookies to the other character's plate, and vise versa.

Play continues until a player shares all of his or her cookies.  It's fun, and not as easy to get rid of your cookies as you'd think!

Let me know if you played this game and if you had as much fun as the kids!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Listen to Every Word - Understanding Negation

Have you ever considered the power of the single word "NOT" or how a "contraction" changes the meaning of a statement or conversation?

True Story: Years ago, I saw a boy for auditory rehab who was late implanted. He was eager for his first sleepover and had invited two brothers as I recall from his public school. We discussed his upcoming slumber party in great detail during our session. He had the evening planned from the games they would play, their snacks and he picked out his favorite movie. 

The next week, I began eagerly asking about the party and his Mom gave me "The Look". 
I could tell the party must not had gone as planned. Worse than I imagined, the best his parents could piece together was when he has invited the brothers to the sleepover, they had responded by saying, "We can't come."  Being a new listener, he missed the negation and interpreted their reply as "We can come." and the party was on!

After that sad situation, I  target "listening for contractions" and include the word "not" in connected speech activities or auditory directions. Most children catch on quickly but I learned my lesson!

Contractions and negatives modify the meaning of spoken language, tend to be unstressed, are embedded in connected language and difficult to hear for our children who are hard of hearing. The next listening level after focusing on "not" is having your child follow the directions by listening to the contractions such as "Where is the nutcracker that isn't skinny."  or "Which reindeer doesn't have a red nose?". I'm sure you can think of examples at home. "Give Grandpa a gingerbread cookie that isn't broken." 

Click here HERE for a free Christmas Themed printable: Understanding Negatives.

By the way, this is a great target for children with auditory processing needs as well.

Many thanks for this printable to Whitney at

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Establishing A Sound Foundation for Children

Establishing A Sound Foundation for Children
 Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing 

Take a few minutes and view this IMPORTANT video!

Over the past decade, tremendous progress has been made in ensuring that families have  access to hearing screening when a baby is born. Approximately 95% of babies now receive a hearing screen shortly after birth. Now, greater emphasis must be placed on training early childhood education and health care providers.

Dr. Karl R. White is recognized as one of the world's leading authorities on early identification and treatment of hearing loss in infants and young children. Please read his impressive biography on the video link.

Pass this on to other parents and professionals!