Today was our weekly speech and language therapy session. We continued doing some auditory memory exercises, e.g. Mia listens to a (short and simple!) sequence of claps and has to imitate. This is hard for her. Hannah and Julie are working together at the moment. Julie is trained in Prompt and TalkTools. The work we are doing using these techniques has shown improvement in:
- mouth shape and quality of sound for ‘p’, ‘b’ and ‘m’ sounds. They’re getting there!
- strength around Mia’s cheeks and jaw
- breath control
- memorising a sequence of claps or instructions. It’s still hard, but there has been an improvement in a week.
I need to help Mia lose the vowel she puts onto the end of ‘p’. I’ve addressed this before and it’s a tall order – she’s had it for a while. It’s been learned and unlearning such a thing is hard. When we come to blending each sound with others it’s important that they are accurate. If you say a voiced ‘pa’ (a true ‘p’ is voiceless – trust me it is just an expiration of air!) then try to combine that with an ‘ee’ to make ‘pea’ you have a ‘pah-ee’. Makes everything much harder further down the line.
Also, we will be working on lengthening breath output – longer expirations with the harmonica instead of repeated short bursts. Tried that this afternoon and got a noticeable very slightly longer sound!
The therapist spoke about having two sessions per week. It’s an intricate business trying to help Mia strengthen her speech equipment – muscles and breath – and working on accuracy of sounds etc. Plus there’s all the language targets to work on too to help her with language development. So much to do! I need you Zip It For Mia to help us here!