Pediatric Speech - Language Therapy Services -  Molly Thompson M.S. CCC-SLP


Is it jargon or a speech-language disorder?

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What is language? What is speech?

When a person has trouble understanding others (receptive language), or sharing thoughts, ideas, and feelings completely (expressive language), then he or she has a language disorder.

When a person is unable to produce speech sounds correctly or fluently, or has problems with his or her voice, then he or she has a speech disorder.

For more info:
American Speech-Language Hearing Association

What is Speech-Language Pathology?

Speech-Language Pathology is the practice of identifying, diagnosing and treating individuals who have communication disorders. These may include disorders of speech, articulation, fluency, voice, verbal and written language, comprehension, cognition, swallowing and alternative/augmentative communication.

What is a Speech-Language Pathologist?

A speech-language pathologist is a highly educated and skilled professional who is licensed in the state of Alaska to practice speech/language pathology and certified as clinically competent by the American Speech-Language Hearing Association (that's the CCC after the name). A Speech-Language Pathologist screens, evaluates, diagnoses, treats and consults on disorders of communication.

What is a speech-language evaluation?

A speech-language evaluation is t to gain insight into a child's developing speech language and communication skills. Molly will obtain a variety of scores from the tests utilized in the evaluation. These scores (standard scores, age equivalents and percentile ranks), as well as information from other types of tests, her determine if your child has delayed or disordered speech and/or language.

In addition to determining if a speech and/or language delay is present, Molly may give special tests, observational scales and parent report measures to gather information about social, play, communicative and behavioral patterns that are related to your concerns. A report is then generated and a plan of care (goals) if services are desired.

What tests are used in a speech-language evaluation?

Formal/standardized tests can be administered to evaluate a child's comprehension of language, expressive language, articulation and receptive and expressive vocabulary skills. Informal tests may include an oral-motor examination, language samples, some structural play interactions, caregiver questionnaires and checklists that will help provide additional information to supplement the formal tests administered.

Why is a speech-language evaluation beneficial?

The recommendation from a speech-language assessment may address:

• Underlying causes related to a learning or language difficulty
• Related causes or correlations affecting speech production
• Ideas for activities at home that will help facilitate language / communication / play / social skills
• Linguistic, oral-motor, gesture and related communication treatment goals
• Other appropriate referrals

What areas are addressed in speech-language treatment?

Therapy is fun! Kids learn best when an activity is interesting and engaging (it’s neuroscience at its best).

Speech-language treatment plans and goals are created and implemented based on the child's individual needs. Individual therapy may address:

• Opportunities to develop more appropriate play skills
• Intelligible speech
• Language processing improvement
• Language and learning skills (executive function)
• Social skills (i.e., imitation, theory of mind, joint attention) and foster more appropriate social interaction skills
• Language comprehension and expression

What can I do to improve the evaluation and treatment process?

Ask questions. They are all welcome.

Participate fully. Molly encourages parents to be present during the evaluation and treatment so one can see not only what she is doing, but what your child is doing as well.

Do your homework? Once a week is the norm for treatment as it saves you time and money. There are times that more treatment is needed, but for the most part, the family is required to do activities daily. Molly does her best to make it fit into your environment as well as being fun.

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Pediatric Speech - Language Services in Anchorage, AK - Molly Thompson M.S. CCC-SLP

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