Speech Strategies is wishing you all a fun filled weekend of physical activity with family! We all really want to get outdoors again and enjoy some family time. We have been concentrating on different ways to incorporate motor movement into our speech therapy sessions this week to help keep our clients active. We believe in taking some time to do the work that is needed to achieve our goals during our therapy sessions. However, we also believe in taking a few minutes to play to take a brain break. We work hard to make sure that we are addressing speech goals while we are "playing". Playing outside and giving your child verbal directions, such as "Race you to the slide and then the swings" or "walk backwards to the monkey bars and run to the merry-go-round" are examples of a fun way that you can address listening skills at home while using movement to maintain attention! Have fun!
TAKE SOME TIME TO BREATHE
I asked my student this week to observe my sessions to see if there were any tips that I was sharing with multiple clients throughout the day. She noted that I almost always begin sessions with breathing exercises. It has become a habit to begin this way since the skill needs to be reviewed with almost all of my clients. Better breath support helps clients to be more able to achieve adequate vocal volume for voicing. Proper breathing techniques allow patients to complete additional repetitions of other exercises, such as producing sentences with their target speech sounds. Slower pacing during breathing helps to achieve lower anxiety levels associated with difficult tasks. The hectic pace of our lives encourages us to move through tasks that we take for granted as being automatic, as quickly as possible. Taking some time to concentrate on the mechanics of breathing, helps us to slow down and get into the right frame of mind for our therapy session. I remind patients to concentrate on lengthening their exhalation time in comparison to inhalation. For example, if you count to four during inhalation, try to count to eight during exhalation. "Blow out the bad air to make room for the good air" as one of my clients says. I found this quote useful since it pairs the exercise with positive thoughts as well. Enjoy!
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