Today’s interview is with Lynn Carahaly, M.A., CCC-SLP, Developer of The Speech-EZ® Apraxia Program and Speech-EZ® apps. Please visit their website, Facebook and Twitter pages.
Thank you for participating our interview. Please tell us a little about yourself and Speech-EZ® apps.
I have been practicing as a Pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist for over 15 years now. I received her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from “The” Ohio State University. I am the owner/director of private practice, Foundations Developmental House, LLC, located in Gilbert, AZ, which is home of The Speech-EZ® Apraxia Program and Speech-EZ® apps. I work in the clinical setting and the school based setting and develop Speech and Educational apps. My area of specialization is with the treatment of childhood apraxia of speech, auditory processing disorders, related disorders and learning disabilities, as well as pragmatic language.
How is your Apraxia Picture Sound Cards app different from other apps for apraxia?
Our patent pending sharing technology is probably the feature that makes Apraxia Picture Sound Card superior. If communication between SLP and parent is important to you, then this is your app. I really wanted to create an innovative way to increase communication and participation between SLP and parent. Providing parents with a sound tool to work with their child is key. If the SLP has the Pro version, and the parent has the Parent version, SLP and parent can communicate between devices! The SLP has the ability to create customized stimulus homework sets and “share” directly to the parent’s app.
You can also create a team if your child is working with more than one therapist. For example, many children have a school SLP and a private SLP or home-based SLP. Progress can be viewed by the whole team so everyone is on the same page. Goals for CAS, Phonological Processes and more can be hand selected and customized from goal bank and shared with parent.
What also makes this app a stand out is the use of Evidence-Based Practice (EBP) treatment techniques using Hand Cues which are manual gestures used to mimic articulatory movements, leading to increasing procedural memory and improved motor planning. You are investing in a method and not just an app with flash cards. The full Speech-Ez Manual is now included with print functions.
Did you hire a developer or do it yourself?
I have a wonderful mobile apps development team, Codered-i.com
What are your plans for the future? Will you be developing any more apps?
I would love the opportunity to continue to develop more apps in other areas that I am passionate about, including auditory processing, Executive functioning and working memory. I also have ideas to continue to make our current apps even more amazing.
Is there any news you would like to share with The iMums?
Speech-EZ® GIVEAWAY time NOW and HUGE 48 SALE to follow August 7th! Speech-EZ® is giving away an iPad mini 2 (16GB); Apraxia Picture Sound Cards (Parent) app; and APSC (Pro) app Live NOW-Aug 5th. Enter here: If you don’t win, don’t worry: HUGE 48hr SALE Aug 7th at 12:00pm Eastern Time on all SPEECH-EZ® apps! APSC Pro from $299 to $89 APSC Parent from $179 to $79, all other Speech-EZ apps from $29.99 down to $4.99. The last Speech-EZ Sale that was this big was 18 months ago. They are far and few between, so if you are considering, NOW is the time! You can enter to win here!
Thank you so much for talking with us today Lynn and sharing a bit about your company. We really appreciated the chance to get to know you and are excited to be giving away a copy of Apraxia Picture Sound Cards to celebrate the interview and your latest update!
Here is a sneak peek at some pieces of the app! You can also watch a video demo as well. You may also wish to read these articles Lynn has written for The iMums:
When First Words Don’t Come Easily
The Connection Between Memory and Learning
The Boss is Out! The Impact Of Executive Function Deficits in Children with ADHD and Related Learning Disabilities
Parent Version iTunes Link: Apraxia Picture Sound Cards APSC – Foundations Developmental House, LLC
Requirements: Compatible with
Size: 0 MB
Pro Version iTunes Link: Apraxia Picture Sound Cards APSC Pro – Foundations Developmental House, LLC
Apraxia Picture Sound Cards (Pro version)
Requirements: Compatible with
Size: 0 MB
If you would like to win a promo code for Apraxia Picture Sound Cards APSC parent app valued at $179 USD, please enter via the widget below. You can read iMum Mary’s review of the app here.Winners will be emailed and must contact The iMums within 48 hours to claim their prize. This giveaway is open to everyone, worldwide, and an iTunes account is required to claim the prize. Please ensure you have read and understand our Terms & Conditions. Good luck!
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Today’s interview is with Sharon Gretz of CASANA – this was originally published on May 14th 2013 for the first Apraxia Awareness Day, we are republishing it today in honor of Apraxia Awareness Day – Thursday May 14th 2015
Thank you for participating our interview, Sharon thank you for joining us today.. Today is Apraxia Awareness Day so a great time to learn about CASANA and Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS or Apraxia)
What is CASANA?
CASANA is the acronym that stands for the Childhood Apraxia of Speech Association of North America. We are the only national 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated exclusively to children with apraxia of speech and their families.
What is Childhood Apraxia of Speech ?
Childhood Apraxia of Speech is a neurologically based speech disorder in which children have difficulty with planning the movements that underlie speech. We often do not think about speech as a motor action, but in fact, the act of physically producing speech is probably the most refined movements that humans create! What people most notice in children with apraxia of speech, before treatment or when severely affected, is that they have limited speech or speech that is very difficult to understand, sometimes even their own family does not understand. It is among the most severe of speech and communication disorders in children.
How and when was CASANA founded? CASANA was incorporated in 2000, but informally started several years earlier when I created an online email discussion group about apraxia. A short time later, with the help of other volunteers, we created the Apraxia-KIDS.org website too. At that time – the mid to late 1990’s, the world wide web was brand new and there was no information available to families about apraxia. My son had been diagnosed in 1994 and aside from a few obscure professional journal articles in a university library, I had no information to go on. That seems almost hard to believe now given the internet and how much information is available now! And so around the time CASANA incorporated, the whole thing was just getting way to big to operate alone or solely in my living room on my home computer. Clearly, a bigger response was needed because the problem of speech apraxia is one with enormous impact on these children and the families too. So, I gathered some dedicated other parents and family members of those with CAS and together we have made this thing not only survive, but grow strong and be a world wide source of information for all those who are impacted. We also believed that in order for the children to thrive, we needed 3 legs to our stool. Families represent one leg. Speech – language pathologists and other professionals, the 2nd leg, and researchers the 3rd leg. Together – we could all make a difference for the children and their futures.
Tell us about your personal experience with Apraxia ? My youngest son was diagnosed with severe apraxia at a little over 3 years old. He had been in speech therapy through early intervention birth to three program for an entire year, first at 1x a week then at 2x a week. But yet, he did not really say anymore at the end of that year than he had at the beginning. I was very concerned and through a physician friend had him evaluated by the head of Audiology and Communication Disorders at our Children’s Hospital and one of the other SLPs there. After the evaluation, they met with me and delivered the news that my son had something called apraxia of speech and that it was severe. I remember feeling relieved because I knew something more was wrong than just a speech delay and hoped that finding out the “what” would lead to help that truly helped. But I was also like a deer in headlights. I had no idea what it would mean. What was said to me did not totally absorb that day.
But the blessing that came from that fateful day was being connected to an SLP who had great success with kids who had apraxia and having a new team who understood how to help my son learn to speak. I distinctly remember sitting in the observation room, behind a one way mirror/window and watching speech therapy – day after day, week after week, year after year. It was as if I was watching the unfolding of human potential right before my eyes. My son’s SLP was/is marvelous, extraordinary really – as both a clinician and a human being (my son was lucky enough to receive intensive speech therapy from none other than apraxia expert David Hammer). Watching the two of them together was truly an awe inspiring experience. They had a special bond; still do for that matter. My son was so motivated. He wanted to speak. He wanted it so bad. And David Hammer, he was magical with my son. He knew just what to do to elicit speech attempts, how to shape those speech attempts into understandable words, and how to make my son delight in repeated practice of the very thing that was the most difficult thing in his life. It was beautiful. In my mind, CASANA and our work are a tribute to them both and to who they were to each other and for the miracle of my son’s voice. Luke is now a young adult in college and apraxia is not something on his mind much. His speech is terrific, thanks to his hard work and Dave’s talent as a clinician.
The bottom line is that I know the struggle. I’ve walked in those shoes and there is nothing that gives me more satisfaction than to reach out and help another parent who is like that deer in the head-lights and to see them and their child unfold, grow and develop into everything they were meant to be.
What services does CASANA offer?
CASANA has three main areas of focus: information, awareness and support; education; and research. So we do many things!! I am so proud of what we do and the difference we have made. Our website and online resources are a wealth and treasure-trove of amazing information for parents and professionals on all aspects of CAS. We have “grown up” as an online support network and this includes our email discussion listserv and our many facebook groups. We raise awareness with the help of wonderful volunteers in the Walk for Children with Apraxia®. This effort has grown from humble beginnings started by a 7 year old boy, Sean Freiburger, and his mom, Sue, here in Pittsburgh and has grown to this year include about 70 walks in communities across North America and probably, before this year is done, over 15,000 walkers. It is so exciting to watch this Apraxia community grow and blossom as a result of the Walk for Children with Apraxia®! The first Apraxia Awareness Day, Tuesday May 14, 2013 is proving to be another amazing effort fueled by thousands of families and supporters. Through our support efforts, CASANA along with wonderful partners such as the Silent Star Foundation, have provided 150 ipads and cases to children with apraxia. This year we hope to provide another 150 ipads and cases. Just a few weeks ago, we announced a new partnership with the Small Steps in Speech organization in which CASANA funds will be distributed in small grants to needy children with apraxia in order to supplement their speech therapy costs.
In our educational efforts, each year CASANA offers 6 – 8 apraxia workshops, monthly webinars, basic short 2 – 3 hour seminars, and a fantastic annual three day conference. We have also for several years run our CASANA Apraxia Intensive Training Institute in which we select a small class of speech-language professionals who have demonstrated some good experience with CAS and we take them to “boot camp” with expert faculty in order to further hone their expertise and specialty in apraxia. So far we have had forty graduates of our Intensive Training program. Each year CASANA provides direct education to over 2,000 people.
Finally, there are CASANA’s research efforts. We work with apraxia researchers in order to help connect appropriate families to research projects they may be interested in or their children qualified for. CASANA also funds research and in fact, we are the only dedicated funding body for CAS research. In recent years, our ability to fund research has been increased due to funds raised in the Walk for Children with Apraxia®. Our Apraxia Research Registry is another aspect. This one is unique in that it is a “bottom’s up” approach in which parents are entering extensive data on matters like prenatal birth history, birth history, post-natal period, early development, speech development, medical, educational, etc. The idea is to collect enough information in which we can begin to examine aggregate data and get a better idea of trends in some of these areas. Additionally, we hope to use the registry to further connect families and the research community on specific projects. Just recently, we hosted the 2013 Childhood Apraxia of Speech Research Symposium and heard from dozens of apraxia researchers from all over the world on current thinking and the state of the art in CAS research. We are currently prepping video of that event for public viewing in an online streaming.
Are your continuing education courses and conference only for SLPs ? Almost everything we do involves families and professionals, and educational courses are no exception! Many parents attend our webinars, workshops and of course the national conference!
Anything else you would like to share
Just that we are very grateful to our supporters and the apraxia community for its faith, trust, and tangible support. CASANA has grown rapidly in the last several years and we are still trying to absorb it all while we keep adding much needed programs. And, I also want to acknowledge and thank our wonderful staff, Board of Directors and Professional Board of Advisors. Our work, and the progress being made, is really a labor of love, a group effort, with everyone making their own very unique contributions.
Thank you so much for talking with us today and sharing a bit about CASANA. We really appreciated the chance to get to know you!
Today’s interview is with Lori Riggs, SLP of NACD. Please visit their website to learn more.
Thank you for participating our interview. Please tell us a little about yourself.
Hi! Thank you for including me. I am a mom of two boys and have been practicing speech therapy for more years than I should admit to. I currently work with the National Association for Child Development (NACD) out of Ogden, Utah, where I assess children and write home programs for parents to implement, addressing issues with speech, language, and feeding, as well as supervising auditory therapies, such as our Targeted Sound Intervention and The Listening Program. Because all of our work is home-based, our model is a little bit different from typical therapy models. I’m a native Texan, residing in the mountains of Utah with two kids and one Labradoodle.
May 14th is the 3rd Annual Apraxia Awareness Day so I’d like to take this opportunity to ask some questions about Childhood Apraxia of Speech (Apraxia).
What is Childhood Apraxia of Speech?
Since anyone can Google it and find the official definition, I’ll give my take on CAS. It’s a motor planning problem. In short, this means that it’s a difficulty making the mouth move and sequence movements the way the brain wants it to for the purpose of producing speech. Apraxia is NOT a disease. I see it more as a description.
What are the signs of Apraxia? What should a parent do if they are concerned about their child’s speech?
Obviously what CAS looks like varies widely with developmental level, age, etc. For a young child just developing speech, or a non-verbal older child, a hallmark of CAS is groping-type behaviors, such as a child watching you say “mama” and moving their mouth, but looking like they can’t figure out how to put their lips together to do what you’re doing. Intentional productions tend to be more difficult. For this reason, “pop-out” words tend to be common in this group, where you may hear a unique, clear word produced out of the blue, and then never hear it again. Or just after the child said that pop-out word, you try to get them to repeat it, and they can’t. In verbal children, CAS may manifest as: inconsistent articulation errors, voicing errors, and prosody problems (such as poor inflection or incorrect syllable/word stress). It is not uncommon to see language delays and/or dysarthria (actual muscle weakness) in conjunction with CAS. But these are not actually part of the diagnosis. If a parent is concerned about their child’s speech for any reason, they should visit their local speech pathologist.
When can Apraxia be diagnosed and who can diagnose it?
This is where my response will vary a bit from others. I will talk around the question a little because I prefer to address in a child all of the pieces that need to be addressed, not just one thing dictated by a diagnosis. At NACD we don’t “put kids in a box” because of a diagnosis. We look at all aspects of development and address therapeutically each piece that needs to be addressed. Because any given diagnosis can manifest in so many varied ways, we look at the child as an individual, rather than seeing them as characterized by a label. I may be working on motor planning for speech in a child who would not technically qualify for a CAS diagnosis but who needs some help on articulation from a motor planning perspective. (And we’re also working on oral motor skills and language and sequential processing and anything else that needs help.) See what I mean? Or a child with CAS may also need to be working on auditory sequential processing and receptive language, in addition to the motor planning activities. Therapy is about what any given child needs to work on. Because this is our paradigm at NACD, we don’t need to label and diagnose children. But I do understand that NACD is a unique organization. For those who need to obtain an official diagnosis—and certainly there are valid reasons when this is necessary—a speech/language pathologist is typically the person to provide this diagnosis.
How is the treatment for Apraxia different from that for a speech delay?
Whether a child has delayed language development, articulation impairment, CAS, or something else, we always want to be sure we are covering all aspects of the child that need help. So my answer is that it depends on the child. But in general, there will be much more emphasis on exercises that address motor planning for speech in the case of CAS, compared to language or articulation therapy. But as I mentioned before, it’s not uncommon to have delayed language in conjunction with CAS, so in some ways these treatments may overlap for some children.
What is the prognosis for a child with Apraxia?
The prognosis for developing intelligible, functional verbal communication in a child with CAS is great with lots of hard work!
Obviously Speech Therapy is very important part of treatment, but what can parents do at home to help?
Don’t look at the formal speech therapy session as the primary solution. The time spent at home is much greater than the time spent in therapy. So use therapy as a guide and carry through with those activities at home every day. If they aren’t provided, ask your therapist for daily home activities.
What apps can be useful with Apraxia?
First, as I have mentioned numerous times in things I have written, apps are only tools. They are resource materials. They don’t take the place of a therapist or parent working with the child; but they are easy tools to use when working with your child. (In other words, a child shouldn’t be handed the iPad to work on speech independently!) The NACD Home Speech Therapist apps (Speech Therapy for Apraxia; Speech Therapy for Apraxia-Words; Speech Therapy for Apraxia—2-Syllable Words; and Speech Therapy for Apraxia-Ending Sounds) are great for working on motor planning for speech, whether with a child with apraxia or speech delays or even straight articulation errors and phonological processes.
Any other resources you would like to share?
There are many materials out there now labeled for use with apraxia. And I think they all have their benefits. As with apps, though, they are merely tools. The benefit comes with the quality of their application and implementation. So I suggest observing therapy and keeping your home practice and materials consistent with what is being taught and practiced in therapy. Lots of consistent practice and lots of repetition is needed!
Thank you so much for talking with us today and helping us learn more about Apraxia. We really appreciated the chance to get to know you!
Thank you, Mary! My pleasure.
You can check out the NACD Apraxia Apps by following this link:
Appstore link :Speech Therapy For Apraxia Bundle
And you can enter to win them here:
Thanks to iTherapy we have 3 promo codes to give away for Inner Voice AAC app
You can read all about Inner Voice in this Developer Interview with Lois Jean Brady, SLP – one of the app’s developers:
Thank you for participating our interview. Please tell us a little about yourself.
I am a speech pathologist, assistive technology specialist, certified autism specialist, author (Apps for Autism) and producer of Autism TodayTV. I work with students of every age and ability. I am also a registered Pet Partner Team and have a potbelly pig named Buttercup that provides “low tech” motivation for all; students, parents and staff.
Matthew Guggemos (co-developer) is also a speech pathologist who specializes in autism and assistive technology. He received the Mensa Education & Research Foundation Intellectual Benefit to Society Award for his patent of InnerVoice.
How did the idea for your app come about?
My co-creator, Matthew Guggemos and I work with students and attend parent meetings/IEPs on a daily basis. We noted two areas fundamental areas of need in communication apps. 1. Engagement – Parents and educators report that they cannot seem to get their child/student interested in their AAC app. 2. Cost – Many parents and school districts simply cannot afford the high price tag of AAC apps.
To solve the problem of engagement we partnered with MotionPortrait who creates 3D animated avatars from photos. Their motto is to “Surprise and Amaze!” We call this approach Edutainment.
Edutainment — teaching through a medium that both educates and entertains, iTherapy and MotionPortrait’s system emphasizes engagement and joint attention. At the same time, InnerVoice incorporates speech-pathologist-designed, evidence-based practices that improve speech, language, communication, and social skills. Recent research articles have postulated that education, entertainment, and video self-modeling can provide tremendous benefits for individuals with autism.
And how long was the process from the original idea to the release of the app?
The idea has been “stewing” in my mind for a while, however the entire process took approximately 9 months.
Matthew and I have been doing clinical trials to ensure the most effective, easy to use AAC app on the market.
Did you hire a developer or do it yourself?
InnerVoice is the product of a partnership between iTherapy and MotionPortrain. iTherapy provided the clinical trials and ensured that evidence based, best practices were adhered to in developing InnerVoice. MotionPortrait brought provided the best photo-based 3D avatars and synchronized mouth movements on the market today.
What has been the hardest obstacle you have had to overcome in the development process?
Keeping track of details. Every detail is important and makes the end product effective and user friendly. Writing the User Manual was also quite a challenge.
Have you had much support during the development process (from family, peers, Apple Inc.)?
We have been blessed with incredible family support! On those long nights when we find ourselves tapping at the keyboard, mumbling to the ceiling our families have jumped-in to help out in any way possible.
What are your plans for the future? Will you be developing any more apps?
Initially I told myself, “Never Again!” Now, I can’t wait to make more. The whole process is exciting and overwhelming and somehow addicting.
What sort of feedback has your app been receiving so far?
We spent many, many clinical hours with students from every age and ability and knew InnerVoice would engage and motivate students to communicate as-well-as teach language skills. We were relieved to hear others with the same outcomes.
And finally, what advice would you give to anyone considering creating their own app?
Do it!! Be prepared for a roller coaster. Also, know that the real work begins after the app is developed. Developing is only 1/2 the job, marketing is equally important.
Thank you so much for talking with us today and sharing a bit about your company. We really appreciated the chance to get to know you!
This app is normally $19.99 but is 50% off for May for our event.
InnerVoice: augmentative alternative communication – MotionPortrait, Inc.
Category: Education, Entertainment
Requirements: Compatible with iPhone5s-iPhone5s, iPadAir-iPadAir, iPadAirCellular-iPadAirCellular, iPadMiniRetina-iPadMiniRetina, iPadMiniRetinaCellular-iPadMiniRetinaCellular, iPhone6-iPhone6, iPhone6Plus-iPhone6Plus, iPadAir2-iPadAir2, iPadAir2Cellular-iPadAir2Cellular, iPadMini3-iPadMini3, iPadMini3Cellular-iPadMini3Cellular, iPodTouchSixthGen-iPodTouchSixthGen, iPhone6s-iPhone6s, iPhone6sPlus-iPhone6sPlus, iPadMini4-iPadMini4, iPadMini4Cellular-iPadMini4Cellular, iPadPro-iPadPro, iPadProCellular-iPadProCellular, iPadPro97-iPadPro97, iPadPro97Cellular-iPadPro97Cellular, iPhoneSE-iPhoneSE, iPhone7-iPhone7, iPhone7Plus-iPhone7Plus, iPad611-iPad611, iPad612-iPad612, iPad71-iPad71, iPad72-iPad72, iPad73-iPad73, iPad74-iPad74, iPhone8-iPhone8, iPhone8Plus-iPhone8Plus, iPhoneX-iPhoneX, iPad75-iPad75, iPad76-iPad76, iPhoneXS-iPhoneXS, iPhoneXSMax-iPhoneXSMax, iPhoneXR-iPhoneXR, iPad812-iPad812, iPad834-iPad834, iPad856-iPad856, iPad878-iPad878
Size: 375.11 MB
If you would like to win a promo code for this app, please enter via the widget below. Winners will be emailed and must contact The iMums within 48 hours to claim their prize. This giveaway is open to everyone, worldwide, and an iTunes account is required to claim the prize. Please ensure you have read and understand our Terms & Conditions. Good luck!
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