AAC to the Core
Communication is Connection
In the schools, and especially in preschool, we have so many different ways that we “practice” language and “practice” communicating. We practice making requests, asking for turns, saying hi and bye, talking about colors and shapes, and many other things. During speech/language therapy there are certain activities that you use to “practice” communication. While we often have to teach our little guys the words to make the communication meaningful, communication itself is more than just the words that we “practice.”
Communication is about people.
It’s about sharing.
It’s about connecting.
People have a lot of different ways of communicating. Many of us communicate verbally. Some use sign language. Some use pictures. Some use buttons and switches. Some use devices that are activated through eye gaze. Everyone uses some degree of gestures and body language.
Everyone communicates in a different way.
For those who struggle with communicating verbally, we have technology. Technology makes so many things possible, including communication.
To access that technology is not always easy. Sometimes its months of waiting for referrals, and evaluations, and approval from insurance companies.
Communication shouldn’t have to wait.
We are social beings. We crave interaction. That social interaction should not have to wait.
Communication happens all the time. Communication is everywhere.
What if you could only communicate for 3-7 hours a day? What if your means of communication was dependent upon the environment you were in? How successful would you be? How social could you be?
A lack of resources should not be a reason why a child cannot communicate.
I am privileged enough to be a part of a community that recognizes that there should not be a limitation to communication. The mission of Sophie’s Run is to assist families in their pursuit of effective communication technologies and supports. I am eternally grateful for the generosity of such a wonderful foundation that has made it possible for over 50 students to be able to communicate everywhere, all the time.
Over the past five years, I have had the privilege of witnessing 15 of my students receive personal communication devices through Sophie’s Run.
I have witnessed these students grow not only in their expressive language skills but in their communication skills. In their ability to interact with each other and to relate to each other. I have watched them grow from timid communicators to becoming confident in themselves and the gifts that they have to offer.
Sophie’s Run has changed the lives of so many of our youngest learners and their families.