Category archives: Blog

  • This morning I listened to an Emily Blunt interview on the Howard Stern show, and it was interesting to hear her discuss her stuttering. Emily said she started stuttering at age 7, and she couldn't get a handle on it until she began acting at age 12. Many people know that rhythm and melody improve fluency, but she talked about the psychological side in regard to becoming a character. She described acting as a "removal of self from yourself," and how that idea helped her stuttering. To me it sounded like Emily gained confidence by acting like someone else, and was thus more comfortable being someone else than being herself. Emily went on to say that people on the street have influenced how she played a role. For example, when Emily was doing 'The Devil Wears Prada', she said the following l[...]

  • I watched Daniel Levitin talk on YouTube about his book, “The Organized Mind: Thinking Straight in an Age of Information Overload.” I learned important information that anyone can use to improve their executive functioning skills for increased productivity. Now I’m reflecting and extending what I learned from Daniel’s talk, which included three topics: 1) Two modes of attention, 2) Brain extenders, and 3) Decision making. Two modes of attention The two modes of attention include the task positive network for tasks that require focused attention, and the task negative network that is utilized when you’re not doing a specified task. Creativity and problem solving are more likely to occur when your mind is wandering via the task negative network. I definitely find this to be true when I’m[...]

  • Apple held an event on September 9 to announce new products. I was unable to watch the event live because I had to work a full day in my school district; however, I watched the recorded event that night via my Apple TV. I must say I couldn’t watch the entire thing without some fast forwarding. It was approximately 2.5 hours long, which is a bit too long for my schedule as a hard-working Dad. As I viewed the Apple event, I noted announcements for Apple Watch, iPad Pro, Apple TV, and iPhone. Although I was very interested in knowing about the latest news regarding all of the products, my interest in purchasing all of them was not as high. Within the last year, I got an iPhone 6 on a two-year contract and an Apple Watch. So, I wasn’t looking to replace either device. Additionally, within t[...]

  • This school year I have speech-language students with executive functioning (EF) needs including organization, time management, metacognition, and more. In the past, I targeted these skills indirectly via strategies I thought were useful, but now I need to target them directly with evidence-based strategies and resources. So, I decided to search online and ask colleagues for recommendations. Here’s what I discovered that I think others would also appreciate for targeting EF skills: Interview with Sarah Ward that includes her top 3 EF strategies: Webinar - Executive Function Skills: Practical Treatment Ideas: Slideshow handout - Executive Function Skills in the Classroom: Slideshow handout - Executi[...]

  • Over the years of my career as an SLP, I have used several different spreadsheet templates for tracking students’ speech-language service minutes. The spreadsheets allowed me to track a general number of minutes per month; however, I wanted a more detailed form to specifically track services that are different types and frequencies. I was seeking the ability to easily verify that I am providing all speech-language services per students’ IEPs. After searching the Internet and asking colleagues, I couldn’t find anything that met my criteria. So, I decided to create my own spreadsheet that included the following 3 features: 1) Track minutes per week as well as minutes per month 2) Separately track minutes for individual, group, and consultation services 3) Embed formulas to add the minut[...]

  • After you say your hellos and talk about summer at the beginning of the school year, it’s time to work. However, it’s not feasible to start providing services or working on IEPs before organizing the students on your caseload. For me, I get organized initially by completing three templates: Caseload List, Speech Schedule, and IEP Due Dates. I created the templates for Caseload List, Schedule, and IEP Due Dates in Pages on my Mac. Then, I replaced the sample content with my students’ information. This school year, I exported the templates to Word, so my colleagues without Pages could use them. You will find the templates below to download and use. Feel free to modify the templates however you see fit for non-commercial use. If you share the templates, I just ask that you please provide c[...]

  • For the 2015 - 2016 school year, a local school district hired me via my own agency to provide SLP services at two different elementary schools. Prior to starting at the schools, I thought I should explore tools for tracking driving mileage and work hours. I have used spreadsheets and paper-based solutions in the past for these tasks, but I really wanted iOS apps I could easily implement wherever on my iPhone. After searching on the App Store, I decided to purchase MileTracker and OfficeTime. Since I started work this week, I already used the apps and have info to share about each. MileTracker is an iOS app (currently $2.99) used primarily for tracking driving mileage. It’s also possible to record expenses for tolls, parking, and fuel. When I was ready to begin using the app, I added [...]