Jun 19

Teaching movements for communication: Accessing AAC for children who have complex communication needs

June 19 - 23, 2023

8:00 AM - 4:30 PM

For some children with complex communication needs, it is the method of accessing the Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) system that is significantly affecting their development of intelligible, autonomous communication. These children, who have significant physical and/or sensory challenges, often need to learn movements to access (electronic and non-electronic) AAC systems, produce early communication signals, gestures or signs. This intensive five-day workshop will provide participants with an in-depth opportunity to explore the movement differences associated with cerebral palsy, other significant neurological movement impairments (e.g., Rett Syndrome, Pitt Hopkins, and Cri Du Chat), and severe sensory processing challenges. There will be a focus on identifying these posture and movement challenges in relation to their impact on communication development, assessment and intelligibility. A range of strategies and a process to teach movements for communication will be demonstrated.

Attendance will be most effective for teams who are working with children who have severe physical and sensory challenges and are struggling to access augmentative communication systems (electronic and non-electronic) and gestural communication. Teams may include speech language pathologists, educators, physical therapists, occupational therapists, family members, school leadership, and support personnel. However, it will also be of significant value and give direction and knowledge to individual therapists, educators and family members. It would be helpful, but not a requirement, for one of the members of the team to have previously attended an Introductory PODD (Pragmatic Organization Dynamic Display) communication training.

Course speakers include internationally renowned speakers Claire Cotter, Gayle Porter, and Linda Burkhart. The course will be from 8:00- 4:30, Monday through Friday. Lunch and light refreshments will be provided.

See https://conta.cc/3PkEjcq for additional course information.

Funding provided in whole or in part by The Autism Program of Illinois and the IL Department of Human Services.

Sponsored by the Assistive Technology Unit and the Institute on Disability and Human Development at the University of Illinois Chicago.


Stephanie Bay