At Jennifer Katz Inc’s last summit, JKI team member Claire Dolan M.S., CCC-SLP, presented on the benefits of including parent coaching into early intervention sessions and how fellow therapists could incorporate these tips into their sessions.
BENEFITS OF COACHING*
As a result of participating in parent-implemented training programs, parents successfully learned the strategies and used them when interacting with their child.
Parents had a positive effect on their child’s communication development. Parents’ use of strategies led to improvements in their child’s expressive skills (nonverbal communication as well as speech), understanding, vocabulary, grammar, and the frequency with which their child communicated.
Parents were just as effective at helping their child as speech-language pathologists were. In fact, parents were actually more effective than speech-language pathologists when working on improving the child’s understanding of language and grammar.
Children with a variety of language difficulties made good progress when their parents were trained to help them. This includes children with Language Impairment, Autism Spectrum Disorder, and Developmental Delay.
*Roberts, M., &Kaiser, A. (2011). The Effectiveness of Parent-Implemented Language Intervention: A Meta-Analysis. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 20, 180-199.
HOW THERAPISTS CAN STRUCTURE A PARENT COACHING SESSION: INTRODUCE, DO, REVIEW
Explain to parents how to implement the strategy
Explain the purpose of the strategy (i.e., how it benefits their child’s speech and language development)
Provide handout/resource for parents to refer to and/or share with other caretakers
Model the strategy – show parents how the strategy is done
Provide parents with an opportunity to practice the strategy
Provide feedback via:
Real time coaching – as the parent is attempting the strategy provide praise and constructive feedback
Video Feedback – video the parents attempting the strategy without interruption. Once the interaction is complete, review the video together and discuss how implementation of the strategy went and how provide feedback.
Discuss how implementation of the strategy went
Encourage parents to summarize the strategy to ensure a full understanding of the strategy
Map out plan for carry-over
What will their focus be this week at home?
Where/when will they practice the strategy?
How will they remember to implement the strategy?
WHEN SHOULD PARENTS IMPLEMENT THE STRATEGIES?
“Scientists have recently determined that it takes approximately 400 repetitions to create a new synapse in the brain of children – unless it is done through play, in which case, it takes between 10 and 20 repetitions.” ~Dr. Karyn Purvis
EXAMPLES OF LANGUAGE FACILITATION STRATEGIES FOR PARENT COACHING
Observe, Wait, Listen (OWL)
PURPOSE: Increase child’s responsivity/initiation + help promote better interactions
HOW TO IMPLEMENT:
Get face to face and observe what your child is interested in
Provide enough time for your child to:
initiate an interaction
process information you provided
formulate a response
Determine what message your child is sending you (verbally and non-verbally)
Your response should directly correlate to that message
Balancing Comments with Questions
PURPOSE: provide language rich interactions, where a child can learn the language parents want them to use
HOW TO IMPLEMENT:
For every one question they ask, try to make three comments
After each comment made, wait to see what you child says/does
Try to make next comment directly relevant to what they did/said
PURPOSE: to teach meaning and encourage use of target words + gestures. Verbal routines are words that become predictable because you say them the same way, in the same activity, repeatedly.
HOW TO IMPLEMENT:
Example in a daily routines: “knock-knock, open” (while making the gesture for knock knock).
In play: when stacking blocks “on, on, on”; then wait/build anticipation and yell “boom!”, while knocking over the tower.
In books: We all Go Traveling By, by Sheena Roberts – a book full of repetitive phrases and fun sounds, that can be paired with gestures
In songs: Wheels on the Bus – pairing repetitive phrases with gestures
Hanen.org – for further information on parent strategies + parent trainings
Laura Mize – for further information on parent strategies, access to podcasts that further explain strategies and parent training manuals
https://ei.northwestern.edu/for-parents/toy-recommendations – for toy recommendations and ideas of goals to target during play