Virtually Speaking: A Teletherapy Blog for Clinicians, by Clinicians – PresenceLearning

Starting this month, we will list a selection of some of the most widely read and topical articles and resources that have come across our clinical radar. What was on your reading list this month? Please share your best below in the Comments. Intervention strategies evolve in K12: New approaches address social-emotional learning and anxiety as well as academic instruction – School districts have implemented RTI and PBIS for over a decade. Learnings over this period, combined with a better understanding of the neuroscience behind learning and new technology have led educators to further refine intervention strategies. This article outlines four new approaches to intervention. (From District Administration) Education Department Launches New IDEA Website – Based on feedback from educators, administrators, parents, service providers, and advocates, the US Department…

According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), suicide is now the second leading cause of death among teenagers. A new report also shows that the suicide rate among girls is at its highest in 40 years. Many young people themselves feel they do not have access to the resources that can increase their ability to deal with stress, anxiety, and other mental health issues. Regardless of our role in a young person’s life – friend, parent, caregiver, sister, brother, relative, teacher, therapist – we need to be aware of the signs and risk factors for suicide, and be prepared to help. The National Institute of Mental Health and the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention both provide resources for learning more. Familiarize yourself with the…

By Dara Rogoff, MS, CCC-SLP, BCS-CL PresenceLearning provides speech and language services via an onsite/online service service delivery model. Together, as a team, onsite speech-language pathologists (SLPs) work with selected students while online SLPs work with others. Determining how to split the workload depends on a number of factors that may include caseloads, existing resources, travel time, and the need for specialists. Some districts prefer to move their older students to online services to free up time for onsite SLPs to work with early childhood students, whereas others may tap online clinicians for their elementary students. In some districts, we work with charter school students and homebound students. Other districts may need online help for bilingual students or edge cases. In all of these scenarios,…

By Elizabeth Haas This is the third and final post in a three-part series on school-based occupational therapy for sensory integration issues. You can read part one here, where I provide an overview of sensory integration issues, and part two here, in which I describe working with a little girl and her mother. Working with a child who has sensory integration needs is not so very different online as it is onsite. As occupational therapists, we need to listen to school teams and parents to learn the types of inappropriate behaviors that are preventing a child from performing to their fullest ability in school. With this information in hand, we can then educate school staff and families on sensory integration and make suggestions on what…

By Elizabeth Haas This is the second post in a three-part series on school-based occupational therapy for sensory integration issues. You can read the first post here, where I provide an overview of sensory integration issues.  L. is a student who not only inspired me, but taught me that working online with children who have sensory integration needs is possible. When I met L., she was eight years old and in the third grade. When she started school in kindergarten, she attended a brick and mortar school, but she suffered so many traumatic experiences there that her parents switched her to a virtual school. L.’s needs were so severe and led to so many scary experiences for her and her family that she actually stopped…

By Elizabeth Haas This is the first post in a three-part series on school-based occupational therapy for sensory integration issues. When I first started providing online occupational therapy (OT) services to students online several years ago, I thought it might be difficult to work on certain types of goals in an online environment, particularly those related to a student’s sensory integration needs. In the second and third posts in this series, I will share a case study about a student who opened my eyes in many regards, as well some specific ways occupational therapists work with students, families, and support teams on sensory integration. To kick off the series, however, let’s discuss what is meant by the term sensory integration. Simply put, sensory integration refers…

Every May, ASHA‘s Better Hearing & Speech Month raises awareness about communication disorders and the role of ASHA members in providing intervention. The 2017 theme is “Communication: The Key to Connection.” We couldn’t agree more – proper communication is the key to connection! It’s the foundational skill supporting children’s relationships with families, friends and educators; their learning in the classroom; and their ongoing success. Because of this, speech-language pathologists and audiologists play a CRUCIAL role in students’ lives. Their diligent evaluations and thoughtful intervention strategies can most certainly change a student’s life for the better. Our online clinicians work hard year-round, but we most certainly will share our thanks for them this month! How do you plan on showing your gratitude and spreading awareness? ASHA…

SeekFreaks is a new online resource for clinicians covering topics related to school-based practice, and was started by Carlo Vialu, who formerly oversaw physical therapy services for the New York City Department of Education, and Dr. Laurie Ray, an Associate Professor at UNC-Chapel Hill.  In a recent interview with Jen Kenney, a CCC-SLP with PresenceLearning who has practiced online for the last five of her 17 years of experience, Carlo and Jen unpacked everything a fellow SLP might want to know about teletherapy (also known as telehealth and telepractice), as well as what districts might want to better understand about this mode of delivery.  Check out highlights of Jen’s interview in the infographic below, or click here for the full interview.  

Working from home as a school-based online SLP, OT, or mental health professional has many benefits as well as its own unique challenges. According to a recent survey of PresenceLearning clinicians, working from home and setting one’s own schedule were some of the top reasons for making a career shift to teletherapy. Once clinicians begin their online practice, reasons for liking teletherapy shift to being able to serve kids who might not otherwise have access to quality care, using the PresenceLearning online therapy platform, and the sense of community and support that comes from being part of the PresenceLearning network. In a recent post, CCC-SLP and Senior Clinical Consultant Karin H. Koukeyan presented tips for setting up an organized and distraction-free workspace in the home. Now we…

By Karin H. Koukeyan Working from home as a teletherapy provider provides a multitude of conveniences by allowing a flexible work schedule. However, there is an ongoing challenge faced by individuals who choose a work-from-home lifestyle. Balancing your professional life with your personal life continues to be an ongoing stressor for many. This obstacle can be easily overcome with a few simple organizational tips. By designating a dedicated workspace that is clutter-free, you can maximize your effectiveness as a teletherapist and make an even bigger impact in the lives of many students. Choose the ideal space. Of course, the best scenario would be to have a separate, dedicated room that is exclusively used as a home office. However, this option may not be realistic for the…

© 2017. All Rights Reserved. | PresenceLearning makes live, online special education related services available to K-12 students around the country — and world. As the leader in the delivery of clinical services via the web, PresenceLearning has provided over one million sessions of speech-language therapy, occupational therapy, behavioral interventions and mental health services, assessments, and early childhood services.