Children’s Clinic Articles

From the Clinic (August 2017)

posted Aug 2, 2017, 10:52 AM by San Jose Scottish Rite

Mason received services at our clinic between the ages of three and four-and-a-half. Initially, Mason worked on some articulation skills, such as producing three syllable words, /w/, /l/ and l-blends, and /s/-blends at the beginning of his words. To his clinician’s surprise, after five months, he quickly learned and used these words and sounds in conversation! He worked very hard in his twice a week speech therapy sessions on having expected behaviors, following 2-step directions, using age appropriate vocabulary and irregular past tense verbs. We would typically spend our time doing directions involving body movements such as, “Sing part of a song and then take a bow.” These types of directions tended to be a bit more challenging for him then table-top tasks such as, “Find the dinosaur with the spikey tail on your paper (amongst three other different dinosaurs) and color him green.” Mason needed lots of repetitions and support to be able to follow directions involving his body movements.  We would often target producing irregular past tense verbs such as, “saw,” “hit,” “hurt,” and “went,” while playing with animal toys. He enjoyed having his toy penguin dive into the bean box and yelled, “The penguin went into the beans!” Mason would always have a smile on his face and was happy to see his clinician each week. Although he was seen for his full 18 months here, his clinician decided that since he continues to need to work on several goals, he will be put back at the end of the treatment waiting list, to be seen at a later time. His clinician is hoping that even though he is not working on these goals with her, he is still thinking and learning about them. Sometimes all we need is a little break. J And who knows! Maybe by the time he is seen here again, he will be able to do and say the things we practiced on his own without a hitch! Hope to see you soon Mason!


From the Clininc (July 2017)

posted Jul 10, 2017, 4:14 PM by San Jose Scottish Rite

Ty is one cool kid. When he first started at our clinic he was nearly unintelligible. He often cried because he wasn’t understood by anyone but his mom, which often made him so upset that he would completely shut down. Often children with a history of Childhood Apraxia of Speech or CAS have such difficulty with their sound systems that therapy is a long, arduous process. And frequently, the services they should be receiving in the public school system do not provide enough treatment. The American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA) that monitors the certifications of Speech-Language Pathologists indicates that children with CAS need speech up to five times per week. We are so fortunate that the San Jose Scottish Rite can step in to fill the gaps where schools and health insurances don’t. Ty received the speech treatment that he needed in order to now be ready for discharge! It has been a pleasure watching his speech and language grow and mature! I am truly honored that I had the opportunity to work with him and his family. He wrote me a little note on his last day recently, which made my heart smile. We wish you a lifetime of blessings, Ty and family!

Dear Miss Rachel,

Thank you for all your help. You have helped me so much. You helped me get passed [past] tons of other sounds. Thank you. I hope you have a great summer with your boys. You’re the best! - Ty


From the Clinic (April, 2016)

posted Apr 1, 2016, 1:25 PM by San Jose Scottish Rite   [ updated Apr 1, 2016, 1:26 PM ]

J. is a sweet six year old girl who has been seen at our clinic seondary to a mild articulation delay. J.’s mother heard about the clinic through a friend. When she first brought J. to our clinic she reported that J.’s friends were having a hard time understanding her. J.s mom observed that J. “dropped a lot of syllables in conversation”, which she said made it hard for J. to make friends. 
J. was evaluated at our clinic and was found to have a mild articulation disorder. However, her receptive and expressive language skills were within the average range or even in the above average range. Thus, therapy focused on improving the sounds missing in her phonemic repertoire, which included /l, sh, th/and /r/. Since therapy started J.’s mom has observed that “She is more aware of her own speech and [can] apply new skills to make words more clear.” J. has met all of her articulation goals except for /r/ and /th/, but she is well on her way to meeting her goals for these sounds too in the next few months! 
Often kids can feel bad about their speech when others don’t understand them. While we may not always hear children with speech and language issues state their feelings about their speech, we can observe their feelings in their actions and interactions with others. J.’s mom stated that since therapy started “She smiles more and is more confident with herself. She talks more. We have less miscommunication at home.”  
J.’s parents are so grateful for the services she has received at our clinic: “We definitely will tell other parents about this clinic. We are so thankful for the previous parent who shared this information. We were not sure where to turn... There was no way for us to pay for this kind of service ourselves. And the teacher here is so phenomenal. I see a big improvement in my daughter’s speech in just a few months as we were struggling with the same things for the previous two years. Thank you for blessing us with this service.”

From the Clinic (March, 2016)

posted Apr 1, 2016, 12:24 PM by San Jose Scottish Rite   [ updated Apr 1, 2016, 12:24 PM ]

E. is a delightful 4 year old boy who visits our clinic once a week for speech and language treatment.  He comes through the door with a smile on his face and walks straight back to the treatment room, ready to work! E. lives at home with his parents and big brother.  Some of his favorite activities include going to parks, bike riding, hiking, puzzles, play cars and taking baths.  The family was referred to our clinic by family friends who had previously attended.
E.'s mother stated " Our son was a 4 year old who could speak about 100 word approximations which could only be understood by our immediate family.  The breadth of his vocabulary was limited as he was adopted from China and had only been exposed to English for 18 months.  He was able to say some 2 word phrases." 
In November of 2015, E. was seen for his first treatment session and in 3 1/2 months, his progress has been tremendous. When he started, E. had a very limited sound repertoire.  He was using about 8-10 consonant sounds.  His speech consisted mainly of syllables marked by vowel sounds with the occasional consonant mixed in.  In addition to speech that was quite difficult to understand, E. also demonstrated receptive and expressive language skills that were low for his age.   
"What a difference it has made," E.'s mom reports,  " He can now say well over 150 word approximations, uses 4-5 word phrases and sentences and is developing syntax pairing subjects with verbs and his confidence has grown.  He can communicate more of his needs and desires with greater ease and less frustration, which makes for less guessing on our part.  He finds joy in successfully communicating something new, which brings delight to everyone."
Soon after treatment was initiated, E. began to use new consonants and with greater frequency.  It didn't take him long to develop understanding that communication gives him power, allows him to make choices, requests and have fun with those around him.  He is a very interactive little boy and was right from the start.  He just need a more reliable way to communicate to the world.  
Treatment has focused on forming words with different consonant-vowel patterns and to increase the amount and types of words he can use, to form phrases of increasing length.   
Thanks in great part to E.'s loving and supportive family, he is quickly meeting his goals and is becoming ready to move on to more difficult language based goals, in addition to his articulation work.   E.'s mother reported, "My husband and I feel so blessed to have found this clinic for our son as he greatly needs speech services and private therapy is so expensive.  We can't believe we found such a professional and caring speech clinic close to our home, where E. can receive the help he needs." 

From the Clinic (February, 2016)

posted Mar 11, 2016, 4:21 PM by San Jose Scottish Rite   [ updated Mar 11, 2016, 4:21 PM ]

T. is a fun, charismatic 7 year old boy who has been seen at the Scottish Rite Childhood Language Disorders Clinic for the past seven months. His mother brought him to the clinic due to difficulties with his articulation. Specifically, T. was demonstrating a fronted /s/ distortion that made his speech sound slushy. His mom reported that “T. was difficult to understand at times. He struggled with other kids at the park and elsewhere.”
Since treatment began at our clinic, T. has made excellent progress. He has worked with a program called “Straight Speech” in which the /t/ sound is used to facilitate the correct tongue position. The phonemes /s/ and /t/ have the same place of articulation. Thus, for a child who has difficulty figuring out the placement and airflow for /s/, this can be helpful. The program goes through a variety of steps including using a straw to produce centralized, sharp airflow. T. has worked very hard since treatment began.
His mother has noticed an improvement not only in his sound production, but she has noticed an improvement in his social relationships too! She commented that T. “has improved immensely. He’s more self-aware...We have the tools to help him and he can recognize when he needs to be more clear.” T. is such a fun kid to work with. He’s always showing off his dance moves, artistic abilities, and caring for other kids in the clinic. He is truly such a joy to see for therapy. His mother is pleased with the services at our clinic too. She stated, “The caring that is displayed by the therapists is exactly what a parent is looking for.” We appreciate you, too, T. and family!

From the Clinic (January, 2016)

posted Mar 11, 2016, 2:48 PM by San Jose Scottish Rite   [ updated Mar 11, 2016, 2:48 PM ]

L. has been receiving once a week speech therapy services at our clinic since February 2015. She is working on expressive, receptive and social language skills. She has been working on nine different goals and has already met two of them! Some of the goals she is currently working on are learning idiom meanings, following 4-step directions and producing past tense and irregular past tense verbs in sentences and in conversation. L. has a great sense of humor and enjoys telling her clinician about the funniest thing that she has most recently seen on TV. She does great impressions and is a joy to have in the clinic. Her mother C. wanted to speak upon her experience at our clinic:
“I heard about the San Jose Scottish Rite Childhood Clinic  through a teacher at my daughters school. Before receiving services at this clinic, it was really hard to work with L. I was not sure what she was capable of understanding. I was not sure what she was and was not understanding. In addition, she was having a really hard time in school each year.
 Speech therapy at this clinic  has helped L. so much. She has displayed some great developments! The school teacher and I have seen a really good increase in her vocabulary and overall speech. Her behavior is also much different. We do not go through “meltdowns” very much now-a-days. Her anxiety when she does her  home work has decreased! She makes more of an effort to try now in class and with her homework. She enjoys coming to the clinic and working with Miss Jenna to achieve her speech therapy goals.
There are not many speech therapy clinics that I am aware of that help the community the way this clinic does. I have worked in the education field for over 12 years and had no clue that this clinic existed. It was not until I sat down with one of her teachers and they told me about it. I went online and did some research, talked with my husband and we both decided that this clinic would be a good fit for L.. I reached out and they gladly talked to us and tested her. Miss Jenna  then developed a plan that worked. And so far, it has been amazing! L. is growing and we are very pleased with the outcome. 
The most rewarding parts of receiving services at this clinic are understanding the “needs” my daughter has and what she needs to work on in order to have more successful academic and social abilities. The clinic and their staff are very welcoming, positive, encouraging, and safe. It is nice to know that there is someone she can rely on. Someone to help her, coach her, and that is what the clinician and this clinic does. This clinics services has enriched our lives as a family. We will truly miss coming when our 18 months are done. I wish there were more resources and clinics like this one! Thank you Scottish Rite for all you do for us families. You are greatly appreciated!”

From the Clinic (December, 2015)

posted Dec 12, 2015, 3:14 PM by San Jose Scottish Rite   [ updated Dec 12, 2015, 3:14 PM ]

T. is a sweet 9 year old girl who is seen once a week for speech and language therapy at our clinic.  She has been seen for the last three months after waiting for some time on the clinic waitlist.  She is currently in the third grade at Discover 2 Charter School.  T. enjoys computer games, science and music.  She participates in a pre-public speaking class on Saturdays to help with her speech and language skills and confidence.   She recently dressed up as Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty for Halloween.  T. is a sharp and competitive game player and usually beats her clinician on a weekly basis during treatment sessions!
T.’s mother was referred to our clinic by San Jose State University.  She was concerned about speech sounds that were unclear and other sounds that were omitted.  Her mom felt that T. was losing confidence when speaking to adults because she often had to repeat herself.
T. has been working on her articulation, focusing on /r, l, th, er and r blends like br/ as well as age appropriate grammar skills.  During her short time in treatment, she has made great progress.  She went from being unable to produce the sound /th/ to producing it in words with nearly 80% accuracy.  T.’s mother is very dedicated to continuing her treatment at home and it really speeds up development and progress.
Since treatment began, T.’s mother reports, “The one on one sessions have increased her confidence, improved pronunciation of certain sounds and made T. feel happier.  In just 5 minutes per day of home practice, a big difference is noted.”  That home practice really does make a difference that her therapist sees as well.   T.’s mother feels that the one on one service, noted gains in her speech sounds and helpful and well trained therapist are very rewarding.
Even after waiting nearly 3 years on the waitlist, T.’s mother reports, “.  It is the best investment you can make for your child.  I’m grateful and feel blessed to be getting awesome service. We are very happy and it was worth waiting for—the very excellent speech therapy that normally we wouldn’t be able to afford, from a great staff who are well trained and kind.” 

From the Clinic (November, 2015)

posted Dec 12, 2015, 2:03 PM by San Jose Scottish Rite   [ updated Dec 12, 2015, 2:03 PM ]

D. is a spunky, fun six year old boy who has been coming to our clinic as a result of a mild articulation disorder. While testing of D.’s receptive and expressive language revealed language development within normal limits, he presented with a frontal lisp for the /s, z, sh/ and /ch/ sounds. In addition, he substituted /n/ for /l/ in all positions of words. D.’s parents were concerned about his speech and his ability to be understood so they brought him to our clinic. 
In the past year D. has made exceptional progress! He has met his goals for producing /l/ in all positions of words in conversation. To do this, D. worked with minimal pair words, which is a technique in which words sound the same but differ by one sound. For example, D.’s word list include “no” and low”, “nice” and “lice”, “nap” and “lap”. Using minimal pair words helps a child understand that their production does not match the meaning they are intending. It teaches them how to self-monitor their error. During targeted drill with the /l/ minimal pair words, if D. said “nap” instead of “lap” I would not give him a reinforcement of his production. Thus he was able to understand that in order to make his message clear, he needed to use the /l/ instead of the /n/ or his sentence did not make semantic sense. An example would be “I want to sit in mommy’s nap” verses “I want to sit in mommy’s lap”.   
D. is also making fantastic progress with his frontal lisp for /s, z, sh, ch/. He is now producing /s/ in the beginning and endings of words in sentences with some models. /sh/ is probably the most difficult sound for D. to produce at this time. We are working on tongue placement using a tongue depressor. It’s hard work but D. is now starting to approximate /sh/!D. has such a supportive and loving family. Each week one of his grandparents brings him to his treatment and the entire family helps with his homework. No wonder he is doing such a great job with such support! Great job, D.! Keep up the great work!

From the Clinic (October, 2015)

posted Dec 12, 2015, 1:31 PM by San Jose Scottish Rite   [ updated Dec 12, 2015, 1:31 PM ]

H. is a friendly nine year old boy who is being seen once a week for a 45 minute speech therapy session at our clinic. He has been attending speech therapy at our clinic for the last year secondary to a diagnosis of an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). H. is currently working on maintaining a friendly face, emotional regulation, body language regulation, answering social skills questions,  staying on topic, maintaining, asking questions, and turn taking in a conversation . He is also working on maintaining his attention and focus to auditory stimulus and social skills lessons for a total of five minutes. He is often asked to repeat back what was said to him to check his understanding. Some of his more recent social skill lessons include learning that when we listen to each other, nod our head, and share the conversation, it shows that we care about each other. H. is becoming more patient with his clinician and himself when he makes mistakes. He works well when he is working towards a reward such as swimming in the pool when he gets home. He is improving with these skills every day! 
His Mother, F., wanted to share about her experience thus far at our clinic. “I heard about the San Jose Scottish Rite Speech and Language Clinic from a friend of mine. Before coming to your clinic H. had a difficult time staying in a back and forth conversation. He also had a hard time expressing his thoughts, feelings, and needs. Since the treatment began at the Scottish Rite Clinic, my son is now able to express himself more, and stay in a back and forth conversation longer than before. He is also able to stay on task and talk about a subject more. I find it rewarding that H. can come to your clinic and get help with his social skills. He is getting stronger at his weak points! He is also improving in school and home and becoming more independent. I have had a very good experience at this clinic. The staff is very kind, respectful, polite and professional. I recommend this clinic to other parents because I have seen a big change in my child’s speech and language skills. I think other children will improve with their speech and language skills here too.” 

From the Clinic (September, 2015)

posted Dec 11, 2015, 10:54 AM by San Jose Scottish Rite   [ updated Dec 11, 2015, 10:55 AM ]

Do you ever wonder if what we do at our clinic really makes a difference? Rest assured; it does! We have an amazing job of touching the lives of families and their children and what a blessing it is to reach out to them and make a concrete change in their lives. Thank you time and again for putting your support behind this clinic. The families that we service each day are so grateful and we, as the Speech and Language Pathologists at this clinic, are humbled by the opportunities we have to work in the lives of others. Many of these families would not get any services without our clinic because they have been turned away or cannot afford to pay for treatment out of pocket. Wow! It truly amazes me that the San Jose Scottish Rite continues to reach out to families in need when other organizations do not have the ability or maybe the desire. Thank you for your ongoing support of our speech and language clinic. We are truly grateful. And, this little note that I received from a recent graduate and his mother of our program is meant for all of you. Thank you!  Rachel Sense, Clinician
“Dear Rachel, 
Thank you for giving D. speech. You’ve done a tremendous job and we are very grateful! Derek has always looked forward to his appointments and I have been extremely impressed with the right-on-target goals and your technical expertise. We are both going to miss you! Thanks so much! D. and D.”

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