Announcement : 

Welcome to Patricia Avenue School website!

Speech Language Therapy

Our role at school

The Speech Language Therapists (SLTs) work alongside the classroom team to support students’ communication in a range of everyday activities and across different school and community environments. We understand that whaanau/family is at the centre of each child’s life and take time to listen and find out how communication is working at home, and what you would like to achieve for your child at school. SLTs also support students with safe eating and drinking if needed.

We can help with

Eating and drinking  
Part of a Speech Language Therapist’s job is to help with safe eating and drinking- we use the same kinds of muscles for speaking as we do for getting kai to our puku! SLTs support whaanau to make informed choices about what their child eats and drinks, alongside the hospital team if needed.
The SLT team also use play to help students eat a wider range of food.

Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC)
Many students at Patricia Avenue School need additional help to communicate. AAC (Augmentative and Alternative Communication) allows students to get their message across using signs, symbols, objects, or text. The Speech Language Therapists can assess each student’s needs in collaboration with their whanau and school team and match them with the most suitable communication system. We support all school staff to use AAC in a supportive and inclusive manner. As a team we have staff who are qualified to apply for funded equipment such as iPads and software to help students with communication.

core board

Language skills
At Patricia Avenue School, we support the development of receptive language (what we understand) and expressive language (what we say). This might look like supporting comprehension with visuals, expanding vocabulary, or building sentences. It might also be about developing more reasons to communicate, such as greetings, comments, requests, humour, and sharing emotions. At Pat Ave, language therapy is often supported through AAC.

Social Interaction
Engagement and interaction with other people are at the centre of all communication. The Speech Language Therapy team support students to build relationships with those around them through participation in positive and enjoyable interactions which are led by the student and their interests. This might involve an adult attributing meaning to any sounds, movements, or expressions a student makes to reinforce these foundation communication skills. Another common strategy we use is supporting participation in fun and repetitive people games which provide rich opportunities to build on a range of communication skills.

Working on speech sounds
We can support students who have difficulty with clear speech to learn to make new sounds, or to say important words more clearly. We also support students to use strategies to help clarify their message if it gets lost.