The power of intention
What does intention have to do with speech therapy?
We all write goals, some long term and some short term, but how do these goals translate into our sessions? At TALK, we believe in following the child’s lead and working their specific goals into the chosen activity. This approach keeps children engaged and motivated to learn. But how does this translate into intention?
In college, I coached boys competitive gymnastics. When I first started on this journey, I hated pretty much every moment of this. I didn’t know how to relate to boys, didn’t know their skill level, and basically was put into this position because I was the newest coach and was lowest on the ladder. One day not long into this I had an idea. I wondered what would happen if I focused my energy in places that I knew that I had some level of knowledge and skill. I focused on form and energy. I made a game out of every practice to see, “What would happen if __???” And guess what? Those boys ended up being a great team and taught me more than any other group of people. They taught me the power of focused attention and making ANYTHING fun.
During therapy sessions, I like to make a game out of each session that I lead. I pick a VERY specific target for the day and I see what I can do to make that happen. An example of this goal could be independence. I feel that the more independence a child has with a skill, the greater their use of that skill will be and the more often it will be used, resulting in generalization to new people, places and activities. In this instance, I will play with my prompting levels to see how much independence I can teach for a specific skill in those 50 minutes that I have. I am not simply going through the motions of integrating that skill into the tasks that we complete but I am intentionally seeking out ways to make it happen. I am on a race against the clock to see what I can make happen right then and there.
What if in each session we chose a skill and really focused our attention on it and played with different approaches to see … “what if __??”
I am a big fan of the saying that you can’t hit a target that you can’t see. What is your target for today? What can you do to MAKE that happen or at least get as close as possible?
March 15, 2021
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