PROMPT Therapy – Session 1

Yesterday was Noah’s first PROMPT therapy session with Marcus.

He says I have to stop EVERYTHING as far as working with Noah on articulation.

At this point, Noah can’t even say ah without putting a T on the end of it – it’s the only way he knows how to make his jaw come back up.

Marcus is all about going back and training and retraining Noah’s oral motor patterns so that he can form sounds correctly rather than using the compensatory movements so common for kids with Down syndrome.

In traditional speech therapy, we look for Noah to make sounds any way he can.

In PROMPT, it’s the correct formation or none at all. And at this point, it seems it would be better for Noah to not make the sound at all rather than making it incorrectly, since we’re all about creating correct motor patterns.

This is totally against my nature – I’m a go getter and I like attacking projects head on when it comes to helping my courageous kiddo speak. It just feels wrong not to capitalize on each and every noise Noah is able to make.

But I have to be honest and say that going the traditional route has not produced the progress towards speech that I had hoped to see.

So Marcus says I need to focus my energies on language, not speech, for now at home. I’m allowed to put pressure on Noah’s jaw and try to get ahhhh sounds from him without letting him jut his jaw forward (jaw sliding is the “technical term.” The jaw slide is a developmental delay that is interfering with Noah’s ability to coordinate the correct movements with his mouth. Our job (mostly Marcus’) is to train Noah’s mouth to make the correct movements to provide the framework for the sounds.

All I get to do is the ahhhhh?

Talk about backtracking!

AHHHHHHHHHHHHH! (As in AGHHHHHH – this is going to be torture.)

So we track the progress, and I give it at least three months before I re-evaluate.

Looks like we’ll be working on a lot of receptive language concepts, and doing a LOT of praying!

Anybody have any experience with PROMPT therapy? Give me a little hope to hold on to. I am quite convinced, if PROMPT therapy is going to work at all, we are with the right guy for the job.

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4 thoughts on “PROMPT Therapy – Session 1”

  1. Hi there,
    Don’t lose hope….. My son works with our private therapist with the PROMPT method and it took a little while, but it works. he picked up on it with time. That is just the nature of the whole apraxia condition. I’ll keep you in my prayers!

  2. I remember when I was studying Spanish, my teacher made such a HUGE deal about how wide our mouth opened, the placement of our tongues and even the set of our jaw. I just wanted to say the words in Spanish and get on with it. But, learning how to properly position my mouth completely changed my ability to recreate a proper accent and increased other’s ability to understand me. I know it’s frustrating when your kid is already developmentally behind where you want him to be. The idea of stepping back even further seems insane!!! Don’t feel like all of your hard work was for naught. Eventually, what you have taught him will mesh with proper speech framework. And you’ll be blessed with another step forward. Sending prayers for progress and patience!

    1. Oh my gosh!!! Thank you so much for that info!!! Right now I’m consoling myself with the knowledge that most people with Down syndrome are difficult to understand because of all the compensatory speech movements. PROMPT is all about getting rid of those compensatory movements (or preventing them in the first place) and producing “perfect” speech. So it’s very nit picky – but knowing that nit pickiness works when learning a foreign language is very encouraging news for us in the long term.

      Keeping my fingers crossed!

      Blessings,
      Alyson

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