I communicate with a symbol sequence system, as I am able to communicate in a “natural” speed and I like to work with my preschool mentees with the, single symbol sequence system, as they start to understand that it is a good and quicker method of communicating. I find that the mentors are more open and pliable to generally teach the mentees how much quicker and efficient communicating with quick phrases is compared to typing everything out. Communication devices are equipped with one hit symbol sequence which is ideal for a preschool client to start communicating with. As a client grow the symbol sequence can be changed and tailored to their needs until they graduate to a 128 symbol sequence device. The Method is not a new method as I have gone through these steps as a child and it is the same program that I am communicating with today. As speech-language pathologists and mentors we want the clients to talk at a typical speed or as closest to it as they possibly can and they will be able to stay at the “normal” speed of communicating with society and they will be able to keep up with their school work if they are able to write papers with the symbol sequence system.
Being a mentor with significant physical disabilities who has pain I am a user of a unity program as it helps the back pain because I am not typing everything out letter by letter. We can help the clients from developing pain and to keep up with their school work if they can get accustomed to communicating with their quick phrases system. I like the clients communicating with the Unity system because it enables them to make sentences themselves which is a limitless system and it is like communicating with their mouths. For Unity users we are able to look at the pictures and know how to put them together for words or beginning of sentences. This allows the clients to communicate with the speed that society is used to or at least close to it. At least for myself I encourage the clients to make use of their program as they are able to take care of school work quicker when they are using a program with quick phrases or symbol sequence system. I have the system grow with the mentees as if they are growing up communicating with the normal ability of communicating. We want the clients to communicate at the level that they would have been communicating with their natural voice. I know of a young woman who is refusing to use the quick phrases and it is taking her longer than expected for her to complete school as she is taking long to complete school work.
As professionals in speech therapy it is our job and responsibility to assist and push for our clients to communicate at a semi normal speed. If they want to spell a device can be found that will allow them to spell at a quicker rate. Importance of working with the client on giving them what they want is crucial as they would not use the device if they don’t like the device. The individual will not use the device if they don’t like the device which is the opposite of what you want to happen, you want to customize the device so that the client will want to communicate with the device. We have the knowledge and education to help the clients to use the device to better their lives and using quick phrases helps the client to have a full life.
Until Next Time, Enjoy Your Children