Classroom Toolbox Training

The Classroom Toolbox is a virtual toolbox of resources to help teachers provide adapted communication supports to students in their classrooms. In here you'll find the Classroom Communication Supports Checklist to help you determine what supports you already have in place, ones you have but aren't using, and ones you are interested in exploring. For every communication support, there's a learning module to explore, with photos, descriptions, components, links to comprehensive resources and curated YouTube videos. These modules will help you confidently increase the communication supports for your students!

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Building the Communication Classroom Series

  • Getting Oriented (3 lessons)​
  • Present Level of Performance: How do my students communicate? (3 lessons)​
  • Can You Hear Me Now?   Classroom Routines, Expectations & Visual Supports (7 lessons)​
  • Simple Communication Systems: Light Tech (5 lessons)​
  • Embedding Communication Into Your Classroom (5 lessons)​
  • IEP Time! Progress, Present Levels and Goals (2 lessons)​
  • AAC 101: Simple Steps for Student Communication​
  • The Core Word Classroom​

There is a wealth of information and materials for you on our website, so you may be asking yourself, "Where in the world do I start?" No worries, we've got you! This is the first stop in your training! In this unit we will be answering some primary questions to get you started!

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Starting Young: Communication in Early Intervention & the Preschool Classroom

Our specialized training hub dedicated to supporting communication success in Early Intervention in the home and our preschool classrooms

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Communication Systems Series

  • Getting Started with a New Communication System (3 lessons)​
  • Understanding Robust AAC Systems (3 lessons)​
  • AAC Feature Considerations (5 lessons)​
  • Speech Generating Devices & Applications (3 lessons) ​

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Partner Strategy Kits

  • Interaction Strategies (3 lessons)​
  • AAC Access (3 lessons)​
  • Engagement (3 lessons)​
  • Language Support Strategies (5 lessons)​

Partner Strategy Kits

AAC Partner Strategy Kits are engaging posters/handouts, descriptions and short videos explaining and modeling techniques for you to use to help your student be willing, and able to communicate using their AAC system!

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AAC Assessment Series

  • Communication Matrix:  Forms & Functions​
  • Student Communication Goals Grid​
  • Every Move Counts, Clicks & Chats: Motivators, Sensory Needs, Forms & Functions​
  • Communication Sample & Analysis​
  • Dynamic AAC Goals Grid (DAGG)​
  • AAC Evaluation Genie Training​
  • AAC Communication Skills Assessment-2​
  • Dynamic AAC Advanced Consultation FORM​
  • Team & Family Involvement

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DTA Schools Evaluation and Funding

  • DTA Schools Process Introduction​
  • DTA Schools Referral & Records Review​
  • DTA Schools Dynamic AAC Assessment & Trials Process​
  • AAC Funding Sources​
  • SGD Evaluation Report Writing​
  • Working with SGD Manufacturers
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Empowering Families: AAC At Home

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High Frequency Core Words & Messages

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AAC 101

5 steps to move from training to talking, give you a clear path for you and your student learner. Learning to communicate is a shared journey between the learner and their partners, and that makes sense! Communication is a shared activity between two people. It is the means for us to make connections, meet our needs, engage socially, participate in shared experiences, and bridge the gap between our experiences and sharing these their partners.

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Expansion Strategy

Most children learn language one word at a time. Once they have enough of these word (around 50!) they can begin to put them together to create their own unique messages. The expansion strategy is a way to help bridge the student's learning, from single word messages to multiple word messages. It's a very simple strategy! Once your student is using single words, you can respond to them with a slightly longer model. If they say "eat," you can say, "Yes, you eat!" If they say "go," you can model "go fast!" using your voice AND the AAC system. Give it a try!

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AAC Generalization

Lesson

1

AAC Partner Strategies Training

Communication is a dynamic process, between at least 2 people.  It requires us to not only teach our students news skills, but also to learn new skills ourselves!

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Lesson

2

Modeling AAC: Aided Language Input

When a communication partner is speaking, the words are also "modeled" or shown using the AAC system.

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Lesson

3

Expectant Pause Strategy

Is it really as simple and being quiet and listening?  Yes!  Sometimes just waiting 10-15 seconds is all it takes to encourage our student to begin to use their AAC system to tell us something!

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Lesson

4

Consistent Access to AAC

Keeping the AAC system available at all times is the very first step in making AAC work for your student!

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Lesson

5

Student Engagement Strategy

When we are teaching students to communicate, we must ensure that they are interested and engaged so that they will attend, learn and remember how to say what they want to say, when they want to say it!

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Lesson

6

Respect & Reflect

The easiest words and messages to learn, are ones you are already communicating in other ways! Let's look at how we can target meaningful messages by following our student's lead!

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Lesson

7

Role of Motivation

When we consider the process of teaching new skills and language to our AAC users, it is imperative that we remember the role of motivation and fun when teaching. If the student is motivated by a favorite activity, person or toy, they will be much more likely to learn and ENJOY learning! Effective and efficient with a side dish of FUN!

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Lesson

8

Repetition with Variety

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Lesson

9

Expansion Strategy

The expansion strategy is a way to help bridge the student's learning, from single word messages to multiple word messages.

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Lesson

10

AAC Generalization

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Lesson

11

Communication Temptations

How do you encourage spontaneous communication?  Sometimes it’s as simple as setting up a situation that gives your student an interesting reason to communicate!

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Lesson

12

Beyond Yes and No

It’s very easy to get caught in the habit of asking questions that only require a “yes” or “no” response when you are talking to your student using AAC. Let's talk about that!

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Lesson

13

AAC Momentum Strategy

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Lesson

14

Descriptive Teaching Strategy

The Descriptive Teaching Model is a strategy that teaches students to use high-frequency, common words rather than more rarely used words.

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Lesson

14

Joint Action Routines

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