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Sequential Oral Sensory (SOS) Feeding Program

The SOS Approach focuses on increasing a child’s comfort level by exploring and learning about the different properties of food. The program allows a child to interact with food in a playful, non-stressful way, beginning with the ability to tolerate the food in the room and in front of him/her, then moving on to managing the smell of the foods, learning about how foods feel on the body and in their mouth, and then enjoying tasting and eating new foods following the Steps to Eating.

An initial assessment is conducted which includes a comprehensive case history of your child’s development and eating. We assess your child’s oral motor skills to look at how they bite, chew and swallow food safely. Next, we look at how your child responds to different foods, sharing with them three foods that they would typically eat and three foods that they typically refuse.

SOS therapy involves a carefully planned hierarchy of different foods that are presented to your child in the session. The SOS-trained speech pathologist engages your child with the foods and leads them through the Steps to Eating. Parents participate and engage with the food along with their child.

SOS feeding therapy may be offered individually or in a small group. Children attend for eight sessions and parents conduct follow-up therapy meals at home to provide many opportunities for learning about and feeling comfortable with a range of foods.

SOS feeding sessions may be offered via telehealth or in the clinic.

More information can be found here: https://sosapproachtofeeding.com/why-sos-approach-feeding/

Cooking Club

This program for children 8 years and upwards extends the feeding program with hands-on fun in the kitchen. Offered via telehealth, parents and children cook together with the session led by our SOS-trained speech pathologist. The session involves talking about food goals, cooking a recipe together and taking an investigative approach to learning about and trying foods.

To find out more information about feeding therapy, or to book an initial appointment, please contact our clinic.

Do you love working with children and families?

Are you ready to make an amazing difference in the life of a child?

VersaLearn Speech Pathologists are passionate, creative and dedicated to helping every child achieve their communication potential.

If that sounds like what you want from your career, come and join and our team!

We offer an exceptional Graduate Program for new graduate/early career Speech Pathologists that is designed to provide you with the skills, knowledge and confidence to work with children and families.

Graduate Program

We provide:

- a six-month induction program that:

  • teaches all the key assessments for our client population
  • provides opportunities to observe other speech pathologists conduct sessions
  • demonstrates key speech, language and literacy programs used with children
  • clearly outlines clinical procedures

- weekly focus sessions over two years on areas of clinical practice and knowledge

- weekly mentoring sessions and a fortnightly collaborative session with a senior clinician to support your growth with clinical planning and implementation

- fortnightly peer mentoring sessions

- regular clinical discussions focused on evidence-based practice

- a wide range of clinical assessments to broaden your skills

- scheduled administration time for report writing and therapy planning

- regular professional development both externally and internally

- your own laptop

- administrative and IT support

- an extensive range of resources to develop your evidence-based practice and provide fun, innovative therapy!

 

Career Pathways

At VersaLearn we recognise and encourage passion projects and opportunities to further develop your skills in areas of interest. 

We can offer career pathways in:

  • Autism Spectrum Disorder assessment and therapy
  • feeding therapy utilising a range of evidence-based programs (e.g. SOS program)
  • literacy support using programs such as Sounds-Write
  • the delivery of Professional Learning programs and workshops

 

Roles Available

Graduate Speech Pathology/Early Career Speech Pathologist

We are looking for Speech Pathologists to join our team now and at the beginning of 2021. If you are looking for a supportive workplace to start your career, then join our team!

 

Experienced Speech Pathologist

Do you want flexibility with your role? We can offer hours and days tailored to your needs, as well as time off in the school holidays. 

 

All applications will be considered as they are submitted; there is no end-date on this process.

The position offered will be tailored to the successful new team member.

We look forward to welcoming you!

For further information, or a coffee and chat, contact Jane Henderson to discuss the details of the role.

 

We provide assessment and therapy services to children from 18 months – 18 years of age with a range of speech, language and communication needs. Our team of dedicated speech pathologists provide a family-centred approach to support your child with building their skills to become confident, effective communicators.

We know that children learn best through play and exploration and strive to make our therapy sessions fun, meaningful and supportive.

We aim to support your child’s communication in different education settings so we offer childcare, kinder and school visits to provide therapy, demonstrate strategies and consult with educators.

 We are registered providers of the NDIS.                                                                   

Please contact us on 1300 787 404 to discuss how we can help. 

Early Talk Boost is a targeted intervention program, delivered by a trained Early Years educator to small groups of children aged 3-4 years old that have delayed language. The intervention helps to boost their language skills to help narrow the gap between them and their peers. 

Early Talk Boost uses a language tracker so that children are assessed at the beginning and end of the intervention to monitor their progress.

Early Talk Boost is implemented three times a week for 9 weeks. Each group session takes approximately 15 minutes and is conducted with small groups of children (up to 8 in a group).

 

The skills covered in Early Talk Boost are:

•Attention and Listening

•Understanding of Language

•Speaking skills

•Personal, social and emotional skills

 

The Early Talk Boost program includes a comprehensive resource kit containing:

•Early Talk Boost Intervention Manual with a teaching script for every session

•Early Talk Boost Teacher Manual including pre/post tracker

•Parent Workshop Materials

•Early Talk Boost Kit Bag (includes objects / toys)

•Stickers and certificates

•10 x 8 Jack and Tizzy Story Books

 

Evaluation showed that after Early Talk Boost, children make statistically significant progress in their early language. On average they make 6 months progress after a nine-week intervention helping them to catch up with other children their age. This is twice the amount of progress of children not having the intervention. 

 

The Early Talk Boost training is a one-day course.

 

Play

  • Pretends to talk on the telephone
  • Gives a response to 'give me a high five'
  • Puts sequences of play together e.g. puts man in the car, drives the car up to the garage, puts petrol in the car, pays the money and drives away
  • Begins to act out familiar sequences from book or TV shows e.g. pretends to be Fireman Sam putting out a fire

Understanding

  • Points to actions in pictures e.g. show me the boy swimming
  • Understands big / little
  • Responds to simple questions e.g. what is that? where is your ball?
  • Identifies several items by function e.g. which one do you read?

Spoken Language

  • Uses three-four word sentences frequently
  • Uses action words e.g. running, jumping, eating, playing
  • Names three common colours
  • Uses plurals e.g. cars, socks, books
  • Uses position words e.g. in, on
  • Says if boy or girl
  • Counts to three

When to seek advice:

  • If your child does not show interest in other people
  • If your child's play is limited to lining up toys
  • If your child shows repetitive behaviours e.g. turning light switches on and off
  • If your child is not joining words together in sentences
  • If your child is not following two-step instructions
  • If you can't understand 50% of what your child says to you
Lego Bricks

Lego™ Club is a fun, Lego™-themed group that is designed to build the social competence of children with autism spectrum disorder and social communication difficulties. Through participation in Lego™ Club children learn and practice a range of social skills such as:

  • working in a team
  • sharing and turn-taking
  • negotiating appropriately with peers
  • giving and listening to instructions
  • using eye contact and appropriate body language
  • having conversations
  • enjoying playing together to achieve a goal

Read more: Set up and run a Lego™ Club at your school

 

Children who have difficulty with /l/ generally replace the sound with /w/ e.g. lion becomes wion. The error is made due to incorrect placement of the mouth to produce the sound.

Here are some ways to help a child produce the /l/ sound:

1. Instruct the child to put the tip of their tongue behind their top teeth (see figure 1). Check the position with a mirror. Ask the child to raise and lower their tongue several time to practice moving their tongue into the correct position. Ask the child to say /la/. Encourage the child to 'smile' as they say the sound to make sure that their lips do not move into a rounded /w/ position.

2. Have the child practice this sequence of sounds /t/-/d/-/n/-/l/. Shape /l/ from /t/ e.g. /ta-la/, then /d/ e.g. /da-na/ and then /n/ e.g. /na-la/.

3. Describe to the child the different mouth positions for /l/ and /w/. /l/ is a sound made with your tongue behind your top teeth; /w/ is a sound made by your lips 'kissing lips'. Practice moving from a /l/ to a /w/ sound so that the child can feel the difference in mouth placement. Use this information when practicing saying /l/ words e.g. What did your mouth do at the start of the word - was your tongue up or did you use your kissing lips?

Figure 1. Tongue position for /l/.

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