Saturday, May 09, 2015

The 5 Pieces of Information You Need Before You Spend any Time or Money Helping Your Loved One Speak at Home.

May 8 / 2015

Hi everybody, 

Mark here, and am glad you are taking the time to read these documents I have prepared for you.  I am going to make this very short and sweet, and you will see the wisdom in the following information once you begin your own quest to learn how to stimulate speech and language like a professional who has worked 8-10 hours per day for over 40 years looking into the eyeballs of people with their loved ones who came to me so that they could talk again. Remember I am going to make this short and sweet.


There must be great desire on the part of the person with the speaking difficulty to speak again.  Not only that, but it must be matched by the caregiver or loved one who is desirous of better talking.  Both people in this scenario must be motivated and focused to get the best results possible.  The actual methods I use will be fun and interactional with no senseless drills and will not involve anything but a deep focus on the ability to speak.  We will stimulate them so that they will be successful from day one.  We will never give anyone materials they cannot do or handle.  In that way they will accomplish each step, and confidence will improve for both caregiver and person who has difficulty speaking.


I have given you a free screening test so that you can find out if the person with whom you are working is stimulable and can repeat vowels, syllables, words, word pairs, phrases and sentences.  If they can accomplish simple repetition of sounds or words that you give them, the chances of speaking improvement increases.  And…you will learn to speak in such a way that they can see and hear speech that is presented in a way they can imitate as long as they do not have a severe motor speech problem such as an apraxia.  Often apraxias will improve with the stimulation of speech with the Teaching of Talking Method if it is relatively new or if it is of mild to moderate severity.  I have also seen more severe apraxias improve with speech and language stimulation following very specific methods you can learn in this course or in upcoming courses.

Caregiver or Loved One Involvement

The Teaching of Talking is about stimulating speech and languge throughout the day and night.  If you are not up for that, let’s not even begin.  If you look at athletes or people who have gone on to greatness, you know they had great coaching and spent hours honing their craft or ability.  That is a REQUIREMENT with The Teaching of Talking.  It is not for the faint of heart, or anyone who is not committed to doing WHATEVER IT TAKES.  Enough said.

Speech and Voice That is Strong 

If you are going to model speech for the person who has difficulty speaking, you must be able to speak clearly.  Not only clearly but you must learn how to clearly articulate each sound of the words you are going to have the person say, and you will learn how to say them in a special way so that they can be repeated.  Often you will need to use your voice with urgency, and may have to speak much louder than you usually do.  Chances are that you will learn to speak more slowly since many people who have difficulty speaking have trouble comprehending, learning, or following directions.  How you say words or phrases will have a profound influence on whether they will understand and be able to imitate. The other day I had an e- mail from a reader who told me that the stimulation was not working.  I told her TO SPEAK LOUDER.  She then went back and raised the loudness of speech, and that was the magic bullet!  EUREKA, he was able to start repeating things that he wanted after her, where before that he was silent.  Your speaking will need to wake up the person you are working with, and will lift them out of the stupor some of our clients and loved ones are occasionally in.  Lots to do with your speaking; speed, loudness, emphasis of words and sounds, and many other things that you will learn when you start really using the book and video to learn to stimulate speech and language like an expert!

Love, Caring and Intimacy for Each Other

I cannot emphasize this one enough.  Maybe I should have placed this as the very first principle to consider before laying out the cash for more therapy or technology.
Love, caring and intimacy to me are just as important as the therapist or the method.
When there is love between the model and the person who has difficulty speaking, there is a bond that can never be broken.  Helping a person speak again takes that love and intimacy of talking to one another.  This is not about doing exercises.  That is the last thing the Teaching of Talking is.  What it is involves you engaging them in a special conversation at the persons’ level of speaking difficulty and talking about things that are vital, interesting and highly valued.  We will usually feel like talking more when it is about the things that we value.

I hope you have enjoyed this document.  You can learn how to stimulate language.  Check the above concepts and see how many of them apply to you.  If most do, please apply for your new position as:  Teacher of Talking.


Mark A. Ittleman, M.S., CCC/SLP
Senior Speech Language Pathologist

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