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Frequently Asked Questions
Do you only work with kids who have autism?
My little sister was born with significant global developmental delays (not autism) and over the years I've worked with people who have a variety of disabilities. I love to see all people have tools to communicate. What I've learned is that the kids that I really click with are those who find communication tough, and they're often on the spectrum. Besides the catchy name, autism is just what I do best. So, if your child has a different diagnosis let's chat and see if I would be a good fit for your family.
What about big kids and adults with autism?
We all know that it's harder to learn a new language the older you get. That's why I'm passionate about doing what I can to help ensure all children enter adulthood with a communication system. That said I'm a believer in life long learning so I'm happy to help whether you're 3 or 63!
Do you only work with ABA programs?
When there's a team of skilled therapists intensely working on communication goals in a systematic way everyday, it helps me to be the most effective and helps your child achieve their goals... If tomorrow I decided that in a year I'm going to run a marathon, but I've never run a mile, I'd need to start practicing and building my endurance by running A LOT. Once a week or so isn't going to cut it in making me an athlete. It's the same for any skill and learning to communicate is definitely one that takes lots of practice and dedication. I like to work with the whole community - so that includes the aunties, cousins, neighbours and BFFs too. The more support the better!
Do you teach more than manding?
Absolutely. Communication is way more than just requesting. However when you find yourself in a foreign country using Google translate, are you looking up how to comment on the ocean view, or are you asking "Where's the bathroom?". I don't want to limit a child's language to only 'I want' statements, but at the end of the day if I can't tell someone that I'd like to have fermented grapes or barley and hops, then I'm not a happy traveller.
I'm about to get an iPad and/or an AAC app for my child. What would you recommend?
That depends on your child, their needs and skills. It's helpful to chat and I can point you in the right direction - to best answer that question let's connect!
What technology do you support?
The "i" in iTalk Autism is for all technology that starts with an "i": iPhone, iPod Touch,and iPad (mini and Pro too). So sorry, no I can't recommend any Android or Windows apps!... P.S. I also love my Apple Watch because it's an extension of my iPhone!
My child has some speech, would your services still be helpful?
Are you happy with the progress your child is making?
If so, and if you already have a wonderfully skilled team in place then keep doing what you are doing!
If you think your team could use some fresh ideas to help achieve communication goals then I'd love to help!
We already have an AAC app going - is there anything else we need?
If the device was lost, stolen, or broken would it be easy to get it all back up and running? I thought so, but when we woke up one morning to find everything gone due to a home burglary, and we were without my son's critical tools for many hours - which felt more like days - I realized I needed a better plan than crossing fingers and digging for passwords on post its. I can't imagine having to try to help my son cope with missing equipment for longer than a day...
If your child doesn't have their device, are they still able to communicate effectively? I'm now a big believer in having a paper based system for emergencies, and making sure kids know how to use it.
iTalk Autism can help with this plus putting an organization system into place to make sure your devices can quickly and easily be restored - just in case!