Theory and Practice in Teacher Education Publications and Other Works

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Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups

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Purpose: This tutorial describes how a speech-language pathologist (SLP) might incorporate writing-based principles into therapy sessions to target a variety of speech and language goals for Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) children in addition to writing. We present an illustrative example of one SLP’s experience implementing Strategic and Interactive Writing Instruction (SIWI), an approach to writing instruction designed for DHH students, within a public elementary school setting.

Method: We motivate this tutorial by first reviewing the literature related to the challenges for SLPs in targeting written language within therapy settings and then discuss writing and communication difficulties for DHH students. We describe the components of SIWI with illustrative examples of how one SLP applied these principles within her therapy sessions with DHH students. The SIWI instructional approach integrates well with the roles and responsibilities of an SLP in providing therapy across a variety of communication domains for the DHH students. This tutorial describes how the SLP scaffolds production of various morphological and syntactic linguistic structures as a natural part of co-creating text with her students. The highly interactive nature of SIWI allows for targeting pragmatic language goals with student-student and student-SLP interactions. Students also have opportunities for practicing articulation when generating or revising ideas for the co-created text and when rereading the text.

Conclusions: SIWI provides a framework to address DHH students’ speech and language goals within authentic writing activities which may support increased generalization into classroom academic tasks. We provide suggestions about how an SLP can incorporate the principles of SIWI into therapy sessions to integrate writing instruction with the various speech and language goals they already target as a part of implementing a student’s Individualized Education Program.

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