Speech Therapy Success Story- Jane

Jane is an 11-year-old girl who enjoys playing with Beanie Babies and Barbie dolls. Her parents referred Jane for speech therapy due to concerns about her difficulties with speaking clearly and completing given tasks such as daily chores without repeated reminders. Jane’s overall speech intelligibility was notably compromised and was comprehensive to listeners about 50% of the time, especially if the subject of the conversation was unfamiliar to her. She required verbal reminders 100% of the time, even when a single task was given. Initial Speech Therapy Evaluation During the initial speech and language evaluation, the evaluating therapist, Makiko Ogawa, learned that Jane was receiving speech therapy services in a special education classroom at school due to having been diagnosed with intellectual disability. After standardized tests for articulation and language were administered, Makiko gathered additional data and information from Jane and her parents to develop the most appropriate treatment plan. Considering the evaluation results and Jane’s unique learning styles, therapy goals were set in order to maximize Jane’s cognitive-communicative functions, instead of working on specific articulation or language skills. “Things I Can Do Better” Once therapy began, Jane and Makiko discussed what makes a person’s speech intelligible or unintelligible, and they demonstrated intelligible vs. non-intelligible speech. Based on the discussion and reverse demonstrations of the patient’s speaking demeanor by her SLP, Jane chose three elements: the rate of speech, the volume of speech,  and eye contact as “the things I can do better.” Those three elements were practiced repeatedly via a variety of therapy tasks and multi-modal assistance, like using a mirror and creating recordings. As for Jane’s difficulty of completing the given multiple tasks, the visual task board of “First…then…” was introduced. This is a type of low-tech, assistive communication device to indicate with picture icons what needs to be done […]


Read More

Employee Spotlight- Michelle

Meet Michelle Tebout, a Therapy 2000 Speech-Language Pathologist in our DFW division. She was born and raised in Northwest Indiana (near Chicago/Lake Michigan) and recently moved to Fort Worth to enjoy the warmer weather. Education Michelle received her Bachelor’s degree from Indiana University-Bloomington and a Master’s from Indiana State University. Michelle was introduced to speech therapy by a sorority sister who encouraged her to take a speech/audiology class and was immediately hooked. The more Michelle learned, the more she fell in love with the field.  She loves working in pediatric home health because the setting allows her to work alongside caregivers in the child’s environment, and it requires quick thinking Hobbies in Fort Worth and Around the World Michelle comes from a big family. She has three older brothers and four nieces/nephews. They very close-knit, and she has already welcomed a few visitors since moving here three months ago! She is having fun getting to know Fort Worth and eating at various restaurants. Some of Michelle’s hobbies include traveling the world, cycling, hiking and spending time with her 8-month-old puppy, Mowgli. Michelle has traveled several places over the years, and her favorite so far was Bangkok, Thailand.  Her next travel destination is Barcelona, Spain Pediatric Background In Indiana, Michelle worked in a pediatric clinic where she served both ECI and private-pay patients. She has also for an acute-care hospital. Since graduating, Michelle’s passion has been working with the pediatric population. She enjoys early language development as well as helping patients with ASD and motor-planning difficulties. Michelle is excited to expand her knowledge on feeding interventions in the next year. She is looking forward to meeting and working with other therapists throughout the organization.


Read More

Physical Therapy Patient Spotlight — Olivia

Olivia is an adorable 17-month-old girl who was born 6.5 weeks early with a diagnosis of Trisomy 2 (duplication of part of chromosome #2). Olivia spent her first few months in the NICU and had a tracheostomy placed at 7 months of age. Due to Olivia’s rare diagnosis, she has low muscle tone, which contributes to feeding difficulties, problems with breathing, and delayed development of motor skills such as sitting, standing, and walking. Olivia’s physical therapy treatment over the past 2-3 months has focused on helping her to become independent and focuses on mobility. Olivia’s most recent accomplishments are transitioning into sitting all on her own and commando crawling! Go Baby Go! Oliva’s therapist, Heather Pitner, PT, and a group of THERAPY 2000 therapists attended a workshop to learn how to modify toy power vehicles through GoBabyGo!  This program started several years ago at the University of Delaware by Cole Galloway, PhD, PT. After studying infant behavior, Dr. Galloway became interested in closing what he calls “the exploration gap.”  This is the gap that we see between children with typical mobility and those who experience mobility impairments such as cerebral palsy, spina bifida, and Down syndrome. When an infant or toddler reaches for an object, scoots across the carpet, or learns to walk around the room, she’s learning to interact with her environment in a way that forges new connections. A mobile child learns how to explore a room and approach other children. Go Baby Go! provides powered toy cars to developmentally disabled children from 8 months to 4 years old. This enables these children to move themselves similarly to typically developing children. Research has shown that early mobility opportunities lead to an increase in social interaction and cognitive development.   New Surroundings The moment Olivia was placed in her new […]


Read More

Employee Spotlight — Lora Kirkland

Meet Lora — a self-described “West Texas girl” from Odessa who graduated from Texas Tech University in Lubbock. She, along with her husband and daughters moved to Aledo, Texas in January 2012 for a new job and great schools. Family Life Lora has been married to her husband, Chad, over 11 years. Together, they have two amazing and crazy girls, Kylie and Libby, as well as a rescue dog, Clara. Lora and Chad stay active by running, doing Crossfit, and they recently began biking with their daughters. Their family hobbies include taking adventures, hunting and being outdoors. Lora and Chad have passed their own love of the outdoors to their daughters, who now have memorable stories of exploring the family land and going on adventures. This fall, Kylie and Libby learned to shoot a bow. Lora said it has been fun to share a new activity they all can do while making family memories. Volunteering in the Community Most recently, Lora participated in the Carson Leslie Foundations annual BECK Bow Shoot, raising money for pediatric brain cancer research. This event was special to Lora because she works with a child who recently began treatment for brain cancer. Through the foundation, he has received numerous gifts and has been connected with an organization that will take him on a hunting trip geared specifically to him and his specific needs following surgery and treatment. Green Apple Therapy Lora’s background includes both clinic and home-health therapy with Green Apple. When offered the opportunity to help open Green Apple’s clinic in Weatherford, Texas, she was eager to bring a needed resource to the area. Lora served as Green Apple’s Clinic Director for almost four years before transitioning back into a full-time home health therapist position. Lora believes both settings are uniquely fulfilling, and she […]


Read More

Speech Therapy Patient Spotlight: Josue

Josue is a very happy 4-year-old boy who loves Lightning McQueen, playing games with his little sister and friends, and watching movies. Josue was diagnosed with a Specific Developmental Disorder of Motor Function and a Mixed Receptive-Expressive Language Disorder. He started receiving speech therapy services with Therapy 2000 in May of 2018. When therapy began, Josue had a vocabulary of approximately 5 words, could not follow simple 1-2 step directions, and only communicated via gestures and single word utterances at times. Ashley Jarrett met Josue when she was shadowing physical therapist Emily Parks, as a new employee.  Josue had been waiting for ST services for approximately 2 years, although he was out of her treatment are Ashely wanted to work with Josue over the summer.  After only 2 and a half months of services, Josue is now able to speak in three to four-word utterances, identify all his body parts, label common objects, follow 2-step directions, request help, and communicate wants/needs in English and Spanish. Josue has come a long way in such a short amount of time due to his hard work, mom’s willingness and motivation to work with him daily, and a physical therapist who went above and beyond to recommend speech/language services to help this awesome kid and family! Ashley is so proud of all the progress they were able to make and the goals they were able to accomplish in such a short time! Ashley Jarrett, M.S. CCC-SLP   After Ashley started working with Josue, Emily was able to notice a huge increase in his talking during physical therapy sessions. Josue was able to name all the colors for the toys that we typically play with. Also, instead of pointing at the toy he wanted to play with, he would say words such as “block”, “ball”, […]


Read More