Book Review: Becoming Verbal with Childhood Apraxia
Becoming Verbal with Childhood Apraxia written by Pam Marshalla is one of my favorite books. It is an excellent read for parents and for therapists. Pam wrote the book as if she was writing to a parent. The book has a lot of information but explained in an easy format. Sometimes books can be challenging to read when you are a parent because you only have 5 minutes here and there. The book is organized into small sections, making it easy to read when you don’t have a lot of time. She applies the information into real life situations (like bath time). This makes it easy to carry over the new information with your child during your daily routines. She also has some examples of some conversational exchanges which helps explain what turn taking would look like with your child.
This is an excellent book for any parent or early intervention therapist. Even though the title of the book has the word “apraxia” in it, I think it is helpful for all children who are learning to talk and become more verbal. It is especially helpful when speech isn’t developing as easily as you would expect. As a parent, it can be scary to see a delay in your child’s speech. You might also feel helpless if you don’t know what to do. This book gives you more information and more tools to help relieve some of the anxiety you might be feeling.
Apraxia is a neurological condition that makes it hard for the brain to send messages to the mouth (and other areas). With a lot of work the body and brain can form those connections so that speech is easy. I’ve worked with some children with the diagnosis of apraxia but after therapy you could hardly notice a difference. I’ve also seen some children around 2 years old who had some of the apraxia “warning signs” to develop speech quickly soon after therapy started. Other times, I have seen children with apraxia work really hard and develop slowly. Everyone is different.
The only complaint I have about this book is the title. I don’t like to worry parents about a diagnosis of apraxia early on when the child might not have it. However, I really feel like the information in this book is really helpful. So try not to focus so much on the diagnosis but more on the interaction with your child. Find ways to have fun. Be playful. Enjoy the smiles and the laughs. Laughing helps increase airflow which helps your child find their voice. If you are caught up too much stressing about a diagnosis then it can be hard to play and have fun.
Please click here to read more about the warning signs of apraxia.
CASANA (The Childhood Apraxia of Speech Association of North America) is an excellent resource! Click here to learn more.
You can purchase “Becoming Verbal with Childhood Apraxia” here. The book is 109 pages and costs around $20.00.