Long term goal: Johnny will complete at-home practice to promote carryover of learned skills and generalization; completion based upon parent report in 8/10 opportunities.
We see that word, “carryover”, and many of us wonder “What does carryover actually mean?” As defined by the Merriam Webster Dictionary, carryover is “something retained or carried over.” Pretty simple, right? But in the therapy world, there is so much that one little word can entail.
In order to ethically graduate or dismiss a child from therapy, we need to know that they are using their new skills independently and outside of the therapy room. We love and enjoy working with each and every one of our clients, but unfortunately we can’t be with them all the time. This is where our home practice comes into play! Home practice is a huge part of reinforcement and maintenance of newly acquired skills.
Numerous studies have found that parent-implemented interventions for speech language therapy development do in fact have positive effects. In comparison to therapist implemented intervention alone, children with both therapist and parent-implemented intervention were shown to have greater progress towards their therapy goals over time in the areas of receptive and expressive language, articulation, and social language skills. Research has also found that minimal parent training is required to see improvements, and even exposure to parents’ day-to-day use of language is advantageous.
The use of home practice is also beneficial aside from improving speech and language skills. The acceleration of progress due to home practice could potentially mean less time in therapy, therefore deeming it cost-effective. On top of increasing skills and proving to be economical, use of home-practice can also facilitate improved quality of life. It is not uncommon for speech and language delays to influence self-esteem, communication of wants/needs, and family relationships. Through consistent modeling and implementation across environments, children are more likely to gain and apply these skills.