Have you ever wondered what it’s like to have a Listening and Spoken Language therapy lesson online? These sessions are the reality for around 50 of our families living regionally or even overseas, enrolled in our Telepractice program. In the wake of COVID-19, many of our families traditionally supported through our in-centre services have also transitioned to Telepractice as an effective, easy alternative to their typical lessons.
We recently spoke with Robyn, mother of three-year-old Kyle who has profound hearing loss and wears cochlear implants. A Brisbane resident some years ago, Robyn now lives in Hong Kong with her husband Marc. However, when it comes to receiving support from Hear and Say distance is no a barrier for this family of three; they access our LSL therapy services via Telepractice.
We chatted to Robyn about her family’s experience, and some of the common questions families have about Telepractice.
1.What is it like setting up your Telepractice session?
It is incredibly easy to set up. All you need to do is download the Zoom app on your computer or smartphone, and your listening and spoken language specialist will send a link to connect to each individual therapy session. Even my extremely technologically unsavvy mother was able to handle this process when she came to stay!
2. What do you consider the benefits of Telepractice to be?
To be able to access Kyle’s therapy online is absolutely essential to his ongoing language, communication and hearing development. Thanks to this wonderful technology, Kyle can see, hear and interact with his listening and spoken language specialist, Jessica Balfour-Ogilvy, who in turn can continue to monitor his progress through these regular therapy sessions.
3.Have there been any challenges? If so, how did you troubleshoot these?
I don’t think we encountered any major challenges. When Kyle was younger it was sometimes a little difficult to keep him engaged throughout the one-hour session but by planning the lessons around his favourite topics or toys, he was able to sit still and concentrate better.
4.What’s involved in preparing for a session?
Jessica and I have weekly planning sessions in preparation for Kyle’s Telepractice lessons. It’s beneficial to be able to tailor-make lessons. It’s a great opportunity to chat through a theme for the week, and also to discuss personal concerns or work out areas in which we feel he needs a little more attention together.
5.Would you recommend Telepractice to other families?
Unquestionably! Telepractice lessons are a fantastic alternative to in-person lessons, particularly for any families like ours, who are not able to visit the Hear and Say in person on a regular basis. We have been accessing services via Telepractice for the past three years and I have no doubt that these virtual face-to-face sessions have been instrumental to his advanced development.
Click here to find out more about Hear and Say’s Telepractice program.