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AAC Social Group

13 December 2021

Two females in Christmas garb holding AAC devices standing in front of a Christmas tree pointing and holding a tag

What do you get when you have a team of awesome speech pathologists and two highly engaged final year speech pathology students... an interactive AAC Social Group! 

There were several motivators for our Speech Pathology team that took the AAC Social Group from an idea to actuality.

  • They knew seeing other people using devices can be really motivating for device users
  • They thought it would be great to help device users connect and expand their social network
  • They loved the idea of running a group that could be inclusive of people using a range of systems and access methods (e.g., directly touching screen, using switches, eye gaze)
  • They thought it would be a great opportunity for final year Speech Pathology students, Candice and Larissa, to meet a diverse group of device users and develop inclusive group activity ideas that could create opportunities for communication.

The AAC Social Group commenced in October and ran every Wednesday afternoon for 1.5 hours for six weeks.

Each week had a theme, such as Music, Art, Science, Games and in the last week the group ended with a Christmas Party.

During group time, members practiced greeting each other, talked about things they liked about the theme for the session and then moved into more activities such as making slime, decorating cookies, playing instruments, taking turns at online games, or painting with marbles. Standing female wearing Christmas headband & showing Ipad to not in frame person, with a male sitting down next to her

Indigo’s speech pathologists and final year speech pathology students Candice and Larissa worked with group members and their communication partners to support them to achieve individual goals linked to their device use.

There was a great mix of group members, with some people using devices such as iPads accessed with direct touch, and also eye gaze devices including the Tobii Dynavox i15+.  At the end of each session members were provided handouts with a brief homework task and information about the theme for the next week. These were modified to be accessible for each group member.

Feedback from the group was really positive overall!  Some key bites from the feedback our Speech pathology team have received.

Two females sitting either side of a male in a wheelchair, all wearing Christmas hats & looking at a mounted ipad“A, has absolutely loved this group…everyday she asks us and talks about the group”

“H, really enjoyed the hands-on activities…where he was able to take it [things he had made] home”

“All activities were well accommodated to the needs of each participant whilst still being extremely engaging.”

“I would absolutely recommend it [the group]. A has really improved with using more descriptive words on her talker.” 

Our Speech Pathology team will be looking at offering further groups, with different ages and focus areas in the January school holidays.

To learn more about Indigo’s Speech Pathology services for yourself or someone you know, and to explore appropriate AAC (equipment and device) solutions contact our friendly customer services team on (08) 9381 0600 or email help@indigosolutions.org.au