Today I am finishing up details for an ongoing consultation that I have with a school system here in Massachusetts pertaining to Language Learning Disabilities. I am, as you know, an ASHA certified Speech/Language Pathologist. Most of my professional life—over forty years—has been spent researching and working with children who have reading disabilities (from the code to comprehension) and how the children and their reading are impacted by oral language deficits/differences. Consequently, in addition to ASHA, I belong to several other associations and look forward to the arrival of their journal publications. One of these associations is the International Literacy Association, formerly known as the International Reading Association. The IRA publishes The Reading Teacher and The Journal of Adult and Adolescent Literacy.
As an SLP with a great interest in reading and writing, I enjoy the points of view of authors within these publications and use the articles to provide discussion among the educators with whom I work.
This issue of the IRA’s publication Literacy Today (Volume 33, Issue 2 (http://www.literacyworldwide.org/get-resources/em-literacy-today-em-magazine) contains the twentieth compilation of data related to “What’s Hot” in literacy education. I find this very interesting each time it is published. It contains the opinions of “25 literacy leaders across North America and the world” concerning the “attention that various topics were receiving in the field of reading education.” As noted in the article, the emphasis is on the word attention (my italics), not importance.
I have noted the focus on oral language in several of the articles within The Reading Teacher this year.
What should the addition of oral language to the What’s Hot list mean to Speech/Language Pathologists in our work with students having reading difficulties? These oral language areas, in my opinion, should be “very hot.” These areas have been my personal focus in research and practice for over 45+ years!
Oral language development, especially scaffolding at the sentence and discourse levels, is our focus here at MindWing Concepts, Inc. I encourage you to look at our tools and approach, especially MindWing Concept’s newest product, “Oral Discourse Strategies.”
All of our tools, as well as our extensive on-line lessons that available at no cost, will assist you in collaborative efforts as you work with literacy professionals within your “settings.”