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Searching for Speech

Nolan is a sweet Kindergarten-aged boy who is supported in Pacekids’ afternoon Speech and Language Enhancement program. Diagnosed with Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS), Nolan has struggled the past several years with family and friends not being to understand what he needs or is trying to say.  

In September, Nolan had difficulty properly pronouncing his G sound. Since then, due to all his hard work and support from his Speech Language Pathologist and classroom staff, he is now correcting his G sound by himself during conversations! Nolan is also receiving Occupational Therapy support to further develop his coordination and fine motor skills. Nolan has shown wonderful gains in increasing his overall skill with scissor cutting by maintaining proper body mechanics supporting his hand-eye coordination and producing smoother and more precise cutting motions. He is always enthusiastic about demonstrating skills that promote his independence – especially with dressing! Nolan is now able to put on his jacket and manage his zipper independently, which is a difficult skill for anyone. And, with minimal support, he is now able to manage buttons in dressing practice activities. 

Nolan has become a confident young student and person over the last 5 months. He loves to engage his peers in social/cooperative play, imaginative play, and the sharing of books! Nolan loves story time and increasingly participates in the predicting and re-telling of stories. He proudly counts the calendar days and is now able to reference the daily labels and place them in the correct spots for “Today is……Tomorrow will be….and Yesterday was…..!”. He recognizes all his calendar numbers to thirty, months of the year and days of the week! At his daily learning centres, Nolan is no longer timid about “how” to work at each centre, and his enthusiastic confidence shines as he jumps right into each activity, demonstrating that his fine motor and pre-printing skills have progressed significantly since the start of the school year.  He completes each activity independently while following 2-3 step instructions.

“There are no words!  Nolan is singing songs; he’s telling us about his schoolwork and his crafts. The progression he has made is dramatic!” says Cindy, Nolan’s mother. “He has a long way to go to speak like a 5 ½ year old but the techniques and community at Pacekids has excelled him to levels I didn’t think possible just one year ago.”

Nolan is thriving! He is making new friends, enjoys singing his ABC’s … all experiences that are taken for granted, but not for families with children afflicted with speech and language delays.

Nolan is becoming such an active learner, and always wants to practice, or do more while being continually excited to show his progress. With the gains that he has made this year, the team is confident that he will continue to make large strides towards his goals!

Pacekids Programs is a charitable organization that strives to empower children with special needs and their families through excellence in therapy and education. Operating for over 25 years and funded through Program Unit Funding (PUF) from Alberta Education, & Family Support for Children with Disabilities (FSCD), Pacekids serves children with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Global Developmental Delay, Down Syndrome, Speech & Language delays, and more through a variety of programs in the Calgary area. 

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