You may sometimes hear modeling AAC referred to as aided language input. Aided language input is an evidence-based strategy for helping children learn to communicate using AAC!
Here are some strategies for how to use aided language input with a child who is learning how to communicate using AAC!
- Model in natural contexts – Model during activities that you are already doing, or that you know your child enjoys, such as getting ready for bed or watching TV!
- Model without expectation – Talk to your child using their AAC system without prompting them or expecting them to give a particular response. For example, when it’s time for dinner, you can say to them “I am HUNGRY. It’s time to EAT dinner!”.
- Attribute meaning to your child’s actions – Observe what they are already communicating to you in other ways, and show them how they could say it on their AAC system! For example, if your child brings you the remote control or points to the TV, you could model “It looks like you WANT to WATCH TV”
- Model core vocabulary and fringe vocabulary – They are both important!
- Include peers and siblings – They can be great peer models, and your child can see everyone using their AAC system!
- Don’t be afraid to make mistakes!
For more tips on using aided language input to support AAC, reach out to your Speech Language Pathologist or Assistive Technology team.