Welcome to Speech & Language at Laning Avenue!
My name is Ilissa Abovitz and the 2019-2020 school year will be my fourth year working at Laning Avenue School! I currently live in Bergen County with my husband and daughter. I was born and raised in the suburbs of Philadelphia and prior to working in Verona, I spent the three years living in Chicago, Illinois, where I was a Speech Pathologist working with preschool, elementary, middle and high school students. I have experience working with a wide variety of pediatric populations including children with autism spectrum disorders, articulation and phonological impairments, expressive and receptive language delays, hearing loss, fluency and voice disorders and social-pragmatic difficulties. I received my Master’s degree in Speech Language Pathology from La Salle University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and my Bachelor’s degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders from Pennsylvania State University. We are! I am looking forward to a wonderful year ahead!
Areas Covered by Speech-Language Pathologists
When students are screened for speech-language eligibility, four communication areas are assessed: articulation, language,voice, and fluency. Students are screened for speech-language eligibility in preschool and kindergarten. The following information is assessed to determine whether students are eligible for speech-language services. Teachers and parents should consult a speech-language specialist to further clarify this information.
Speech-Language Specialists.....identify, assess and treat speech and language problems which include articulation, fluency, voice disorders, receptive and expressive language and pragmatic skills (social skills/life skills).
Articulation - Articulation refers to the production of the phonemes. Some students do not produce phonemes correctly in single words or conversation. Young students may produce articulation errors but they are considered developmental errors (they are still learning!). However, older children who are not producing these sounds correctly are referred for evaluation and possibly therapy.
Language - A student who has difficulty comprehending or producing language for communication purposes. Also known as receptive or expressive language skills, a student with a receptive language disorder may have problems with auditory memory for spoken directions, comprehending spoken language, following directions and attending during listening activities and using pragmatic language such as conversational competence, and expressing thoughts and ideas appropriately.
Voice - A student who is experiencing hoarseness, harsh or raspy voice that interferes with communication during conversation. If this is a recurring or consistent problem, the student should be referred.
Fluency - A student who is experiencing difficulty with the flow of speech in connected discourse. Interrupted speech flow can be observed when a student repeats, prolongates, or hesitates during production of syllables, whole words or phrases. Some students can be observed to have facial or other body struggling behaviors while speaking. Some students will also avoid speaking situations.
If it is determined that a student has a communication disorder, the student is eligible to receive services. Multiple therapy approaches and materials are employed including technology and social skill outings, which will assist the student in the treatment process. Students receive speech-language services on a regular basis as determined by their Individual Education Plan (IEP).