While his peers enjoyed their 6 week break over summer, 13 year-old Troy was working hard and making great progress with his reading and spelling.
Troy has autism and his literacy progress had plateaued over several years. So in early 2017 – Troy’s final year of primary school – his Mum Hayley enlisted occupational therapy and speech pathology services to support her son’s development.
“With high school coming up I wanted to set Troy up for success and thought some extra support with literacy would be helpful,” Hayley said.
“He can get anxious about spelling and writing so building up his confidence has been a really important focal point.”
Therapy Focus Speech Pathologist, Kate Dixon explained that a strong working relationship with Troy’s teachers, plus a lot of hard work by Troy himself was the key to their success.
“We worked closely with Troy’s school and teacher last year, ensuring we were all on the same page and working towards the same goals,” Kate said.
“This meant that even when his therapy team wasn’t there, Troy was still being encouraged to use the strategies we’d developed for him and there was constant support.”
“When school finished up for the year we organised a short block of therapy sessions to maintain and continue developing the gains we’d made. Going into the 2018 school year Troy’s reading and spelling had gone up almost 2 whole year levels.”
“Troy and I use a lot of different strategies in our sessions. We often use a whiteboard and magnets to practice putting together different sounds that make up real and nonsense words. This has helped Troy increase his fluency and vocabulary.”
Mum Hayley has been amazed by Troy’s progress and says she’s still seeing big improvements.
“From this time last year to now Troy’s writing has hugely improved,” Hayley said.
“He’s using longer sentences and his spelling is so much better. High school is a big change but he’s developing the skill set he needs to handle it.”
Learn more about Therapy Focus’ services for people with autism.
Learn more about the role of a Therapy Focus Speech Pathologist.
Pictured: 13 year-old Troy at school with Speech Pathologist Kate Dixon.