I love Ryan’s stories. I am probably biased because I am his mom, but I really love how he weaves in things and ideas that are in his mind. In the following stories, you can tell that he has a lot on his mind: learning to speak, the beach, his sister, his sister growing up (I won’t spoil that one), and learning to speak (do you see a pattern here?) I hope that you enjoy them as much as I do.
ONCE THERE WAS A HANDSOME TEENAGER BUT HE COULDN’T SPEAK. THE TEENAGER TRIED TO SPEAK TO OTHERS (MEANING THAT HE DID NOT SUCCEED.) THE TEENAGER THOUGHT THAT HE HAD TO LEARN TO TALK. HE TRIED TO HAVE SOMEONE HELP HIM. HE GOT INTERESTED IN SPEECH THERAPY TO HELP HIM SPEAK.
MANY YEARS HAD GONE BY. LEARNING TO TALK WAS HARD. ONE DAY HE OPENED HIS MOUTH AND THE SOUNDS HAD BEEN MADE. TALKING TOOK HARD WORK TO ACCOMPLISH. THE TEENAGER HAD MET BIG GOALS.
MORAL IS HARD WORK MAKES THE TASK NOT SO HARD.
THERE WAS A GIRL THAT LOVED THE BEACH. THE GIRL TALKED ABOUT THE BEACH EACH DAY AND REALLY TALKED A LOT. THE GIRL TOLD HER MOM, “ONE DAY A LONG TIME FROM NOW, CAN I LIVE AT THE BEACH?”
THE MOM TOLD HER, “SURE.”
THE GIRL ALWAYS LET HER FRIENDS KNOW HER PLANS.
A LITTLE TOO EXCITED, THE GIRL COULD NOT WAIT. SHE RAN AWAY TO THE BEACH.
THE GIRL HAD MADE HERSELF A HOME FROM SAND AND SLEPT THERE THE WHOLE NIGHT. THE MORNING CAME HARSHLY. THE SUN WAS TOO BRIGHT. AND THE GIRL DECIDED TO HEAD HOME.
SHE RAN BACK HOME CRYING. THE GIRL TOLD HER MOM THE COMFORT OF HOME WAS ALWAYS BETTER THAN THE MAGIC OF THE BEACH. THE GIRL CHANGED HER MIND. THE BEACH WAS NOT WHERE SHE WANTED TO LIVE.
CAN I CREATE THIS STORY DEDICATED TO GRACE? TO GRACE, THIS STORY IS FOR YOU. LOVE YOU, GRACE.
THERE ONCE WAS A GIRL WHO TRIED TO COMFORT MANY PEOPLE. THE GIRL DID NOT LIKE OTHERS TO BE TOO SAD.
ONE DAY, THE GIRL FOUND HER BROTHER CRYING. THE GIRL TRIED TO COMFORT HIM. CRYING, THE BOY TOLD HER THAT ONE DAY SHE WOULD GROW UP AND HAVE TO MOVE OUT.
THE GIRL TOLD HIM THAT EVEN THOUGH MOVING OUT TO BE A GROWN UP SOUNDS HORRIBLE, THE TRUTH IS I WILL HAVE TO DECIDE A LOT OF THINGS FOR MYSELF. THEN I CAN DECIDE TO COME HOME TO SEE MY FAMILY. TEENAGERS DECIDE THINGS FOR THEMSELVES.
THE LESSON IS WHEN YOU BECOME A TEENAGER, REMEMBER YOUR GREAT FAMILY.
DO NOT FORGET ME.
SO ONCE THERE WAS THE NICEST, SMARTEST, MOST INTERESTING TINY BOY. THE TINY BOY THOUGHT THAT TO HAVE ONE THING–TEAM OF TEACHERS–TO HELP HIM HAVE THE HAPPIEST, MOST AMAZING SCHOOL.
TO CREATE THIS TINY BOY’S SCHOOL, THE MOM TAUGHT HIM THE TOUGHEST LESSONS. THEN THE OTHER TEACHERS TAUGHT HIM TOO. THE OTHER TEACHERS ONLY HAD THE TOUGHEST LESSONS TO MAKE THE TINY BOY HAVE THE HARDEST SCHOOL. THE TINY BOY NEVER MADE HIS TEACHERS THINK THAT HE COULD TALK.
THEN ONE DAY, THE TINY BOY MADE A STORY TO TELL THE TEACHERS HE WANTED TO TALK. THE TEACHERS TRIED THEIR BEST TO TEACH TALKING.
THEN THE DAY CAME THAT THE TINY BOY TALKED TO THE TEACHERS. THE TINY BOY COULD TALK TOO. THE TEACHERS THOUGHT THAT THE TINY BOY DID NOT TALK. THE TINY BOY PROVED THEM WRONG.
So now I am reaching out to our readers (especially the speech therapists out there) for tips on working with a child who is severely apraxic in his speech. Ryan is so motivated to talk (like RPM and bike riding) but has so much difficulty. He often has trouble even producing any sound when he is on the spot. He will try and he can get the right number of syllables sometimes, but the approximation is not really close to the words. When Ryan was 4 years old, he had about 40 approximations (that were distinct and close) for words but then gradually lost them after two seizures two weeks apart. I think that with a lot of work, he can learn to speak. I am not sure that he will ever be as conversational as he is when he spells on his letter board, but I know that one of his goals is to eventually speak.
I think that PROMPT therapy would be very helpful for him (we did this when he was 3 years old) but Ryan does have some anxiety about seeing a speech therapist. I would love to get some exercises to work with him at home. He allows me to manipulate his mouth to try and make sounds and he watches my lips very closely when I try to have him say a work back to me. I have included a short video of Ryan trying to produce sounds so that you can see how hard it is for him. Thanks for any advice!