Chain Letter Link Up

This post is brought to you by the word:

suite [sweet] /swit/


1. a number of things forming a series or set.
2.a connected series of rooms to be used together: a hotel suite.
3.a set of furniture, especially a set comprising the basic furniture necessary for one room.
4.a company of followers or attendants; a train or retinue.


No, you’re not in high school again and yes, you read the title correctly! I’m happy to participate in this great idea, but let me explain what’s going on. An SLP blogger, Teach Speech 365, started a chain letter, of sorts, of SLPs who blog. She created a series of questions and then asked some SLPs to respond on her blog, then they were to have 2 new SLP bloggers respond on their blogs and so on. Somehow I got asked to participate and so here we are (thanks for inviting me, Mary).  Many of the SLPs have posted free downloads from their blogs and/or TPT stores but I don’t have any such thing. However, if you keep reading, one of my blogging SLP friends has a potential gift for you! I’m hoping you’ll take some time to visit Teach Speech’s site and track through some of these blogs to find new ones you like!

Wait, did you hint that there’s a giveaway??

Yes, I did.  Sean graciously provided a code for the Mr. Reader app. I’ll give it away randomly and to be entered to win you need to leave a comment by January 1st citing how you keep up with technology without becoming overwhelmed!

I’d like to thank both of my participants for responding to this during the busy holiday season. Without further ado I’d like to (re)introduce you to two bloggers I really enjoy:

Blogger #1: Sean Sweeney

1. Your name, email, blog address, link to TpT store if you have one
Sean J. Sweeney,
2. When and why did you start blogging?
I’m coming up on my 3 year anniversary on SpeechTechie.  I first became interested in blogging when pursuing my 2nd master’s degree in Instructional Technology.  I did this program online through a local college and it involved a lot of writing, which I really enjoyed.  At the time, a few of my friends were using LiveJournal and so I started keeping a personal blog there, goofy stuff about TV and travel, etc. After being an SLP in the school setting for about 9 years, an opportunity arose to take a position as an Instructional Tech Specialist in the Middle School setting in my district.  While there, I started reading a lot of tech blogs and using Google Reader extensively to follow these.  I missed my day to day work as an SLP and the tech integration I had done in that role, so I decided kind of impulsively to start a blog to share ideas about these tools. I was really inspired by Richard Byrne’s Free Tech for Teachers, but wanted to do something that of course showcased websites through a “Language Lens.” I toyed with the idea of calling it SpeechieTechie, and am glad I didn’t! Too many “ies”=overly cutesy. I had no idea the response would be so positive.  When I started, I only knew of about 3 or 4 others blogging about SLP work-Barbara Fernandes and Eric Sailers among them.  It’s great that there are now over 70 blogs in the SLP Blogs Bundle!

3. What is your favorite population to work with?
Elementary- High School Language and Social Cognition are the areas I feel most passionate about.

4. How much time per week do you spend blogging and/or creating materials?
I aim for 1-2 posts a week (been a little under lately but that’s definitely a goal for 2013), and I’d say the writing itself takes about 1-2 hrs weekly. However, I probably spend about 3 additional hours weekly reading blogs, twitter, and other resources to get ideas that can be “re-purposed” in the form that you see on my blog.  I also blog for other people and do some writing that takes additional time, as does corresponding with people who ask questions, etc.  So, I’d say about 5 hours total.

5. What’s your favorite topic to create materials for?

Technology, clearly! Lately I have been focusing on iPad apps as there is obviously a huge interest in that area, but I also want to keep letting people know about what’s available on the web. You’ll note that I often don’t write about dedicated SLP apps (I do think they are terrific and I helped make some at Smarty Ears and also present on dedicated apps). However, I do get more excited about helping people think outside the box when applying apps, websites and technology in our work.

6. What’s the best thing about blogging?
My blog has clearly been gratifying to me and has actually become somewhat of a business of its own, opening the door to consultation and presentation opportunities that have allowed me to create my own job, to some extent.  But the actual writing is a process I love, and it’s immensely rewarding to see and hear that people are reading and finding the information helpful.  So, it helps me feel I am making a difference not only for other professionals, but for kids who struggle with language and learning disabilities as well.

7. Do you have any blogging tips?
Hmmmm.  Well, keep it brief (I don’t always succeed on this one).  Use the technology well by providing links and images.  Avoid drama and controversial topics, unless you like that kind of stuff (I do not). Schedule posts ahead of time so that you can write when you have time, and publish regularly.  No idea is too small.
8. Add a question and answer of your choice. OK…How can SLPs keep up with technology without becoming overwhelmed?For this I will again mention the SLP Blogs Bundle (you can see a video tutorial at that link) and Google Reader, which syncs with iPad apps such as Mr. Reader, which I have provided a code for as part of this response.  There are lots of great SLP bloggers writing about tech and non-tech areas in the bundle, and Reader lets you give it all a quick skim.  The starring, tagging and sharing functions within the app will help you organize and access the information when needed, as well as connect you to colleagues (even just by sharing a post via email) that will help you see the value of being involved, even receptively, in social media.

Blogger #2: Shareka Bentham

1. Your name, email, blog address, link to TpT store if you have one

Shareka Bentham,,, @speechreka on twitter

2. When and why did you start blogging?

Started out in 2010, just wanted to share some of my ideas and the crazy things I did in therapy, with others.

3. What is your favorite population to work with?

Children with complex communication needs

4. How much time per week do you spend blogging and/or creating materials?

blogging- not as much as I used to. Probably once a month now, hopefully more often in 2013. Creating materials probably 3-4 times a week.

5. What’s your favorite topic to create materials for?


6. What’s the best thing about blogging?

Seeing the feedback from others who have tried out your materials/ideas

7. Do you have any blogging tips?

Keep it simple and don’t bite off more you can chew. I still am yet to write a blog post that I promised ages ago. Life happens. Oh and have fun with it! 

8. Add a question and answer of your choice (can be speech related or not).– What is your favourite thing to blog about? Mine is making therapy functional.


Please drop a comment to share how you keep up with technology in this tech filled world! You could win a Mr. Reader app on January 1st!

I’ve created a LinkedIn profile…. Now what?

This post is brought to you by the word: minutia [mi-noo-shuh] /mɪˈnuʃə/

noun -usually, minutiae (plural)

1. precise details

2. small or trifling matters

Want to know more about using social media for professional information and collaboration? See the top right sidebar for links to the entire blog series —->

You’ve heard from Mary Huston on an introduction to LinkedIn and how to create a LinkedIn profile. This is Mary’s third and last installment on LinkedIn to help you get the most out of it as a PLN (personal/professional learning network). Take it away, Mary!


Okay…you’ve created your account, built your profile, and found a few connections. Now what? When does the networking start? For many months, I had no idea what else I was supposed to do on LinkedIn. My profile sat unattended (and unviewed) and I was disappointed. After deciding to sit down and really look at the site, I realized there was so much more to it than I was using. There were actually groups on LinkedIn. Groups! Who knew? Once I figured that out, I was able to begin using LinkedIn for what it was designed to do – Professional Networking. Thankfully, you won’t have to wait quite so long.


At the top of your LinkedIn home page or profile page or pretty much any page in LinkedIn, there are tabs available. These will take you directly to those areas. Hovering the mouse over “Groups” will give several options including: Groups You’ve Joined; Groups You May Like, Groups Directory, and an option to Create a Group.

If you click on Groups You May Like, you’ll be taken to a list of groups that are based on your profile. There is a logo for the group, a short paragraph describing the group, the owner, the number of members, and the option to join. There is also a “similar groups” button. If you click on the name of the group (usually in blue), you’ll be taken to that group’s page. There you’ll have the option of joining the group (again), seeing information about the group including any websites that may be linked to the group, and members of the group within your network. The members of the group within your network will be listed by the degree of separation (1st, 2nd). If you click on the name of one of those individuals you’ll be taken to their profile page where you’ll have the opportunity to see their information, add them to your network, or send them a message (although you may need to be a paid member to send them a message).

Why Should I Join a Group

There are many reasons to join a group. Many of the groups are filled with professionals searching for answers, sharing information and resources, and discussing hot topics of the profession. In addition, responding to messages and sharing information consistently in a group is a good way to establish yourself as an expert (or at least almost an expert). Perhaps even more importantly a member can review which individuals are most influential, stay current with discussions, and following influential discussions and members. In addition, some groups have jobs tabs and can be a great way to put yourself in place for a new position.

Finding Specific Subject Groups

There are a couple of ways to find specific subject groups. Clicking on the Groups Directory (under the Groups tab) will provide a list of featured groups. On that list you have the option of joining the group, finding similar groups, or just reading over to see all the different groups. Some groups allow any LinkedIn member to join; other groups require members to be pre-approved. Usually, that’s a way to make sure the person belongs in that group. For instance, to join a speech language pathology group, the owner may request individuals to provide information showing they are SLPs and not a spam engine. Some groups also have subgroups within their main group. That allows for a bit of different topic maintenance and diversity without the group being overwhelmed and unwieldy.

On the Groups Directory page (and a few others) there is a sidebar titled Search Groups where you can search by keywords. You can narrow the search by clicking on the All Categories widget and changing it to a narrower group (alumni group, professional group, etc.). You can further narrow the field by choosing which language you’d like. Click search and your page will be filled with any available groups. It may be necessary to tweak your search keywords; for instance, Speech Language Pathologist came up with six hits when I looked just now….however, speech therapy came up with 70. Now would be a really good time to watch this video.

Creating Groups

LinkedIn members also have the option of creating groups. To create a group click on Create A Group tab. You will need to attach a logo (after making sure you are not infringing on any copyrights of course), create a group name, determine the type, and write a description. Next you’ll need to determine if anyone can join or if they will need to request to join. One nice feature, is you can allow members of certain emails to invite others or be pre-approved to join.

Managing Email

Basically, anytime a member creates or responds to a message, an email is generated. When an individual joins a group they can choose to have emails (messages) sent one at a time or by digest (daily or weekly). A digest version allows for easier handling of the messages which is vital if it’s an active group. For individuals choosing daily digest, all the recent messages are saved and sent in one email each day. Links and headers to all the messages are in the email and the reader can choose which specific message they want to open. Weekly digest allows an individual to receive just one email a week with all the messages intact. If the group is very small and there are only a few messages a month it probably won’t matter a lot. However, some groups can have many messages in a day. I prefer to receive all my messages from LinkedIn groups as a daily digest for easier handling and less confusion. You can manage general email settings by clicking your name in the top right and then clicking ‘settings’.

If you start with one message setting and find that it’s not working for you, it can be changed very easily. If you click on My Groups, you will find a list of all the groups you belong to. When you click on the name of the group you will see there are several tabs: Discussions, Members, Search, More. Click on More and you will see a drop down box with Updates, My Activity, My Settings, Subgroups, and Group Profile.  If you click on Updates, it will give you a list view of all the recent messages and comments. You’ll also have the chance to just see messages from people whom you follow. My Activities gives you the opportunity to see all your posts and any comments that have been made.

To change your message settings, you will want to click on My Settings.

If you are on the LinkedIn group page and click on your picture you will see your posts and responses/changes to your post. This is an easy way to stay up to date with your posts and anyone who has responded to you without getting sidetracked by the other messages (which is a very real possibility).  You can also change your groups settings from your general settings.

Miscellaneous “Stuff”

There is a LinkedIn Blog for learning about all the new information LinkedIn provides (features, etc.) .

LinkedIn Today provides the most shared news headlines for the day .

There is also a LinkedIn Blog post specific for helping new graduates (or soon to be) find jobs. .

A LinkedIn member can choose to have their LinkedIn account and their Twitter account linked. Tweets can be automatically updated to their LinkedIn status.

At the bottom of their home page, a LinkedIn member can search for new members within a particular network. So if someone wants to see if any new graduates of their university are on LinkedIn, the member can click that button and LinkedIn will populate with all the new members of that network. This can be a great way to network with different people who have common backgrounds/interests.

Go Forth…and Network

I’ve recently been asked if I think LinkedIn is better than Facebook or better than Twitter. The quick answer is no. However, it is different and it fills a different need. In my (not so humble opinion), Facebook (for me – your opinion will vary) is that Facebook is more personal and where I connect with family, friends, and the odd acquaintance. Twitter is where I network with my #slpeeps.  All but three of the people I’m following are SLPs or SLPs related on twitter. LinkedIn is professional and where I look for possible job prospects, network in a very professional manner with other professionals, and discuss specific topics. I spend far more time on Twitter than I do on either LinkedIn or Facebook; but all three are important networking elements.

This concludes my blog on LinkedIn. I am absolutely positive LinkedIn does more than I’ve talked about here…after all, this was an introduction to LinkedIn, not a comprehensive review.  However, you will learn far more by going there…creating a membership…joining a few groups…and actually networking. Enjoy. I can be found in several of the Speech and Language groups or by searching on my name. I look forward to seeing you there.

Mary Huston is a speech-language pathologist who works in a school in North Dakota. You can find her on LinkedIn and also on Twitter as @mtMarySLP.

I have a LinkedIn account…now what?

This post is brought to you by the word: dossier [dos-ee-ey, daw-see-ey] /ˈdɒsiˌeɪ, ˈdɔsiˌeɪ/


a collection or file of documents on the same subject, especially a complete file containing detailed information about a person or topic.

Want to know more about using social media for professional information and collaboration? See the top right sidebar for links to the entire blog series —->


Hopefully everyone has read Mary Huston‘s earlier guest blog post (in my series on social media) introducing you to LinkedIn as a social media outlet for extending your PLN (Personal/Professional Learning Network). She’s agreed to come back and blog some more about LinkedIn and I couldn’t be happier because I learned so much from this post. And that’s not all, she has MORE to share with us at a later date. It looks like Mary’s going to be a semi regular guest blogger here!


You’ve taken that first step and actually created a LinkedIn account. Are you wondering what to do next? If you haven’t already, you will want to watch this tutorial of what LinkedIn is all about.

Building a Profile

The first thing to do now that you’ve joined is to create a profile. A profile enables people to find you and represents you on LinkedIn. The profile also allows you to control your identity online – not just on LinkedIn. For instance, have you searched your name online lately? If not, go try it now…I’ll wait.

What was the first item that came up when you searched for yourself? According to LinkedIn, the first search choice is typically a LinkedIn profile (for those individuals who have one). How much easier can it be to have a professional image online? For individuals looking for work or starting in private practice, a LinkedIn profile can be a great source of free advertising.

LinkedIn walks members through creating a profile. A 100% complete profile has a picture, a list of current and past positions, education, a summary paragraph, and recommendations from other professionals. Some of this information can be incorporated very easily by uploading a current resume. Each area on a resume: Experience, Education, etc. will have a headline in bold with the information under it. In addition, each section can have a recommendation which will be discussed shortly.

The profile can be customized with different sections (e.g., Presentations, Publications, Websites, Associations, etc.) and to be complete, a profile requires recommendations. A recommendation is a personal statement from individuals familiar with your ability. LinkedIn recommends at least three (3) recommendations to be complete and makes it very easy to request recommendations from people. Of course, more recommendations are always a good thing.

LinkedIn has a great profile tutorial that walks an individual through most of the profile creation and makes it fairly easy to create a professional profile in no time. In addition, it tracks how complete the profile is and provides a Percentage Complete so it’s easy to see how much more work needs to be done. When the profile is complete, it can be viewed, emailed, and saved as a PDF file.

Building Connections

Once your profile is complete it’s time to start building connections. Connecting can happen in a couple of ways. The easiest way is to look for individuals you know; perhaps co-workers, employers, or friends. There is a search function where if you think someone has a LinkedIn account, you can search for them. Type in their name in the “People” blank and hit enter. A list of individuals who may meet your search criteria is generated. Click on an individual’s name and you will see their profile. You will also see whether or not they are “connected” to you by anyone in your network.

Once you’ve found who you are looking for, you have several options.

  • If you are a paid member, you can send an “InMail” which is a direct email.
  • You can ask a member of your network who is also connected with that person to “introduce” you.
  • You can add the individual to your network – IF – you have their address. You will need to let LinkedIn know how you “know” that individual.

If you are “connected” to an individual a “How You’re Connected To ____ “ box comes up. This allows you to see how you are connected. LinkedIn also allows you to shop contacts by seeing who else viewed the same profile.

Who’s Looking at Me?

The home page is where your personal profile can be edited and you can view other elements of LinkedIn. You are able to see how often your profile has been viewed in the last 90 days and how many times your name has shown up in searches. If you click on the number of times your profile has been viewed, LinkedIn provides a list of people and a bit of their information. If they are in your network, you will see their names and or pictures and which group or connection they share with you. If they are out of your network, you will see a notification that “someone at ____” viewed your profile. If you have a paid account, LinkedIn will provide a list of everyone who has viewed your account. This is a fantastic way to see how effective your profile has been at generating professional interest.

The home page also shows Your LinkedIn Network. This is the number of connections you have that are linked directly to you as well as how many people are in your network (connections of connections). This area also provides the number of new people in your network. There is also a box of Jobs You May Be Interested In, which provides job listings. Finally, the home page also provides People You May Know, which are suggestions of different people with whom you may be interested in connecting. LinkedIn compiles your interests, groups, and profile to generate this list.

Now that your profile is complete and you’re able to connect with individuals it’s time to find groups and organizations to connect. Finding groups will be the subject of my next post. In the meantime, go create an awesome profile!

Mary Huston is a speech-language pathologist who works in a school in North Dakota. You can find her on LinkedIn and also on Twitter as @mtMarySLP.

Getting Connected With LinkedIn

Today’s post is brought to you by the word: vinculum [ving-kyuh-luhm] /ˈvɪŋkjʊləm/
n , pl –la

  1. a horizontal  line drawn above a group of mathematical terms, used as an alternative to parentheses in mathematical expressions, as in x+ y — z which is equivalent to x + ( y — z ).
  2. Anatomy

a. any bandlike structure, esp one uniting two or more parts

b. another name for ligament.

3. rare a unifying bond; tie

Want to know more about using social media for professional information and collaboration? See the top right sidebar for links to the entire blog series —->

Today I have another great guest blog post from Mary Huston.  I am signed up with LinkedIn, but as I said in my first post about using social media to develop a PLN, I don’t really use it; certainly not to it’s full potential.  Mary has been using Linked In for longer than me and with more purpose, so without further ado, I hand this blog over to Mary.


What exactly is LinkedIn? The short answer is LinkedIn is a business-oriented social networking site. Try to imagine Facebook with a business slant instead of purely social. Professional networking allows individuals to exchange knowledge and ideas in a variety of ways. You can check out a short video of LinkedIn here:

At a bare minimum, LinkedIn is a way to build a professional profile with your resume, job experiences, and interests. It’s also a way to keep in touch with colleagues, professors, and other experts in your field, even if they aren’t likely to connect with you via social networking sites. Because it’s a professional networking site, your LinkedIn profile may lead you to career opportunities and may also lead headhunters to offer you that dream position.

When I first joined LinkedIn, well over a year ago, I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to do. It looked like a place to post a resume, connect with a few people, but it didn’t really DO anything. Recently, I found out that there truly was a lot more to LinkedIn than I was giving it credit for. Not only was it place to post a resume, but it was a place to connect with other individuals, share information, and collaborate.

One way to collaborate and share information is to join groups. For instance, I belong to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association; Speech, Language and Hearing Professionals; and Technology for Speech and Language Pathologists groups. Within those groups, there are discussions, questions posted and answered, and surveys. One nice feature is the ability to have LinkedIn send a digest of posts to your email so you aren’t inundated with different posts, but you’re still up-to-date with the information.

One feature of LinkedIn that I like, although others may not, is the suggestions of other groups I may want to follow. LinkedIn takes my interests and my current groups and suggests other groups. I like this because I don’t have to search for groups; although, I do have the opportunity to search using keywords. Similarly, LinkedIn will suggest individuals I may know based on my connections (friends of friends). There are also jobs listings provided.

Everything on LinkedIn is linked to your profile and your connections. In order to complete your profile, it’s suggested that you have friends write recommendations for you. These recommendations show up in your profile. Recommendations are a great way of showing perspective employers and connections the information in your profile is accurate and really sell yourself, which after all, you want to do if you want that dream job.

LinkedIn has many settings which allow you to customize it to suit your needs. Depending on your account settings, you can send email to people on and off your contact list, request to follow people, and send your profile directly to connections and companies. There appear to be four account types ranging in price from Free (which is always good) and increasing in price to $99.95/month. The account type dictates how many emails you can send and how many results you get in a search. For me, the free account works just fine, but if I were truly searching for a position or building a professional network, I would explore investing in one of the others.

All in all, if you’re looking for the next best Facebook or My Space…LinkedIn probably isn’t it. However, if you’re looking for a professional site where you can connect with professionals and build your network, it’s a great place to visit.

In other posts, I plan to discuss more of the details of LinkedIn, such as designing your profile and finding groups you may be interested in joining.

Mary Huston is a speech-language pathologist who works in a school in North Dakota. You can find her on LinkedIn and also on Twitter as @mtMarySLP.

sojourn (SOH-jurn):

noun 1. a temporary stay: during his sojourn in Paris.
verb (used without object) 2. to stay for a time in a place; live temporarily: to sojourn on the Riviera for two months.

I am thrilled to have Mary Huston, Speech-Language Pathologist, as a guest blogger today!  She is the resident expert in Cycles for Phonology on Twitter and has been answering so many questions posed to her by other professionals that I invited her to blog about Cycles.  Happily for all of us, she accepted.  I thought I knew about Cycles and phonology until I met her and realized I don’t know nearly what I thought I did.  I hope that her post will enlighten you and help you with Cycles as much as it has helped me. ~Tanya


Recently I have been asked several questions about Barbara Hodson’s Cycles Program for highly unintelligible children. I’m not quite sure how I became known as the “phono” person, but I will confess to a love of phonology. I also have the benefit of having been trained by someone who has worked closely with Dr. Hodson and will share some of her information as well as Dr. Hodson’s information.

I think the easiest thing to do is to start at the beginning and explain Dr. Hodson’s Cycles program. Cycles was designed to be used with highly unintelligible children and not with children with mild/moderate articulation errors2.

Let’s start at the first of many questions.

What’s the difference between articulation and phonology?

The easiest way to remember the difference between articulation and phonology is articulation is a “handful of errors” where phonology is much broader. It always surprises me to hear clinicians report a “severe articulation disorder” in children. Yes, I suppose it’s possible – but it’s important to look at the types and breadth of the errors to decide if it’s truly articulation or if it’s a sound-system disorder (aka phonological disorder).

Articulation is typically a placement disorder or distortions. The student has formed errors on phoneme placement. Most common of these of course is the /s/ and /r/ errors we have all come to know and dread. It’s important to realize that these are not classes of sounds – but rather certain sounds.

Phonology is a rules disorder1. For whatever reason, the child has not learned the rules of how sounds are made and which sounds can go together. The child will often omit sounds or substitute whole classes of sounds. These errors have a significant impact on a child’s intelligibility.

 Where do I start?

The first thing to consider is what errors are present. Dr. Hodson has a wonderful handout that explains the Primary Targets for Cycles therapy (available on the SLP Resource Share). Essentially, start with the first error the child shows that has the most impact on intelligibility. Let me say that again, start with what impacts the ability for the child to be understood first. 2

Omissions are the primary cause for concern and need to be targeted first2. If the child omits syllables – start there. If the child omits initial consonants, but has syllables – start at initial consonants. If the child can produce CV words but not CVC – start with final consonants. If the child has all of those – but can’t produce an /s/ cluster – start there. (Oh, and just to stave off the argument – I mean marking both parts of a cluster, not that the /s/ is distorted)

How do I pick the words I use? Is it really okay to only use 5-6 words?

It’s important to choose the words carefully, particularly for the first couple of cycles2. Assimilation is typically a major problem for clients with severe sound-system disorders so for the first few cycles we want to avoid words with their error sound in them. For instance, if a child is fronting and substitutes a /t/ for /k/ don’t use CAT as a target word. Use a neutral word such as COW or CAR or KING 2,4. The reason for limiting the number of words is two-fold. It gives the client the opportunity to be successful and to practice the words correctly. It also gives the clinician a break because it can be tricky coming up with good words. Keep the child interested by changing the activity. Most important is the client’s success. Cycles therapy is all about the child’s success. In fact, the clinician is supposed to provide enough prompts to have the child be 100% successful at all times and reduce the number of prompts needed as the skills emerge.

How long do I work with each sound?

According to Dr. Hodson, each phoneme or consonant cluster within a pattern is targeted for 60 minutes2. This can be tricky in the school system. What I typically do is work on each sound for 1 week (possibly 2) and then move onto the next sound. When you finish with one cycle meaning you worked all the way through /s/ clusters, /k, g/, and /l, r/ (yes, even /l/ and /r/)2, you “cycle” back through the sounds. Usually about the 3rd time through (2nd for those really quick learners) I start to introduce the carrier phrase of “It’s a ____,” and eventually sentences. When the student has “cycled” through all the target phonemes at least once, Dr. Hodson recommends mixing target phonemes within a pattern so each phoneme is targeted for 2-hours or more2. For instance work on /k/ and /g/ in the same sessions.

When do I work on /f/?

You don’t. Well, actually that’s not true. You do work on /f/ as a secondary target but only after the /s/ clusters are in conversation2, 3. The reason for this is 1) /f/ doesn’t generalize to other fricatives – you can work on /f/ until the cows come home and all you’ll get is /f/, but if you work on /s/ clusters they will generalize to all fricatives; 2) there’s a nasty little coalescence/assimilation1, 2 which can occur with /f/. Many times, kids with sound system disorders that have worked on /f/ will produce /f/ for /s/ clusters and it’s hard to break. Do yourself a favor – save /f/ for later.

When do I work on voicing errors?

Voicing errors are worked on as secondary targets only after /s/ clusters are in conversation and most of the other targets have had success at the word level2, 3. Voicing errors are annoying – and we notice them, but they don’t impact intelligibility nearly as much as the primary targets2.

I think that’s enough for now although I have the feeling I’ll be back later.

Happy Cycling. I look forward to hearing success stories.

Mary Huston, MS, CCC-SLP


 1Gordon-Brannan, M., & Weiss, C. (2007). Clinical management of articulator and phonologic disorders – third edition. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. 

2Hodson, B. (2007). Evaluating & enhancing children’s phonological systems: Research & theory to practice. Greenville, SC: Thinking Publications.

 3Hodson, B. (2010). Potential optimal primary target patterns. Flowchart Handout provided via email.  (NOTE: This flowchart is available in the SLPeeps Resource Share folder in Google Docs under Artic/Phono subfolder).

 4Liddiard Buteau, C., & Hodson, B. (1989). Phonological remediation targets. Austin, TX: Pro-Ed.