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Donated Devices Help CSD Students With Speech Delays

When it comes to learning new information, speech-language pathologists know one simple thing can make a world of difference to the human brain: listening.

That’s why many pathologists, reading teachers and special-education aides in Canyons District use special tools to help students hear themselves speak. One popular tool is a phone-like device that students hold up to their ears. Students speak into one end of the device, and the sound is directly transmitted through the other end of the device right into their ears.

“There is that immediate feedback that helps all of us remember information,” says Maria Hawley, Canyons’ speech, language and hearing services coordinator.

The District recently received a donation of more than 50 hand-made devices that are based on a product called the “WhisperPhone,” which allows students to hear themselves speaking. The hand-made devices are made with light and easy-to-clean PVC tubing and elbow joints that look very similar to a toy phone when they are assembled.

“It’s a simple idea and the kids love them,” says Karen Cushing, a teacher specialist who has used the phones in her classroom to teach math.

Although some teachers, pathologists and specialists already use devices like the WhisperPhone, this is the first time the District has received such a substantial donation of the devices. The phones will be divided among the District’s 53 speech-language pathologists to work with students on auditory processing and speech delays, such as stuttering.

Each school in the District has at least one speech-language pathologist available to work with students with speech difficulties. Every District pathologist is board-certified, has at least a master’s degree in communication disorders and works with about 50 students.

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Lucie Chamberlain

Alta View Elementary

If a movie about super teachers were ever made, Lucie Chamberlain would be a prime candidate for a leading role. Fortunately for her kindergarten students at Alta View Elementary, she already thrives in a supporting role for them. Parents thank her for being a “super teacher.” She is also described as an “amazing colleague.” Whether students need help in the classroom or from home while sick, Lucie goes above and beyond to help them learn, overcome fears, and feel important and cared for. Lucie is the reason a number of kids went from hating school to loving it, according to parents. The way she exudes patience, sweetness, positive energy, and love for her students with special needs melts is appreciated and admired. One parent noted: “Both my kids wish she could be their teacher forever.” Another added:  “She treats every student like their learning and their feelings are her priority.” Super teacher, indeed!

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