Laura Prestia is a certified and licensed Speech-Language Pathologist working in pediatrics, focusing on children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. She has worked in the areas of speech and language which include receptive and expressive skills, pragmatics, articulation, oral-sensory-motor skills, feeding skills, and play. She has experience with Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) systems such as PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System), static boards, voice output buttons, and sign language, as well as both low- and high-tech devices, including iPad communication apps. She is trained in a variety of therapeutic techniques including oral-motor therapy, feeding therapy, apraxia, AAC, and PROMPT (Prompts For Restructuring Oral Muscular Phonetic Targets).
Laura also has extensive training in behavioral techniques, such as shaping, fading, and chaining, and uses reinforcement systems to promote appropriate and/or alternative behaviours while teaching skills. Working closely with behaviour analysts has fostered her understanding of the necessity to break skills down into hierarchical parts while using faded cues to promote efficient learning. This knowledge has made a significant impact in the way she targets speech and language goals.
Laura has shared her expertise on using AAC at various workshops, including RESNA (Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America), as well as colleges such as Pace University and NYU. Additionally, she has presented findings in oral-motor research at annual conventions held by YAI (Young Adult Institute) and ABAI (Association for Behavioral Analysis International).
Over the years, Laura has created a plethora of activities…….visuals, schedules, adapted books, modified games, and so on and so on. With each brainstorm of an idea came an avalanche of more ideas. And so came the beginnings of Language With Laura, a public outlet for her to share her most favorite and innovative creations, and to help make learning language fun!