Children's Daycare, Downtown Montreal: Eleanor
Prior to starting at the daycare to which I had been assigned, I wasn’t all that nervous about my first ever practicum, because I had had a lot of experience with children in the past. However, that confidence soon changed when we were led to a class of very active two and three year-olds. I have to admit that it was a little daunting being with children so young (and small!), but after the first few minutes my worries disappeared and I was soon lost in a world of puzzles and toys.
Each week we were given specific tasks involving investigation of different aspects of normally developing children’s speech and language. These ranged from eliciting phonology and morphology to looking at overall behavior and types of play.
I learned a lot in the six weeks I was there and was even invited to go for an interview as a substitute teacher at the end! Most importantly, I was able to see how the theory we learned in class applied in the ‘real world’. Being able to observe typical speech and language development will certainly provide me with a useful baseline in the future when dealing with speech/language impaired children as an SLP.
Hearing Screenings, East and North-West Montreal: Tamara
I was greeted back to school this winter semester with a placement doing hearing screenings at an elementary school. Our job was to screen the hearing of the 80 kindergarten children who went there. This seemed like a daunting task, to me as a relatively new SLP student, yet it proved to be a wonderful first-hand experience. It really helped re-enforce all that I had learned last semester in my Introduction to Audiology class. Plus it boosted my confidence by showing me that I do know what I'm doing. I felt empowered, leaving at the end of the day. It was also nice when the SLP mentioned that the schools really appreciate us being there. It was great knowing that not only was I getting something useful out of the experience, but the kids I screened were also getting some very useful information!