Park Slope Communication & Learning Center
Expert help in Speech Therapy, Language Therapy Reading Intervention & Enrichment
Helping Children & Adults Since 1984 718.768.3526 info@parkslopecc.com

Speech Therapy, Language Therapy, Reading Intervention & Enrichment

Laura Reisler, Speech-Language Pathologist, and director of the Park Slope Communication & Learning Center, with over 30 years experience treating speech, language and reading issues, talks about what to expect when you contact us. She also talks about our highly successful Phonic Engine Reading Method in the reading section of our website.

"Just four months ago, my three-year-old son couldn’t say his own name, or clearly express his wishes to anyone but his father and me. His speech was significantly delayed, inhibiting his ability to play and interact with his peers. The counselor at his school recommended we reach out to Laura. Even during our brief introductory phone call, I could sense Laura’s care and experience. She fit our son in for an evaluation immediately. It’s accurate to say he trusted her on sight. He walked into her office with no hesitation and stayed with her happily. Laura is sensitive and direct- a crucial combination when it comes to working with children. Now our son is speaking distinctly in complete sentences, thriving in school, and saying his full name- he has four! He requests to go to “Laura’s house” almost every day. A subject once dominated by fear and frustration for him is now a source of pride and excitement. To say the least, I’m grateful for the work Laura has done with him." Laurie S.

W. Solesky discusses her daughter's reading. "Since she's been coming here, she wants to read. It's a very comforting place to come."

For more than 30 years we have provided expert help to children and adults, with Speech Therapy, Language Therapy, Reading Intervention & Reading Enrichment in a warm, caring environment. And in that time, we have amassed extensive experience and helped countless children and adults overcome virtually every conceivable communication issue. And in so doing, have completely turned around the lives of many children, some who have come to us with no language at all, and others who have fallen years behind in reading. A large perecntage of our clients -- possibly most -- have been referred to us by pediatricians, schools, and hospitals, and we receive referrals not only from Brooklyn, but from more distant areas as well. Pediatricians have even come to refer to us for reading issues. If you are experiencing a problem, or you suspect your child may be, please feel free to give us a call, or drop us an email. If your concern is with your child, please understand that the earier an issue is addressed, the easier and less time consuming it will be to treat. And trust your own judgement, for you are the best judge. We have had many experiences where a family friend or even a doctor had suggested a wait and see approach. And that has resulted in a longer and more difficult treatment. So please feel free to reach out to us, or to any speech pathologist. Most will be happy to take the time to answer your questions and address your concerns. We certainly are. And in some cases, will tell you that you can wait. But please let yourself hear that from a speech & language professional. Please call 718.768.3526 ext. 1 if you'd like to talk, or to make an appointment. Ask for Laura. Or, use our contact form, or email us at info@parkslopecc.com.

Speech Therapy We work with you or your child to correct all issues which impede clear speech production. Some of these issues include articulation disorders (mispronouncing speech sounds, frequently l, m, th, r and s), oral motor problems, orofacial myofunctional disorders (tongue thrust), childhood apraxia of speech, dysarthria, voice disorders, fluency disorders (such as stuttering and cluttering), accent reduction, public speaking, and speech sound disorders, such as articulation and phonological processes.
Language Therapy We help you or your child achieve age appropriate understanding and expression of language, and enhance all areas of communication. We have turned around the lives of many infants and toddlers who have come to us with no language at all, and leave here speaking in complete and complex sentences, thriving in school, and highly verbal, and have helped many children on the spectrum. We treat issues such as language delays, language disorders in children and adults (expressive, receptive and pragmatic), word finding problems, autism spectrum disorders and auditory and language processing disorders in children, to name a few.
Reading Intervention We have had a significant impact helping numerous students make dramatic gains in all areas of literacy, including gains of several years over the course of several months. As speech-language pathologists, we understand the types of underlying language, phonological and auditory processing, and attention deficits that contribute to difficulties in written communication, and directly address those issues. The unique software we have developed and use -- also available for home use -- focuses students on the connections between all aspects of written communication. We help students with dyslexia, phonological disorders, and auditory processing disorders, and have helped many students improve dramatically in phonics, reading comprehension, fluency, spelling, and vocabulary.
Reading Enrichment We go well beyond just helping kids meet or exceed grade level. We provide rich activities, from in-depth word study to creative story writing. Using our software, kids learn while having fun exploring the relationships between letters, sounds and words, and then reading articles and stories containing those letters, sounds and words about anything of interest to them, ranging from dinosaurs, to outer space, to animals to dolls and sports; and create animated talking stories, which parents can play back at home. We have pioneered highly successful techniques that have achieved remarkable results, helping children attain truly substantial gains where others had not been able to help. Based upon the high degree of success all our reading clientele (many with Speech or Language deficits) have achieved with our Phonic Engine® Method, combined with the fact that children with speech or language issues are at risk for reading problems, we utilize this methodology, where appropriate — and provide software and training for home use — with all children who attend our center. In addition, pre-school children and their parents receive pre-literacy counseling.

Circular arrow vector with the words communication continuumm, indicating the interdependency of speech, language, and literacy

We provide expert help, evaluation and consultation in every area of the Communication Continuum: Speech, Language and Literacy: Reading Intervention and Reading Enrichment for all ages, Pre-K through adult. Speech Therapy and Language Therapy for all ages (0 to adult), all areas. We treat developmental speech and language disorders, expressive and receptive language disorders, muscle coordination issues, oral motor problems, articulation, stuttering, as well as less common issues. We provide help with phonics, phonemic awareness, reading comprehension, reading fluency, vocabulary, and the underlying speech and language issues that may be contributing to problems encountered with reading, spelling, and writing. We utilize our in-house reading software, which we provide and strongly recommend for home use. Most of the people we help have been referred to us by their friends, doctors, or teachers. Please look around our website, and see what we may be able to offer you.

What exactly is a "Communication Continuum?" Communication starts with crying, smiling, laughing and vocal inflection. And being responded to. When we do this, we are communicating. Next comes babbling, and during the latter part of this phase, sounds that are not part of our native language begin to drop away, and we enter a phase where we speak sounds in our native tongue only (or primarily) — a phase which we call the "jargon phase," and which is a most interesting one.

It's clearly an attempt to communicate. We are now forming sounds one by one in single and multi-syllabic "words." We speak "true" words interspersed with nonsense words.

And now, there's even more inflection, which conveys emotional content, and the voice is directed towards a listener who can respond.

At this point, we have taken a great leap in acquiring communication skills; eventually, nonsense words fall away, and we are "speaking." And, as we are also visual creatures, we see expression in visual forms, such as signs, letters, and books As we grow, this expands, as does our thinking process and imagination. And this, then, influences our spoken language. Words we speak, hear, and understand.

Spoken language influences, and can have an effect upon, written language; and written language influences, and can have an effect upon, spoken language. This is the communication continuum.

We have created novel methodologies, collectively referred to as the Phonic Engine® Reading Method, which tie together all the components of the Communication Continuum: speech, language, and reading, and have unique experience leveraging each to help the other. Typically, this takes the form of helping children with any and all difficulties which interfere with their ability to process information, read, and learn.

But, this unique and totally original work, which completely conforms to the needs of the individual, was developed within an environment in which original thinking thrives, and is totally client-centric. Our ability to "think outside the box" (when appropriate), and clearly leverage the connections between speech, language, and reading to serve our clientele, combined with our client-centered and empathetic environment, provides the clients of Park Slope Communication & Learning Center with a significant advantage along the entire communication continuum of speech, language, and reading, and helps position them for academic success.

Is my child's language where it should be?

It is not unusual for us to receive calls from concerned parents months or even years after it would have been advisable. At times, the parents may have been told by friends or even well intentioned pediatricians not to worry. We suggest that you are the best judge. The info-graphics below depict norms for speech and language development. And, although they are rules of thumb, they are accurate, especially as your child approaches 4, when teachers, friends, and even employees in a store should understand your child all of the time.
Infographic depicting typical speech intelligibility by age. At 1 year, child should be understood by strangers 25% of the time, by 2, 50%, by 3, 75%, and by 4, 100%.
In earlier years, such as at 1 or 2, there is more variation, but even at those ages, if your child seems to be behind, you should give a speech-language pathologist a call to discuss. Most speech-language pathologists will be happy to talk with you. We certainly are. Many delays in the earlier years will not require treatment or even a formal evaluation. But every delay should require a conversation, as certain issues become much harder to correct at an older age.
Infographic depicting a rough guide to language development, with the following bullet points: 1. Expect first words between 12 and 18 months with a ?spurt? of language development likely before 2. 2. Grammar should be correct mist of the time by 4 years of age. 3. Anticipate hearing 4 to 5 word sentences by 4 years of age. 4. ?Other people? will understand almost everything your child says by the time he or she is 4.