It’s amazing to watch Johnny quickly complete messages or respond to questions on his speech generating device called an ECO2.
Using a set of multiple meaning picture icons in systematic combinations Johnny is able to independently communicate using a large vocabulary without having to spell out individual words or have to navigate through a large set of pictures on multiple pages. Johnny loves to communicate and his cheerful and engaging manner makes him a great communication partner. He is also a strong self-advocate and has no problem expressing his needs and desires. Lately he has been advocating for a newer more portable and powerful Minspeak device.
Johnny said that it took him about 6 months to learn the rules and the basics of the Minspeak system when he first started using a speech device in early Elementary school. Learning the Minspeak system is not easy and behind every great Minspeak user there is usually a great support team which includes a speech language pathologist (SLP) who specializes in Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC). Johnny credits a few SLP’s for helping and supporting his communication development over the years. He mentioned Karen Neill, Yvonne Green and Pam Davis as the SLPs who have been instrumental in helping him over the past 10 years. And now, Johnny is sharing his Minspeak skills at UBC where he did a tremendous job with his presentation to a class of Faculty of Education students. He demonstrated his ease with the devices he used, from his handheld tools to his dedicated communication device. He used the projection system to show the class how he created his messages, and initiated the dialogued that allowed the university students to learn how well he truly manages his AAC world.
Johnny is graduating this June and he said he will miss SET-BC and that he really appreciated the support, equipment loan and service that he has received. Johnny has applied to the Communication Aids for Young Adults program so that his SET-BC loaned device will follow him and he will continue to get the support he needs to keep his communication system up to date.
We wish him the very best on his upcoming graduation!