The journey of learning to communicate or regaining communication is not traveled alone. Children and adults struggling with communication are supported along the way by dedicated family, friends, and mentors. Successful therapeutic intervention on this journey includes providing tools and training not only for the communicator, but for the family and partners by his side. Seattle AAC is dedicated to guiding families and mentors on this journey and promoting successful and independent communication for everyone.
Tanna Neufeld is a licensed, ASHA certified speech-language pathologist with over 10 years in the field working with individuals with complex communication challenges. She received a Master of Science degree in Speech-Language Pathology from Nova Southeastern University in Fort. Lauderdale, Florida and continues to build a unique understanding of augmentative communication and assistive technology through dedicated continuing education and clinical experience. Tanna has presented on AAC and other communication topics at professional agencies and nationwide conferences, and has integrated parent coaching and collaboration with professionals throughout her career. Her approach to each individual is one that emphasizes family and partner support and involvement while recognizing the unique message and motivations of each communicator. Tanna maintains a connection to AAC professionals and organizations through membership in WSLHA (Washington Speech-Language Hearing Association), ASHA SIG 12, Augmentative and Alternative Communication, ATIA (Assistive Technology Industry Association), NWACS (Northwest Augmentative Communication Society) and ISAAC/USSAAC (International and US Societies for Augmentative and Alternative Communication).
AAC for All in Need
In addition to expertise in the field of augmentative communication, Tanna has a solid foundation of knowledge and clinical experience in early childhood development and early intervention. Tanna is Hanen certified in It Takes Two to Talk and uses these evidence-based strategies in her daily language stimulation and AAC intervention practices. Through play-based and structured learning opportunities, Tanna works with children and families to help build communication competence and confidence in a nurturing and fun environment. Families are encouraged to follow their child's lead and to support new learning experiences by meeting each child where he is and using models, creativity, and positive reinforcement to move him to the next step. Tanna believes that parents are the experts of their own children and in that, their best teachers. With this lens, therapy begins by also meeting parents where they are and helping them recognize their wisdom and strength to foster new skills in their amazing children.
Tanna has worked privately in school, home, and community settings with school aged children as they and their families navigate the demands of academic learning and social interaction. She has collaborated with classroom therapy teams and educators to provide continuity of care for schools aged kids as they learn to use communication systems in a variety of learning environments. Tanna has established augmentative communication systems for children who have reached school age without a reliable means of communication and has assisted families in the challenges that may accompany introducing this new tool.
Tanna has worked in in the hospital and private practice settings supporting adults born with complex communication needs as they continue to develop variety, complexity, creativity, and independence in their established communication systems. She has also supported many individuals through the transition from childhood through adolescence and into adulthood as social and communicative needs continue to evolve. It is never too late to introduce an AAC system to a communicator in need and Tanna is dedicated to helping families discover and implement these essential tools, no matter how far along in life.
Tanna has made collaboration a priority in her practice and continues to strive to share her passion, knowledge and experience in AAC with professionals in need of support. AAC can often be a daunting task for a skilled and experienced professional and even more so for those to which it is novel. Whether through teaming, consultations, or continuing education workshops, Tanna is dedicated to demystifying AAC and helping all who support children and adults with complex communication needs learn to utilize this powerful tool in a manageable way that gets results!
Tanna is dedicated to advocacy for AAC users and believes that every individual with complex communication needs is provided the best opportunities for communicative independence when their community at large is educated and involved. If your institution provides services to complex communicators, consider how AAC consultation services can help you better serve these individuals and facilitate more appropriate access to your programming. Institutions that Tanna has previously supported include:
Early intervention programs
Home Health Agencies
ABA Therapy Programs
Organizations supporting individuals with complex communication needs and concurrent sensory disabilities, such as visual impairment