Nurturing Narratives: Story-Based Language Intervention for Children With Complicated Language Problems paperback book cover
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Nurturing Narratives: Story-Based Language Intervention for Children With Complicated Language Problems

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Publication Date:
March 1, 2011
Print Length:
162 pages

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Research shows that if those on the spectrum know how to converse with others, they are more likely to be employed, live independently, and have friends.

As such, children with complex learning problems and autism spectrum disorder need to learn important language and conversational skills. These children are often in situations that may not be meaningful to them and hence are too complex for learning to occur. Due to the importance of understanding and telling stories for all children, Nurturing Narratives: Story-Based Language Intervention for Children With Complicated Language Problems, Including Autism and Other Developmental Disabilities was developed as a story-based language intervention for children. The model emphasizes comprehension, tailors language to the child's developmental level and stresses social engagement. The acquisition of language and literacy skills is embedded in a variety of story-related activities.

Do you know somebody who has autism spectrum disorder struggles with conversation? This evidence-based practice can help.


If you are an educator or an SLP working with children in preschool or primary grades, this is definitely a book you will want to read. Speaking from decades of clinical experience, the authors present a model of the knowledge and processes that underlie early narratives, and suggest ways to facilitate children's development of these capacities. The book is written clearly and provides an accessible account of the cognitive-language connections inherent in narrative. The thoughtful reader will end up with the tools needed to individualize narrative intervention. --Judith Johnston, MA, PhD, professor emerita, University of British Columbia School of Audiology and Speech Sciences

Sharing our personal stories and understanding the life story of others is one of the connections at the heart of human relationships. NURTURING NARRATIVES provides clearly articulated strategies to help nurture the ability of children with language delay to express themselves and to share in the joy of listening to understand others' stories. The tools in this book are important and provocative, encouraging us to engage in a human relationship as part of teaching this thinking and language-based process. --Michelle Garcia Winner, speech-language pathologist, MA-CCC, founder of Social Thinking, San Jose, CA

Narrative skills are often overlooked in intervention programs but are critical for success with school, friendships, and independent living. NURTURING NARRATIVES addresses this gap, providing a straightforward action plan for teaching narrative language skills and the prerequisite skills needed to acquire these skills. The model presented in this book can work with various pedagogical approaches and is an essential tool for teachers, SLPs, behavior and developmental therapists, and parents. Everyone with whom I have shared this book has been impressed with the step-by-step lessons and wants to have this book on their shelves as soon as possible. --Christina Whalen, PhD, BCBA-D, licensed psychologist, co-founder, chief science officer, TeachTown Inc.

About the Author

Christine Durbin, M.A., CCC-SLP is currently a Senior Speech-Language Pathologist at Kalmanowitz Child Development Center at California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco. Christine has practiced as a pediatric speech-language pathologist for the past 30 years. She has long been interested in the concept of treating the total child and has worked in interdisciplinary settings all of her career. She has worked extensively in early intervention and with children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Christine received her Master s degree in Communication Disorders from the University of Missouri Columbia in 1979. She currently lives in Sausalito, CA where she enjoys hiking and painting, and dancing.
Lauren Franke, Psy.D., CCC-SP, is a speech language pathologist and a clinical psychologist. She received her doctorate from Pepperdine University in 1991. She has had more than 30 years experience as a practitioner, educator, consultant and researcher. Her research and practice have focused on story-based language intervention to help students with complicated language needs develop language, social communication, play and literacy skills. Lauren has developed a story-based intervention framework, Coaching Comprehension-Creating Conversation (CCCC), over the past 10 years working with parents, therapists, classroom teachers and administrators. This framework reflects her commitment to developing and implementing functional and meaningful intervention that fits the student and is motivating and engaging. She has developed interactive story-based software for computer-assisted instruction and she continues to consult in this area. Lauren speaks regularly on topics related to story-based language intervention, assessment, social skills, and supporting students with ASD in accessing the curriculum.

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