Speech and Language Therapy

Speech and language therapy programs at Imagine Academy are designed with a central goal: functional communication in all academic and social environments. Individual and group pull-out and push-in sessions are conducted to establish new skills and maximize generalization in the classroom and the community. Classroom staff are consistently trained on how to target each student’s communication goals across the school day. From verbal speech and high and low tech voice output devices to picture exchange communication systems, topic boards and social stories, SLPs at Imagine Academy are trained to use an arsenal of tools to help students become the most effective communicators they can be.

Imagine Academy offers a daily speech-motor production clinic, which targets specific sounds and word combinations to improve a student’s overall speech intelligibility. Students are assessed at regular intervals throughout the school year to determine eligibility for participation and progress. In addition to focused training each morning, instructor staff accompany students to the clinic and are trained by the SLPs to deliver motor speech training across the school day.

Our Speech and Language therapists are trained in the following:

  • NLA/ Gestalt Language Processing
  • Sensorimotor Feeding
  • Social Thinking
  • PECS
  • AAC programming/ implementation
  • DIR/ Floortime
More Info

Meet the Faculty

Musia Grossman
Speech and Language Therapist


Marie Albanese
Speech and Language Therapist


Neeti Angal
Speech and Language Therapist


Raquel Savdie
Assistant Principal and Director of Speech & Language Pathology


Vera Antebi
Speech-Language Pathologist


Hear From Our Parents

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Our therapists are trained in NLA (Natural Language Acquisition)!

Does your child or a child you work with echo or script to communicate? Do they repeat questions, books or movies, but have a hard time producing spontaneous utterances? Have you tried different therapies and techniques but don't see improvement?

Natural Language Acquisition was developed for gestalt language processors (GLP) that use delayed echolalia to communicate, supported by the clinical research of Marge Blanc and colleagues (M. Blanc, 2012). Gestalt language processors process language in chunks and focus more on intonation than on words. A GLP may store a chunk of language for later use using the exact intonation and language the original speaker used. Most gestalts (chunks of language or scripts) are also tied to an emotional experience/memory for GLPs. Most typically developing kids (analytic language processors) will say "dog" and then eventually "big dog" and then expand from there ("mama big dog"). Gestalt language processors may hear a parent say, "Wow, that's a big dog!" and that's what they say every time they see a dog (or any other animal, or walk by the park...). They have a hard time breaking the "chunk" (or gestalt) apart in the beginning stage of gestalt language development.

Founded on the pioneering work of Ann Peters (A. Peters, 1983), and Barry Prizant and colleagues (B. Prizant, 1983), Natural Language Acquisition is the framework used to guide us in helping a child move from echolalia to self-generated (original, flexible) language. NLA evolved as a way to quantify and detail the process of gestalt language development and echolalia: all the way from Stage 1 (use of language gestalts) to Stage 6 (use of complex grammar). NLA describes the logical, natural, developmental process of gestalt language development, and provides a road-map for supporting children in natural, conversational, developmentally-appropriate ways.