Home Exercise Programs and Speech Therapy
A common question for parents who are starting speech therapy with their child is “What can I do to help my child be successful?”. The goal for speech therapy is to help your child get to a point where they don’t need us anymore, and a major part of helping your child ‘graduate’ from speech therapy is completing a Home Exercise Program, or HEP. Your speech therapist will likely go over the HEP with you after each session. By targeting your child’s goals across multiple settings via a HEP, your child can learn to generalize their speech goals across settings and environments.
HEPs for each diagnosis will look a little different. For a child who has difficulty with their speech sounds (articulation), a speech therapist might have parents over-emphasize or use lots of words with the targeted sound(s). For a child who has difficulty with language, a speech therapist might have parents model short phrases and sentences for a week before advancing to the next level. Children with other speech difficulties will have customized HEPs based on their goals.
The following website goes into greater detail for reasons why speech-language pathologists provide HEPs for families.