Early Interventionists, Developmental Interventionists, Developmental Therapists, EI Specialists, Whatever You’re Called in Your State… You Matter!


Today I received this email from an early interventionist who felt left out of my recommendations to parents, so I need to clarify my position a bit:

I absolutely love the positive impact you are making on families around the country. I heard of you from an SLP who was consulting with me on a child. Since then I have been sharing your website, materials and ideas with families and other professionals. I am profoundly thankful for your insight and knowledge!

As I read the article about parent coaching and the importance of teaching parents how to implement strategies, I was a bit saddened by the idea that only an SLP or “skilled therapist” can teach strategies to parents that produce positive outcomes. I’m an Infant Toddler Developmental Specialist and an exceptional education teacher. I have not only spent years learning about delays and disorders that affect children under three, but I have also spent countless hours in the homes, sharing strategies and coaching families. I have learned so much from the speech, occupational and physical therapists on my teams and I use this knowledge to support families.
In my state, families are more likely to receive services from an early interventionist, than an SLP. We in EI work just as hard to provide for families as do other professionals. We also advocate fiercely for our clients when we know other services like speech are needed.

Please keep us in mind when you mention professionals who support families in early intervention. Honestly, EVERY family on my caseload will hear about teachmetotalk.com and the amazing Miss Laura! I could not do what I do without your influence. Thank you so much!


In my world, YOU are a “skilled therapist” and I never, ever meant to leave you or your colleagues out!! I believe in Developmental Specialists (EI specialists or whatever you’re called in your state!) so much that I used to host my podcast with a Developmental Therapist from 2008 to 2013 and I don’t think I’ve ever made that distinction or downplayed that important role in EI services in any way. I hate that you interpreted it that way, but I’m glad you let me know so I can make sure it’s not misrepresented. Actually, in most states where I speak, conference attendees are split half and half between SLPs and EI therapists – they’re just called different things in different places and in my mind, I am not separating those positions and using the all inclusive term “therapist.” I GLADLY welcome all EI providers and hope that everyone feels valued and respected!! Thanks for letting me know how you read that, but again, it was never, ever, ever intended to be that way!!

I hope this post clears up this misunderstanding! Actually, what I really hope is that no one else misunderstood : ) Laura

Posted in


Leave a Comment

Sign Up for your Free eBook

Something went wrong. Please check your entries and try again.

Subscribe to the Podcast in iTunes

Browse Products

Featured Product

Recent Posts

Teach Me To Talk Testimonials

Happy Therapists, Teachers, Parents & Children

"I just received Teach Me to Play With You, and it is ALREADY WORKING! WOW!

Girl…my son is 3 years old, and he NEVER asks for something using words. We were playing “Get Your Belly” (from Teach Me to Play WITH You), and after several times, he laughed and screamed "BEWIEEE!!!"  It was a hoot. And I can't believe he said it! I have played with him like this before, but this time I took your advice and acted CRAZY!! I will act like a total lunatic if it will get him to talk to me!  Now I can give him "the look" from across the room, and he will say it. That manual is so amazingly practical, and it is a GODSEND right now! Thank you SO MUCH!”

"I wanted to send you a quick email to say thank you. I started watching your videos/podcasts about 4 months ago. My son has gone from losing words he previously used, only having about 7 words at his 2 year check up in August (assessed at a blended 10 month language level) -- to now having so many words, increased social engagement, following commands, spontaneously requesting things, and naming letters & numbers (not in order) as well as colors. We had our monthly meeting with our SLP through the state infants & toddlers program and it felt like we were just bragging the whole time, but I knew in the back of my head it was because I have been using strategies you taught me.

We still have so much work to do with our sweet boy, but I know in my heart he would not have succeeded without the education you provided. I will continue to read your emails & watch videos as we go along this journey and face challenges, but credit is due to you, Laura.

Thank you so much, endlessly."


"I just want to tell how fortunate I feel to have found your website and you!! I became a special instructor in EI almost a year ago and I started with hardly any applicable training. I felt so lost and confused as how to help the kids I work with learn how to use words and play. Honestly, I didn't even understand the importance of play, although I always played with my kids. But, once I started to watch your podcasts and get some of your manuals I felt a weight had been lifted off my shoulders and that I could finally teach these kids and their families something of value from a real therapist and based on research!. Thank you so much for seeing the need to help other EI service providers and providing a forum to share your knowledge and years of valuable experience. I'm sure you get a lot of these emails every week if not every day, but I wanted to make I could add to those notes of gratitude!! THANK YOU again!!"


"Just wanted to say a HUGE thank you for these emails and your books, I have them all and they have seriously saved and improved my sessions with my kiddos. Huge thank you."


"I was very frustrated with how speech therapy was going for my child. I would take him and drop him off and not hear much of anything from his therapist and teachers other than, "He had a good (or a bad!) day." Your materials were invaluable for us because I learned how to work with him on his speech. I learned how to teach him to talk and play. I learned how to pay attention to his cues and work with him to teach him to communicate. Without it, I have no doubt he still wouldn’t talk."


"Hi! I just wanted to say (from an SLT perspective) how incredibly useful I am finding absolutely all of your articles, blogs and resources - I only discovered your site last month and have just received all your books which I feel I am learning more than on my entire university training course!! But also the way in which you give specific, realistic, fun, encouraging ideas for working with parents is really just fantastic, I only wish I have your site sooner! Thanks so much from the UK! Kind regards."


"I just wanted to reach out to say thank you for making things a little easier to manage for me this year. I made the transition from school SLP to private therapist about a year ago. While the change was welcome, it was a lot, and I was just getting my footing in the clinic when I began teletherapy full time. Your website has been a huge lifeline in helping me work with late talkers and coach their parents in an accessible but effective way, even remotely. I look forward to getting your emails each week. I am floored by the amount of valuable, free information that your website provides, and I’m looking forward to investing in your workbooks soon. A sincere thank you for all you do!"


"You are an inspiration! I am truly grateful for the way you put into words and writing how to do what we do as SLPs. At this time in my 13 years of practicing, I find your encouragement keeps me going. As a single mom, I find it a stretch to buy materials these days and I am so thankful for the freebies you so generously share that help me teach my families. I don’t have much time to put together lists or quick references for parents!! Much gratitude!!"