Frequently Asked Questions
Speech Therapy Questions
What is Speech and Language Therapy?
Communication skills are related to the way we listen and understand, the way we use speech and language to send a message and the way we make and maintain friendships with other children. Some children can find communication challenging and Mable Speech and Language Therapists can help. We provide assessment and therapy to children with communication needs. We also offer expert advice to our teaching staff to make sure they are supporting your child across all areas of the curriculum.
How do I know if my child needs Speech Therapy?
As a parent, you know when to find some extra help for your child. You may have concerns about their speech clarity, their ability to learn new words at the same rate as other children or their social interaction skills. Whatever your concerns, there is no need to be worried about getting in touch. You can speak with a qualified Speech and Language Therapist straight away. They will advise you on whether your child meets the requirements for an initial consultation and we can take it from there.
How will I contact the Mable therapist?
Once you have logged in you will be kept up to date with information about your child’s therapy and progress. Therapists will provide you with activities for you and your child to complete together between sessions. You can always send a message to your child’s therapist directly through Mable. They will reply to you as soon as possible, usually within 48 hours.
Is Mable Therapy suitable for all children?
Mable therapists are able to provide intervention for a number of clients. For example, Developmental Language Disorder (DLD), Social Communication Needs, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Hearing Impairment, Communication Difficulties associated with Mental Health, Speech Sound delay and Disorder and Literacy difficulties. If you are not sure, the best thing to do is call and speak to one of our therapists. Unfortunately, we are unable to deliver direct intervention with children who have a profound visual impairment. We are not able to support pupils with Profound and Multiple Learning Needs.
Is Mable Therapy suitable for older children and teenagers?
Yes, within our network we have experienced therapists working with all age groups. Specialist skills are necessary to engage and support this age group which is why we only hire experienced therapists who have an excellent understanding of teenagers and the secondary curriculum.
Is Mable suitable for children under the age of four?
We have used Mable Therapy with children under four in the past. For example, we do work with some children aged 3 years but we would need to consider their cognitive level and attention level before deciding whether this is appropriate for them or not. Each case would be approached individually.
What if the therapists say they are too young but I just want some advice?
We recommend you book a consultation session with a speech and language therapist to discuss your child’s needs further and get some advice. However, we cannot guarantee they will be suitable for therapy with Mable if they are under 4.
What is the assessment process?
Your speech and language therapist will ask you to fill out a referral form. This is a questionnaire which helps the therapist to learn more about your child’s needs. After that, they may take a case history from your child’s school/nursery setting in order to get a holistic view of their needs.
Does my child’s school have to know we are accessing speech and language therapy?
You are in control, the therapist will only speak to your child’s school setting with your express permission. This is to learn more about your child’s behaviour in different situations. They are likely to question your child’s presentation in different lessons and ask for teacher observations on their play levels and levels of language in order to inform their assessment and intervention.
Can the reports be used for EHCP evidence?
Yes, the Mable Speech and Language screener investigates all areas of speech and language development. Specialist subsets can be administered for children and young people with specific needs and the results of these can be reported for use in EHCP assessment.
Are the assessments standardised?
Mable online assessments are Dynamic. Dynamic assessment (DA) is a method of conducting a language assessment which seeks to identify the skills that an individual child possesses as well as their learning potential. The dynamic assessment procedure emphasises the learning process and accounts for the amount of support and structure of the therapist.
How long will my child need therapy for?
Your child’s therapist will have a clearer idea of this after assessment, it varies greatly from one child to another. An average starting point would be therapy once a week for around 9 weeks, obviously this can change depending on the difficulty and severity of your child’s communication needs.
How does children’s counselling work?
Children’s counselling has the same aim as adult counselling. It’s a safe space where your child can feel free to express their feelings and worries. The counsellor will use their training and expertise to build a warm and trusting relationship with them, so they feel empowered to explore their difficulties.
Each young person is unique. Some will have a strong idea of how they wish to use the sessions and will talk through their issues confidently. For others, they may need more encouragement from their counsellor. Creative and play therapy is often an effective way of helping children open up and express their feelings. With our interactive, online games, your child is able to engage in fun and creative activities which support the therapeutic process and improve their emotional wellbeing.
Which children might benefit from online counselling?
Most children will face some emotional difficulties, and at those times, counselling could be the answer. There is no limitation to which children can be referred for counselling if you and/or the child feel it may help them. Many children benefit from counselling because it builds self-esteem and encourages self-expression, self-awareness and the development of good mental health strategies. Children who may benefit from counselling could be struggling with anxiety, low mood, anger, difficult home lives, friendship difficulties, bereavement, bullying or health problems.
Where a child may be suffering from a serious mental health condition such as an eating disorder or psychosis, we would advise that support specifically for those issues is sought from the G.P. However, we are happy to discuss any child referral to assist them in receiving the best support.
How long are the sessions and how many will my child need?
Each online counselling session lasts 45 minutes. Following the initial assessment session the counsellor will make a recommendation as to whether our online service is suitable for your child. If it is appropriate, we will make a suggestion for how many sessions, based on the individual needs of your child. This will usually be between 6-12 sessions. The appointments usually take place at the same time each week unless agreed otherwise with the counsellor.
What happens in the referral appointment?
The referral appointment is between the parent and one of our counsellors. It’s your chance to talk to one of our qualified counsellors about whether counselling is appropriate for your child. The counsellor will also ask you some questions about your child’s emotional difficulties. This will help them to determine whether our service is suitable for your child, and will also ensure they match your child with the right counsellor.
What happens in the first session?
The first session is between the child and their allocated counsellor. It’s a chance for your child to spend time getting to know their new counsellor and ask any questions, in order to decide whether they’d like to go ahead with the sessions. Our highly-skilled counsellors will spend the session building rapport with your child, so they feel comfortable enough to open up about their feelings. The counsellor will also carry out an assessment questionnaire in order to learn more about your child’s difficulties. Following the first session the counsellor will confirm whether our service is suitable for your child, and suggest how many sessions would be appropriate.
Can I sit in on my child’s counselling session?
Counselling is a one-to-one therapy and it is important that your child is able to have their session privately. The counsellor will work with them to create a trusting and therapeutic space where they can discuss anything that is on their mind. This private space will improve your child’s feeling of emotional safety and allow them to experience the full benefit of the counselling. In some cases the parent may begin the session in the room, in order to make sure the online session has connected. However, it is important that the child is then left to continue their counselling session with complete privacy.
What if my child says bad things about me?
All our counsellors are trained to listen without bias or judgement. We understand that family relationships can be difficult and at times all young people will feel negatively towards their parents. Many of our counsellors are parents themselves and will understand this first hand. Having a safe space to express these feelings could help your child to overcome some of their negative emotions and is likely to improve their relationships with their loved ones. Assuming a safeguarding issue has not been raised, our counsellors will always support your child through family issues with discretion and sensitivity.
How do you safeguard children and young people?
Safeguarding children and young people is the highest priority to us at Mable Therapy. We are trained in safer recruiting practices to ensure that all our therapists are committed to the wellbeing of their clients which includes being fully qualified, DBS checked (enhanced), insured and BACP registered. Our therapists all report to a Case Manager within Mable Therapy and attend monthly supervision with a clinical supervisor. Should our counsellors have any concerns they will adhere strictly to our safeguarding procedures and raise their concerns.
What equipment do I need for a Mable session?
Any laptop or a desktop computer with a webcam will work fine. If you have a tablet such as an iPad or a Samsung Galaxy then Mable should work on those too. As a rule of thumb if you can video chat on the device then you can use it for Mable. Unfortunately, mobile phones are not usable as the therapists use tools which won’t fit on such small displays.
How will I contact the Mable therapist?
You can always send a message to your child’s therapist directly through Mable. They will reply to you as soon as possible, usually within 48 hours. Your therapist will also call you before the initial assessment to gather background information.
How can I check if my equipment will work properly?
Once you are logged into the Mable system, you will be asked to take our tech test – this will go through each step with you to ensure that everything is ready for your session.
Is there any research supporting teletherapy?
Yes. Teletherapy is very popular in the US and in Australia, but is starting to be used worldwide. Our very own Clinical Director Martha Currie created a white paper, and there are also several research papers out there, as well as the Royal College of Speech and Language Therapist’s telepractice clinical guidelines.
What do I do if I’m having technical problems?
Don’t worry there is plenty of help available. You can call us on 0800 024 8646 if you need help urgently, or you can have a look at our detailed Help Guide which can be found here. https://help.mable.co.uk/en/
Is Mable GDPR compliant?
Are Mable Staff DBS checked?
Mable therapists all have an up to date Disclosure and Barring Service check. These are carried out on all staff whose roles involve contact with children and /or vulnerable adults. We employ a 3-year rolling programme of re-checking DBS certificates for holders of all identified posts.
What safeguarding training do Mable therapy staff receive?
All staff who, through their role, are in contact with children and /or vulnerable adults complete safeguarding training to level 3 or above. Sources and types of training will include the following courses: Working Together to Safeguard Children and Young People; Child Sexual Exploitation; Recognising and Responding to Neglect; Safeguarding Training for Managers; Vulnerability and Risk; Working with Hard to Engage Parents and Carers.