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Easy Does It® for Apraxia Preschool
Ages: 2-6   Grades: Toddler-1

Tyler Turtle and friends lead multisensory, systematic therapy activities for preschoolers with speech difficulties.  The comprehensive program emphasizes sound sequencing and building sound and syllable complexity.


  • Build intelligible speech
  • Develop sound and syllable sequencing
  • Produce sounds in isolation, syllables, words, phrases, and sentences
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Experienced and beginning clinicians love the Easy Does It series for its:  

  • detailed explanation of therapy techniques
  • systematic lesson plans
  • clear goals and objectives
  • student practice activities and materials

Easy Does It for Apraxia Preschool is for children who:

  • are nonverbal or have unintelligible speech with age-appropriate receptive skills
  • have inconsistent error patterns
  • don't show progress with traditional therapy approaches
  • demonstrate motor-planning deficits for speech
  • lose intelligibility at the sentence level
  • have increased errors when using complex phonetic combinations

The program is organized around six treatment levels or goals.  Each treatment level is divided into sequential objectives.  There are detailed, step-by-step therapy suggestions and activities for each objective.  The treatment levels/goals are:

  1. establish turn-taking and imitative behaviors
  2. consistent production of vowel sounds and sequences, and isolated consonants
  3. combine consonants and vowels to form syllables
  4. produce one-syllable CVC words
  5. produce multisyllabic words and use them in phrases
  6. produce consonant blends in words and in phrases

The program uses multisensory teaching with action and play-based activities.  Copy the student activity pages.  The reproducible pages include: picture cards, hand signal cards, worksheets, and activities featuring Tyler Turtle and friends. 

The convenient program also includes:

  • word, phrase, and sentence lists
  • consonant inventory form
  • parent interview form
  • parent progress sheet
  • observation form
  • therapy tracking form
  • sample lesson plans

Copyright © 1994


2-Book Set: 178-page therapy manual, 151-page materials book

I just wanted to say thank you.  I am an American living in Korea with my two children.  I have no access to English-speaking speech therapists.  A few months ago I ordered Easy Does It For Apraxia-Preschool for my 2 year-old son, who, although extremely bright, did not talk.  The program is wonderful!!!  I can not say enough good things about it.  The simple but fun exercises have unlocked something in my son.  His speech has blossomed.  Today was a huge breakthrough—for the first time he was able to articulate the long U sound on its own.  This means that for the first time today, I got to hear my son say "I love you."  Thank you.  Thank you.  Thank you.

Patrica Baker, Parent
Ulsan, South Korea

  • The principles of motor learning theory and intensity of speech-motor practice are frequently emphasized in effective treatment programs (ASHA, 2007).
  • A multisensory approach to treatment is often recommended.  The use of touch cues, sign language, visual prompts, and pictures have been described as very effective for children with childhood apraxia of speech (CAS) (ASHA, 2007).
  • Hallmark characteristics of CAS are vowel errors, variability, and prosodic differences (Jacks, Marquardt, & Davis, 2005).
  • It is important to target syllable awareness and production in treating the speech of children with CAS (Jacks, Marquardt, & Davis, 2005).
  • Effective change of speech patterns within CAS includes a focus on correct speech-sound productions in various word shapes, including multisyllabic utterances (Hodge, 2008).
  • Appropriate intervention for a child with CAS involves not only the professional, but the family and teachers as well.  The speech-language pathologist needs to educate these important team members on the child's current therapy objectives and help set up a home and classroom therapy program to facilitate carryover of targeted skills outside of therapy sessions (ASHA, 2007).

Easy Does It for Apraxia Preschool incorporates these principles and is also based on expert professional practice.


American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). (2007). Childhood apraxia of speech [Technical Report]. Retrieved August 5, 2009, from

Hodge, M.H. (2008, November). Motor speech disorders in pediatric practice. Presentation at the meeting of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, Chicago, IL.

Jacks, A., Marquardt, T.P., & Davis, B.L. (2005). Consonant and syllable structure patterns in childhood apraxia of speech: Developmental change in three children. Journal of Communication Disorders, 39(6), 424-441.


Robin Strode Downing, Catherine Chamberlain


Robin and Catherine have been practicing speech-language pathologists for a combined total of over 65 years.  They have a special interest in working with children who have severe communication disorders, including children with childhood apraxia of speech, oral-motor dysfunction, phonological disorders, autism, and Down Syndrome.  Their skill is in developing functional, research-based therapy programs and therapy plans for children with severe communication disorders.  They have extensive experience working with children from toddlerhood throughout the school years.  Robin and Catherine have worked together for more than 25 years and consider themselves to be "two bodies and one brain."

They both hold the Certificate of Clinical Competency from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association and are licensed as speech-language pathologists in Kentucky.  Robin serves on the advisory board of the Childhood Apraxia of Speech Association of North America (CASANA).

In addition to this book, Robin and Catherine are the joint authors of Easy Does It for Apraxia and Motor Planning, Easy Does It for Articulation An Oral-Motor Approach, The Source for Childhood Apraxia of Speech, The Source for Down Syndrome, and SPARC for Concepts.  Catherine is also the author of The Basic Concept Workbook and Basic Concept Pictures.

Robin and Catherine have presented numerous seminars on Childhood Apraxia of Speech and Oral-Motor Facilitation of Speech throughout the United States and Canada.  They present dynamic, informative, and fun workshops.

Robin and Catherine were the joint recipients of the 2004 Clinical Achievement Award from the Kentucky Speech-Hearing-Language Association, which is the highest professional award offered at the state level.  They were nominated for "the innovative development and delivery of a Childhood Apraxia of Speech treatment protocol that is being used throughout the United States and has been incorporated into university curricula."  They also serve as mentors and consultants to parents and speech-language pathologists throughout the country.


The young child with speech impairments can present a special challenge to the speech-language pathologist.  Easy Does It for Apraxia Preschool is designed for the child who:

  • has unintelligible speech
  • is nonverbal or has limited verbal output with age-appropriate receptive language skills
  • has inconsistent error patterns, even with repetitions of the same word
  • doesn't show progress using traditional articulation or phonology approaches
  • demonstrates subtle or more evident motor-planning deficits for speech
  • demonstrates difficulty sequencing sounds to form syllables and words
  • progresses slowly and doesn't carry over learned speech skills
  • may be intelligible at the word level, but loses intelligibility at the sentence level
  • has delays in development of speech and expressive language
  • has increased errors when using complex phonetic combinations
  • has a diagnosis of developmental verbal apraxia (DVA)

Easy Does It for Apraxia Preschool is a two-book set that was developed for the preschool child.  By using the tips under each goal and the Important Strategies, you can easily adapt the program for preschool children with developmental delays.  It also emphasizes developing sound and syllable sequencing skills and closed syllables in increasingly complex tasks.  Individual phonemes are targeted, but should be incorporated into syllables and words as soon as possible.

Easy Does It for Apraxia Preschool is a systematic program for teaching:

  • isolated sounds
  • syllable productions
  • syllable sequencing
  • syllable closure
  • multisyllabic words
  • phrases and sentences
  • consonant blend words

Because each child is different, and Easy Does It for Apraxia Preschool is a systematic program, it's important to do a full diagnostic evaluation to determine where to begin and how to progress.  An examination of oral-motor skills should include inspection of the oral mechanism at rest, during eating, during imitation, during speech, and oral-tactile sensitivity.

Easy Does It for Apraxia Preschool uses preschool-level vocabulary, experiences, and activities to make speech practice more meaningful and fun for the child.  Most lessons provide a predictable routine which helps lessens sensory-motor and linguistic overload for the child.

Easy Does It for Apraxia Preschool has a Therapy Manual and a Materials Book that follow a fun, systematic program for preschool children.

The Therapy Manual contains:

  • goals and objectives
  • strategies
  • tips
  • activities
  • forms
  • hand signal descriptions and pictures
  • lesson plan
  • word lists and pictures

The Materials Book contains:

  • vowel turtles
  • sound picture cards
  • action activity sheets
  • activity sheets
  • references

Easy Does It for Apraxia Preschool uses a multisensory approach.  Turtles are the unifying symbol in the program as they signify slow, easy speech and steady progress.  Children will love practicing their speech with Tyler Turtle and his friends.  Family members will feel a part of the therapy program.  You'll all have fun with the wide variety of activities in Easy Does It for Apraxia Preschool.

Robin and Catherine