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WALC 3 Everyday Problem Solving
Workbook of Activities for Language and Cognition
Ages: Adults   Grades: Adults

Practice seven specific problem solving skills in isolation.  Then, apply them to depicted situations and generate and evaluate solutions.

Outcomes

  • Identify problems
  • Generate and analyze solutions to problems
  • Paraphrase and summarize information
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Focus on the cognitive processes and strategies used in problem solving.  Hundreds of problem scenarios are presented based on common themes of money, work, family and social relationships, health and safety, and sports and leisure.  Multiple-choice and open-ended questions guide clients to practice the targeted skills.

The first section of the book gives practice in these skills:

Problem Solving
Identify a problem statement based on a brief scenario.  Generate a quick solution based on limited information.

Analyzing Problems
Clients study scenarios based on everyday activities.  Many of the scenarios are based on functional reading such as advertisements, receipts, prescription labels, and sports schedules.  The activity questions prompt clients to think about details that will help solve the depicted problems. 

Understanding & Applying Information
Identify information that is useful for problem-solving and apply it to depicted situations. 

Paraphrasing & Summarizing
Clients restate information in their own words.  In the process, they identify the most important information.  This skill helps them arrive at quicker solutions in problem solving. 

Making Inferences
Clients learn to consider all the factors when they make inferences in a variety of depicted situations. 

Empathizing
Clients consider the feelings of others and their own feelings as they analyze problems.

Evaluating
Clients weigh the solutions to problems, paying close attention to details. 

The last section of the book gives practice in integrating the above skills.  Real-life problems are presented in a brief article, similar to something you might read in a local newspaper.  Clients use the information in the article, the corresponding picture, and their own experience to approach the problems effectively. 

Copyright © 2003

Components
191 pages, answer key
  • Problem-solving skills include identifying problems, goal setting, planning, strategic thinking, and generating alternative solutions (Kennedy & Coelho, 2005).
  • Problem-solving difficulties are associated with neurological damage and disease (Ylvisaker & Feeney, 1998).
  • Problem-solving skills are necessary to complete everyday tasks of daily living. In fact, deficits in problem solving may impact independent living more than physical or cognitive limitations (Lezak, Howieson, & Loring, 2004).
  • Effective cognitive rehabilitation improves functioning in areas relevant to the individual's everyday life (Cicerone et al., 2000).
  • Speech-language pathologists' roles in treatment of individuals with cognitive-communication disorders include training discrete cognitive processes, teaching specific functional skills, and developing compensatory strategies and support systems (ASHA, 2005).

WALC 3 Everyday Problem Solving incorporates these principles and is also based on expert professional practice.

References

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). (2005). Roles and responsibilities of speech-language pathologists in diagnosis, assessment, and treatment of individuals with cognitive-communication disorders [Position Statement]. Retrieved March 26, 2009 from www.asha.org/policy

Cicerone, K., Dahlberg, C., Kalmar, K., Langenbahn, D., Malec, J., Bergquist, T., . . . Morse, P.A. (2000). Evidence-based cognitive rehabilitation: Recommendations for clinical practice. Archives of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, 81(12), 1596-1615.

Kennedy, M.R., & Coelho, C. (2005). Self-regulation after traumatic brain injury: A framework for intervention of memory and problem solving. Seminars in Speech and Language, 26, 242-255.

Lezak, M.D., Howieson, D.B., & Loring, J.L. (2004). Neuropsychological assessment (4th ed.). New York: Oxford University Press.

Ylvisaker, M., & Feeney, T.J. (1998). Collaborative brain injury intervention. San Diego, CA: Singular.

Author(s)

Linda Bowers, Rosemary Huisingh, Paul F. Johnson, Carolyn LoGiudice, Jane Orman

Biography

Linda Bowers, M.A., SLP, is a LinguiSystems co-owner and co-author of many therapy and testing materials including Grammar Scramble, Expressive Language Kit, Expressive Language Test, TOPS Kit Adolescent, TOPS Adolescent Test, and ACHIEV Revised.

Rosemary Huisingh, M.A., SLP, is a LinguiSystems co-owner and co-author of many therapy and testing materials including Expressive Language Kit, Expressive Language Test, TOPS Kit Adolescent, TOPS Adolescent Test, WORD Test R (Elementary), and ACHIEV Revised.

Paul F. Johnson, B.A., is an editor and writer for LinguiSystems and the author of many LinguiSystems titles, including 125 Ways to Be a Better Writer, WRITEopoly, Category Scramble, 50 Quick Play Language Games, and Word Scramble.

Carolyn LoGiudice, M.S., CCC-SLP, wrote and edited products and tests for LinguiSystems for 25 years, incorporating her previous experience as an SLP in school and clinic settings.  She is now retired and savoring time with her family, friends, and hobbies.

Jane Orman, M.A., CCC-SLP, is a test developer and customer care representative for LinguiSystems.  She is co-author of many testing and therapy materials including WORD Kit Elementary, WORD Test R (Elementary), Expressive Language Test, Listening Test, Listening Kit, TOPS Kit Elementary, TOPS R (Elementary) Test, and Just for Adults Reading Comprehension.

 

 

Introduction

The authors who have created this book have varied backgrounds, but they have one thing in common: each is committed to building and enhancing cognitive skills.  The abilities to reason, to think critically, and to problem solve not only enhance our ability to survive, they also enhance our lives.  Someone who has temporarily lost these skills due to a brain trauma will benefit from the activities in these pages in a variety of ways.  Not only will your clients begin to relearn the cognitive survival skills they have lost, but they may eventually enhance their previous skills by systematically rebuilding them on a stronger foundation.

The activities in WALC 3 are split into two sections.  The first section (Units 1- 7) includes isolated practice in the following skills:

  • Identifying Problems & Generating Solutions
  • Analyzing Problems
  • Understanding & Applying Information
  • Paraphrasing & Summarizing
  • Making Inferences
  • Empathizing
  • Evaluating

In addition to the breakdown of skill areas, the situations are also separated by interest areas: Money, Work, Family & Social Relationships, Health & Safety, and Sports & Leisure.  Each page of the first section of the book is coded with a symbol in the upper left-hand corner of the page to guide you.  You might find that matching these interest areas with those of your clients will produce even more successful results.

The second section of the book (Unit 8) includes practice in integrating the cognitive and problem-solving skills included in the first section.  Each situation includes a photograph and brief story, much like you'd find in a newspaper, followed by several questions about the passage.  This type of practice allows your clients to use the isolated skills they've already practiced in the book along with their own experiences to respond to a real-life situation.

We hope this book will help your clients rebuild their problem-solving and cognitive skills and enhance their quality of life in the process.  Good luck!