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The Early Intervention Kit
Ages: Birth-3   Grades: Birth-PreK

This kit has the essential information and tools for successful early intervention services.  Effectively address assessment, intervention, and documentation for pre-linguistic skills, speech and language development, and sound production.


  • Understand the unique aspects of EI service delivery, assessment, and intervention
  • Provide effective intervention for pre-linguistic skills, receptive language, expressive language, sound production, and AAC
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This favorite tool of SLPs who provide birth to three services is authored by nationally-recognized lecturer, Nancy B. Swigert.  The Early Intervention Kit includes:  

183-page Therapy Guide

Information on assessment, goals, treatment, and documentation including these helps specific to early intervention:

  • complete inventory of speech and language developmental milestones
  • short-term and long-term goals for pre-linguistic skills, receptive and expressive language, and sound production
  • development of communicative intent and functions
  • how to adjust for prematurity
  • home-based vs. center-based assessments
  • the Hawaii Preparing for Integrated Preschool Assessment
  • Symbolic Play Scale Checklist
  • documentation forms (print from the FREE CD)
  • developing the Individualized Family Service Plan (IFSP)
  • strategies for parental input and involvement in therapy
  • overview of medical disorders and syndromes
  • implementation of AAC

187-page Activities Book

More than 200 activities address prelinguistic skills, receptive language, expressive language, and sound production in a developmental sequence.  Educational handouts supplement teaching and can be printed from the FREE CD.  Each activity includes:

  • treatment objective and goals
  • instructions and teaching suggestions
  • expected age of development
  • list of materials/toys needed

88 Sign Language Cards

  • vocabulary words 
  • the alphabet 
  • numbers 1-10
  • copy the cards or print them from the FREE CD


Copyright © 2004


183-page therapy guide, 187-page activities book plus a CD of reproducible pages, 88 sign language cards, vinyl folder

Thank you so much for creating such a valuable resource!  It has been very useful to me since I work with a large number of Head Start preschool children.  The parent handouts, therapy guide, and activities are informative, easy to understand, and straight to the point. 

Maria Moye, SLP
Burbank, CA



What a treasure!  I purchased The Early Intervention Kit at an ASHA convention—now I don't leave home without it.  It has everything I need as a speech provider to infants and toddlers.  I have used many of the suggested goals and activities—and they work!  I feel so much more confident and equipped as a therapist.  I have told all my friends about this most wonderful tool.  Thanks so much.

Marcia Richards, SLP
Elmont, NY

  • Assessment and intervention of communication disorders within the birth-3 population should be a dynamic and evolving process continually involving the child, parents, and all members of the multidisciplinary team (Rossetti, 2001).
  • ASHA (2008) recommends that speech-language pathologists (SLPs) provide information on communication-enhancing strategies to caregivers in order for carryover of targeted skills to occur in everyday routines.
  • Early intervention government mandates require intervention in a natural environment with parent education on ways to implement targeted therapy skills throughout the child's daily activities (IDEA, 2004).
  • Early intervention is effective on numerous measures, including communication skills gained by the child, teaching strategies learned by the family, and possible reduction of later special education costs by the public school system (Rossetti, 2001).
  • Children who are showing speech and language delays need multiple opportunities and various therapy techniques to improve these skills.  Some therapy techniques include use of augmentative alternative communication (AAC), imitation of the child, minimizing pressure on the child to speak, and use of speech with exaggerated intonation (DeThorne, Johnson, Walder, & Mahurin-Smith, 2009).
  • AAC should be included in a comprehensive early intervention program to allow young children functional communication with a variety of individuals.  AAC can take on a variety of forms, including gestures, sign, picture symbols, or speech-output devices (Romski & Sevcik, 2005).

The Early Intervention Kit incorporates these principles and is also based on expert professional practice.


American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). (2008). Roles and responsibilities of speech-language pathologists in early intervention [Guidelines]. Retrieved August 28, 2009, from

DeThorne, L.S., Johnson, C.J., Walder, L., Mahurin-Smith, J. (2009). When "Simon Says" doesn't work: Alternatives to imitation for facilitating early speech development. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 18, 133-145.

Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA). (2004). Retrieved August 28, 2009, from

Romski, M., & Sevcik, R.A. (2005). Augmentative communication and early intervention: Myths and realities. Infants & Young Children, 18(3), 174-185.

Rossetti, L.M. (2001). Communication intervention birth to three (2nd ed.). Canada: Singular Thompson Learning.


Nancy B. Swigert


Nancy B. Swigert, M.A., CCC-SLP, received her master's degree from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.  She is the president of Swigert & Associates, Inc., a private practice that has been providing services in the Lexington, Kentucky area for over 25 years.  The practice provides early intervention services in child care and home settings and through their contractual arrangement with Central Baptist Hospital.  In addition to administering the private practice, Nancy spends much of her time providing patient care.  She provides services to young children and adults with feeding and swallowing disorders and to medically fragile infants and toddlers with communication delays and disorders.

Nancy also lectures across the country on topics, that include adult and pediatric dysphagia, reading disorders, dysarthria, developmental apraxia, and evidence-based practice.  This is her fifth publication with LinguiSystems.  Her other books are The Source for Dysphagia Third Edition, The Source for Pediatric Dysphagia Second Edition, The Source for Dysarthria Second Edition, and The Source for Reading Fluency.

Nancy served as president of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association in 1998 and continues to be very involved with ASHA, currently serving as chair of the Health Care Economics Committee and on the Steering Committee for Special Interest Division 13: Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders.  She has served as president of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation.


There are many unique features about providing services to children birth-to-three years of age.  Speech-language pathologists (SLPs) play an integral role in this service provision.  The ASHA Position Statement on The Roles of Speech-Language Pathologists in Service Delivery to Infants, Toddlers, and Their Families recognizes that SLPs are uniquely qualified to address the broad spectrum of needs of families and their infants and toddlers who are at risk for or who have developmental disabilities.  The SLP assumes various roles in addressing these needs, including screening and identification, assessment and evaluation, design, planning, direct service delivery, and monitoring of treatment programs as well as case management and consultation (ASHA, 1990).  Rossetti (2001) points out that age-appropriate communication is the single best predictor of school performance.  "Communication is the developmental domain that with greatest frequency distinguishes at risk from low risk or no risk children" (Rossetti, 2001).

Clinical experience with this population is not obtained by most SLPs in graduate school.  It is unusual for a graduate clinician to see a child under the age of three, and even more uncommon for them to be given exposure to providing services in a home-based environment.  Experienced SLPs trained before the Infants and Toddlers with Disabilities Program, referred to as Part H of The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), was implemented also have limited knowledge about how services to this age group should be provided.

The Early Intervention Kit includes:

  • Therapy Guide—information on assessment, goals, treatment objectives, treatment methods, augmentative and alternative communication, and documentation
  • Activities Book—activities for pre-linguistic skills, receptive language, expressive language, and sound production; also parent handouts
  • 88 cards with vocabulary words in sign language, including the alphabet and numbers 1-10

The Therapy Guide details many of the unique features of providing services to children birth-to-three and provides practical suggestions for dealing with the unique needs of these children and their families.  Medical disorders associated with this population are described and efficacy about services to this population is discussed.  Approaches to the assessment of communication of young children is also addressed.

Chapters 7–10 provide information about treating four main skill areas: pre-linguistic, receptive language, expressive language, and sound production.  Chapter 11 includes information on the use of augmentative/alternative communication.  Chapter 12 provides examples that should help streamline your paperwork.  (Note: Development of feeding/swallowing is not addressed in this kit.  The Source for Pediatric Dysphagia Second Edition [Swigert, 1998, 2010] includes in-depth information on swallowing disorders, feeding techniques, and goals for treatment.)

Activities for the four main skill areas described in Chapters 7-10 are in the Activities Book.  These activities can be completed in therapy and can be demonstrated to caregivers to help infants and toddlers achieve short-term goals in these areas.  Parent handouts are also found in the Activities Book.  These handouts include a variety of information for parents (e.g., language development, strategies to facilitate communication).

Many children in the birth-to-three age range with delayed expressive language are exposed to the use of manual signs to augment their communication attempts and to stimulate their verbal language development.  The cards in this kit have pictures and descriptions of 88 manual signs that can serve as a resource in therapy or that can be copied for caregivers.

The Early Intervention Kit is not intended to be a curriculum but rather a compilation of information and activities you can use to implement a treatment plan.  You have the flexibility to choose the goals to address and the treatment activities to address those goals.  After identifying the child's and family's needs, an individualized treatment plan can be developed using the included long-term and short-term goals.  Then you can choose the treatment objectives/activities to help the child achieve those goals.

This kit has truly been a team effort on the part of the staff of Swigert & Associates, Inc.  Some of my associates have written chapters in the Therapy Guide and others have contributed significantly to the development of the activities in the Activities Book.  All of the contributors are seasoned providers of early intervention services, recognizable by the trunks full of toys in their vehicles, briefcases full of charts with detailed notes and reports, and broad smiles on their faces from the delight of making a difference in a young child's life.

We hope the information in this kit will make service provision easier for you, and leave you with a smile on your face.

Nancy                  Kim

Jennifer               Michelle

Sarah S.              Ashley

Verity                   Lissa

Sarah C.             Julie