I still remember when my son’s first device was delivered and how I held my breath opening the box, knowing how important this new journey was going to be for him, me and our family.
First, please know you aren’t alone. We’ve got your back. You can ask any question and I promise you, we will do whatever we can to help. You can reach our support team 7 days a week at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Where to begin
Here’s a little (ok, not so little) basic information to get you started:
1. Select your vocabulary
Proloquo2Go comes with the Crescendo vocabulary and its 3 levels. Using a Crescendo vocabulary significantly limits the need to do a lot of customizing. The Crescendo core vocabularies are designed to provide quick access to core words, those words that make up most of what we all say, right from the Home folder. Learn why core words are important and powerful for AAC.
We strongly recommend beginning with the Intermediate Core level. Choose a grid size large enough to fit many buttons on the screen, but small enough that the user can still see and touch the buttons. For many users without fine motor or visual impairments, 7x11 is a good starting size. Read the considerations for choosing the grid size.
To make sure the user’s language skills grow and the user doesn’t become stuck at the same vocabulary, we recommend choosing the largest grid size they can use. It's also possible to hide the buttons that the user is not yet ready for, and gradually reveal them as user skills grow. Use our Progressive Language feature to quickly and systematically hide and reveal buttons in a developmental order.
2. Personalize the vocabulary
Now that you have optimized the core word vocabulary for your user, use the tips from this Learn AAC article to help guide you to personalize the fringe vocabulary. Fringe vocabulary are those words that are needed to make a message more specific and personal, like family names, favorite places, foods, etc.
3. Save a backup file
Proloquo2Go makes internal backups automatically every day the app is in use. If you are running Proloquo2Go 5, you can set Proloquo2Go to automatically save the most recent backup from each user to iCloud, Google Drive or Dropbox. Note that iCloud only stores one backup from each user at a time, and it is replaced daily. It is worth manually saving a backup using another service every time you make major changes to be sure your customizations stay safe. Learn more about saving a backup.
4. Check out our Learn AAC section
AAC is a complex topic, and we want to make sure everyone has enough information, strategies, and confidence for successful AAC. That’s why we created our Learn AAC section, with articles about AAC setup, implementation, and roadblocks.
There's a lot of information there - so don't feel like you have to read them all at once. This guide gives you a good overview of what each article covers.
5. Model, model, model
For a long time, we provided users - especially those who are young or with cognitive and physical challenges - with only a few options. They quickly became uninterested and we thought it was because it was too hard. Sometimes, we tried to make it even simpler before everyone just gave up.
Now, we know better. We know that to teach someone to use the AAC system, we MUST use the system, too. This is called modeling. Learn more about what modeling is and how to do it.
Learn more through our support materials
We have tons of free resource materials available that will help make your journey a little easier!
These videos are a great place to start:
Other helpful resources can be found on our website.
Make sure to also check out our blog, with many useful content such as 14 creative activity ideas to build language and meaningful communication and the Do's and Don'ts of AAC.
Wondering where a particular word is? Our Search feature can help you to quickly locate words. It has been designed with a clinical perspective; not only will you see the path to the button you’re looking for, Proloquo2Go will also guide you through the path step-by-step. If the searched button is located in your Storage, it will automatically be added to the user’s vocabulary. Learn more about Search.
Looking for help figuring out how to actually use Proloquo2Go day to day? Check out the AssistiveWare Core Word Classroom for tons of free AAC implementation resources.
Check out these great AAC resources
Here are a couple great resources to get you started adding to your basic knowledge and understanding:
- PraacticalAAC Use their powerful search engine with key words like model, beyond requesting, core words, etc.
- The Communication Training Series These free webinars features Erin Sheldon, Caroline Musselwhite, Mary-Louise Bertram, and Maureen Nevers. Together they are presenting a year's worth of weekly one-hour webinars, and cover: - AAC best practices such as core word vocabulary - Aided language stimulation - Early literacy activities such as shared reading and writing
We hope this information helps getting you started. Please let us know if you have any questions. We are always happy to help. And sign-up for our monthly newsletter (at the bottom of this page) to stay informed about product updates and other useful information.
Share with peers
You may also be interested in joining one of our active closed Facebook groups to share ideas about what works and doesn't and access new resources. We have a Facebook group for family members and one for teachers and therapists.
And again, welcome to the AssistiveWare community!