Michelle Hoppes, M.S. CCC-SLP/L

Speech Therapist

My therapy style is client-oriented. Kids aren’t motivated to work if they know it’s work. However, if they feel like they are calling the shots and have a say in what they are doing, they are much more likely to practice and make progress on their goals. It also helps them feel like an equal, which boosts their self-esteem. My passion for speech and language comes from my own experience with stuttering. Both my father and I stutter, and we have struggled with getting out thoughts out when talking to others. I went into the career to learn about strategies I could use to help myself and found that I loved the field. I also loved the idea of helping others who struggle with speech or language.

Speech Therapy

Throughout my career I have focused my learning and treatment for clients on the Autism Spectrum from the ages of 2-22. I have learned that being direct and having structure generally helps when providing therapy to make progress. As well as trying various forms of communication, for both expression as well as understanding.

I have the same amount of experience working with device users. From low-tech to high-tech, there is a wide range of options for any individual’s communication needs. It’s always amazing to see how language can blossom when a child is given the power of communication.

I have three years of experience working with clients that struggle with articulation or phonological disorders. While practice makes perfect, I love finding ways to incorporate drills in a fun way to make it feel like we are just playing around. I also love explaining oral anatomy to older clients who want to know the reason why they are struggling and how to fix it.

Parent Role in Therapy
I want to include parents and families as much as possible to promote carryover and understanding of what I am doing. It may look like play, but there are reasons why therapy is structured in that way. Play is one of the best ways for children to learn and grow, so using methods that use play will show more progress.

Certification/Experience

  • Master’s Degree in Communication Sciences and Disorders (Western Illinois University)
  • Kaufman’s Childhood Apraxia of Speech
  • Michelle Garcia Winner’s Social Thinking
  • Color My Conversation (CMC)
  • Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS)
  • Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC)
  • Articulation and Phonology Treatment and Strategies
  • Language Delays and Disorders
  • Social Thinking
  • Conversation Strategies
  • Clinical Education (SLP Supervising Credit)
  • Speech and Language Training for Children on the Autism Spectrum
  • Childhood Apraxia of Speech
  • Parent Strategies to Foster Language Development in Children
  • Stuttering Treatment Strategies
  • Voice Evaluation

Extra Awesome Stuff I Have Done

  • Trained school staff on using AAC devices in functional ways
  • Trained parents on how to promote language in the home
  • Presented to a Transition Team in a school about using devices and why they can help with communication
  • Created “AAC Bootcamp” as a social group and core language course for students with Autism who use AAC devices in the school setting.