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Child Language Teaching and Therapy 30(2)

References
The McGuire Programme: www.mcguireprogramme.com (February 2014).
British Stammering Association: www.stammering.org (February 2014).

Saunders E (2012) The brain game: The vocabulary and word finding game. Milton Keynes:
Speechmark. 47.25. ISBN 978-0-86388-813-7

Reviewed by: Anne Ellis, Specialist Teacher, 20 Somerdale Road, Bournville, Birmingham B31 2EG, UK
Email: jgellis@btconnect.com

A game designed to support the development of vocabulary and to improve word finding ability is
always welcome by teachers who work with pupils with language impairment. Children with word
finding difficulties have problems in recalling the right word and those with vocabulary difficulties
may not know the word. Teaching these skills is fundamental to the development of vocabulary and
continually need support.
The model of word finding in this game is related to Levelts (1991) model of learning new
words by linking to previously learnt words through category, function, location and attributes, and
later developing the ability to sort, identify and generate words. These seven areas are explained
clearly in the accompanying leaflet.
We trialled this game with several children from five to eleven years old, all of whom had
speech and language impairment, and had not necessarily expected a positive response. However,
the children thoroughly enjoyed the game and asked to play it again. It was fun and enjoyable to
them, and it was not onerous. The game helped to develop the skills of category, function, location
and attributes. The three challenge cards time, teaser and link developed their ability to name,
categorize and give an increasing number of objects within 30 seconds.
This game consists of a baseboard, three sets of challenge cards, counters, dice, reward boards
and a timer. The instruction leaflet explains the theory and rationale behind the game, although the
explanation of how to play the suggested games was not as clear as it might have been.
The game supported and developed the childrens word finding and improved their ability to
categorize. As an assessment tool, areas in which the children had difficulties were highlighted and
identified for future therapy. All of the pupils ability to explain the odd one out, to explain the
category, and to name a set of objects within a set time using the timer provided improved over the
course of the activity.

References

Levelt WJM (1991) Lexical access in speech production. Oxford: Blackwell.

Dobinson C and Wren Y (eds) (2013) Creating practice-based evidence: A guide for SLTs.
Guildford: J and R Press. xvi and 249pp. Paperback 19.99. ISBN 978-1-907826-09-2

Reviewed by: Mary Hartshorne, Director of Outcomes and Information, I CAN, 21 Queen Street, Collingham,
Newark NG23 7NJ, UK
Email: mhartshorne@ican.org.uk (received January 2014)
Book Review 233

This is a timely and practical book for speech and language therapists wanting or needing to
research or evaluate their practice. The 10 chapters, each authored by therapists/researchers,
lead the reader through a clear process of translating an idea into a useful and usable study,
through selecting appropriate methodology and outcomes and on to data collection and analy-
sis. There is a practical emphasis throughout on ensuring that research is planned and carried
out in a purposeful way, ensuring that findings are used to reflect, inform and communicate.
The editors set out in this book to bridge the gap between clinical practice and active research,
motivated by their own experiences in research and clinical roles. They do this successfully by
providing a useful framework of stages, levels and approaches that make doing research seem
achievable. Right from the opening explanation of the difference between service evaluation,
audit and research, this book makes accessible what will always be a complex process. Each
chapter has a consistent format, which although it leads to some overlap in content does also
allow for reinforcing of approaches and principles, and for cross referencing similar issues and
resources available.
The focus is on research in the clinical context. The book clearly acknowledges the challenges that
clinicians face, such as time, resourcing, and the complexity of interventions, but it also suggests
solutions, support and signposting. We are encouraged to explore ways to embed evidence gathering
in everyday practice, and how we can get support from colleagues, managers and local networks. It
shows how research can address many of the clinical and service demands that therapists face such
as user involvement or providing evidence of need for commissioners.
As well as this, the book grounds research in practice by helpfully using clinical examples to
provide context, and including very practical hands-on advice; for example, how to run a focus
group, as well as helpful exercises (with answers!) to engage the reader. The issues it tackles,
such as how to use self-report measures with subjects who have poor self-reflection skills, or
how to get an appropriate level of language in outcome measures, will chime with speech and
language therapists.
Relevant to all speech and language therapists, the focus is on the UKs NHS employed therapists,
meaning that some of the resources, support and signposting are not accessible to those employed by
others. This book will provide speech and language therapists with a practical step-by-step guide to
evidencing their practice. It is written in a way that means they can read it cover to cover, or dip in
and out. This makes it useful for practitioners new to research as well as those who are already
involved, and adds to its attraction. It is testament to the current focus on research in the profession
that some of the links are already out of date. I suspect there will be regular revised editions of this
accessible, practical book!Book review

Nash S (ed.) (2013) Communication and language activities: Running groups for school-aged children.
Buckingham: Hinton House. 304pp. Paperback 29.99. ISBN 978-1-906531-52-2

Reviewed by: Glinette Woods, Inclusion Advisor with a Specialism in Speech and Language, London Borough
of Barking and Dagenham School Improvement Service, Roycraft House, 5th floor, 15 Linton Road, Barking IG11
8HE, UK
Email: Glinette.Woods@lbbd.gov.uk

This book was written by speech and language therapists and consists of over 140 games and activi-
ties that cover all aspects of communication. The authors have graded the activities by difficulty
Reproduced with permission of the copyright owner. Further reproduction prohibited without
permission.