Providing speech, language, and social communication services to children of all ages for 15 years! We specialize in physically-supportive services to children with autism diagnoses, and others who benefit from sensorimotor supports.

CDC News

On sale now!

Endorsed by barry prizant!

"It is hoped that this important work will help educators, therapists and parents move to more contemporary understandings and practices."

"Natural Language Acquisition on the Autism Spectrum: The Journey from Echolalia to Self-Generated Language is a wonderful resource that provides the most comprehensive consideration of echolalia and language characteristics of persons with autism to date."

"In this seminal work, Marge Blanc, an experienced clinician and clinical researcher, brings us back to a crucial understanding of language characteristics and language acquisition in ASD based on her deep understanding of language development from a social-pragmatic, child-centered perspective. Unfortunately, too many educators and therapists hold on to outdated and disproven perceptions of echolalia and gestalt language and attempt to 'treat' echolalia with a lack of knowledge of the historical context and research basis of our understanding of language development in ASD."

"By looking at echolalia only through a behavioral lens of pathology rather than through a developmental perspective based on research on autism and typical development, such practices may actually be hindering functional language development. It is hoped that this important work will help educators, therapists and parents move to more contemporary understandings and practices."

"This book is a 'must-read' for all who care about supporting social communication for persons with ASD based on research and sound clinical practice."

Barry M. Prizant, Ph.D., CCC-SLP
Adjunct Professor
Brown University

Director, Childhood Communication Services
Cranston, RI

Echolalia unscripted!

Echolalia communicates! And it jump-starts our students’ natural language development!

This ground-breaking book will show you how to:

  • Recognize the meaning and intentions behind echolalia
  • Support students on the autism spectrum from echolalia to self-generated language
  • Bring this information to families and your school teams
  • Connect with your students on the autism spectrum, and watch them grow!

NLA Book

Order your copy today!
$29.95 plus shipping and handling.

it's all about timing...

One of our best buddies uses his voice with great enthusiasm. For instance, during a home session he cheered to see that his friend brought bowling:

C: Bowling!
A: Are you just excited to see bowling and not to see me?
C: Bowling!
A: Thanks a lot!
C: …and you.

Later, when playing soccer (another favorite game), our friend used great timing with his enthusiasm:

C: Ready, set… (kicks soccer ball into goal) GOAL!

At the end of the session, our friend was sad to see bowling (and his friends) leave, so we promised that we would see him next week at CDC. We ended the session cheering for the future:


how to take marge's course on echolalia!

Marge’s on-line course on Natural Language Acquisition is available from Northern Speech Services HERE. The course is entitled Natural Language Acquisition in Autism: Echolalia To Self-Generated Language, and can be taken for ASHA CEUs.

Here are some of the things SLPs have said about the course:

"It was outstanding, well presented, easy to follow. Just outstanding”

“The entire content was useful. I appreciated the review of research supporting the clinical approach. I appreciated the consistent review of the model/framework which makes formulating a treatment plan attainable.”

“Thanks for the research and the evaluation and treatment information. This class affirmed what my clinical instinct has been telling me about teaching these to children to communicate. You may have to crawl in the window and live in their house awhile, to help them eventually walk out the front door of communication.”

“I especially appreciate having articles and handouts highlighted to share with co-workers and families.”

What's new on facebook?

Check out some new stories and articles on our CDC Facebook page!

even if you've read the articles on echolalia, you may want to read about: dyspraxic speech support, language retrieval, and self-regulation.

Read more at our articles page.

articles by Marge Blanc

Bringing It Home: Physical Supports for Speech at Home and in Other Environments

It's All Gibberish to Me: Redefining "Non-verbal"

More Than Words (Parts 1-6)

Click here for more articles by Marge Blanc


A Picture Speaks a Thousand Words


Summer Session:

Monday, June 15 – Friday, August 7

First Day of Fall Session:

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Welcome to CDC!

We are a small, non-profit clinic on the west side of Madison, WI, specializing in communication services for children who benefit from play and physical activity to support their interactions and language: children with challenges associated with autism, dyspraxia, and sensorimotor coordination. Please browse our site to learn more about us!

For some of the latest thinking on ASD and child development, please like our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter!

Featuring ...

Welcome to our new column, featuring one or two of our superstars each month!

This month’s superstar is a young man who is becoming more and more proficient with speaking to communicate — as well as more and more proficient with typing to communicate!

For most of Glenn's 21 years of life, his family knew he was talking, but had no idea what he might be saying. But now, Glenn is happy that his talking is being understood, and that it can supplement his typing! His quiet confirmation, “Uh huh!” can be heard punctuating the commentary of a member of his family or one of his friends. His quiet, “Huh uh!” can also be heard when Glenn is answering in the negative. People know to listen for these words — and Glenn loves it!

Glenn’s most complex communication is expressed through one finger ‘typing,’ or more accurately, letter-pointing. What is most remarkable about that is that Glenn discovered this method himself! He found that he could grab his brother’s hand and direct him to point in a way he could not by himself. And over time, Glenn could make his own finger do the typing as long as his brother (or someone else) provided some resistance. In this way, Glenn demonstrated his great language, his sense of humor, and his gentle kindness.

And now, when the time is right, Glenn can shift between orthographic communication and spoken communication, the message of each confirmed by the other. A couple months ago, we first tried this experiment: each person in the group took a short, quiet — and random — turn (because Glenn has to preserve his breath support and can talk the best when his speech is quiet; plus his purposeful initiation is limited by praxis challenges so it’s hard to take a turn at the ‘right’ time). There had to be at least two seconds between turns (because Glenn has to relax in order to access his breath, jaw opening, and voice); a communication turn could be anything, including eye contact or eye gaze, gesture, audible exhalation like a sigh; and spoken turns could only be three-words long at most (so a relaxed performance standard is set for Glenn).

Glenn loved it! He had been leafing through a favorite magazine on home decorating at the time (a common relaxing activity for him), so he had the best of all worlds. During the first round, his subtle turn was barely perceptible, but by the second round, he was empowered! Glenn started making short, quiet comments with just little bursts of air and relaxed vowels, that sounded like, “Heh…heh…hey!; whatever; ‘nother one; that; right there; like that over there…” After about 20 phrases, we commented on how smart Glenn was to have referents that all could see so that his speech could be more easily understood. He typed afterwords, “I love the silence most of all, but I also love the short talking and the slowness of it.”

Then Glenn really showed his empowerment! Still leafing through the magazine, Glenn started saying longer phrases and sentences, "I like that a lot; and that a lot; and that a lot …" Continuing for more than a minute, Glenn was absolutely delighted at ‘holding the floor’ while the five other people in the room were listening closely and finding out how Glenn would decorate a house. Asked if he wanted to type something to explain the satisfied look on his face, Glenn typed (with the ‘facilitation’ of proprioceptive resistance to slow down his arm movements): “Just so you know, it was neat to talk and have everyone listen.”

Later came a surprising question. Glenn typed: “Tell me what it would be like to be understood like this all the time. I can hardly imagine it but it must be wonderful.”

Most of us take our speech so much for granted that we don’t realize how wonderful it is! We told Glenn that, but also that with his grateful attitude, he was creating a social group that honored communication in a way that was most unique and special.

But, then, Glenn put everything back into an abundantly-human perspective. He typed: “This is my favorite time — except for skiing!”

Truly a superstar!