GPAEA's Next Top AAC Modeler

A competition for Districts who participated in PLO 2020

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In honor of February, the month of love, let’s show the love with a competition that speaks to one of the most important (and for some of us, most passionate) areas of our work - Augmentative & Alternative Communication!

So, why would you want to do this?

  • Fun in 2021 (did you see what we did there with that rhyme?)
  • Bragging rights
  • A healthy addiction to seeing kids become communicators of their OWN thoughts!
  • AND… Perhaps some SERIOUS brag swag! Woot Woot!!


Over the course of the remaining school year, you will attempt to model* core vocabulary 100x/day across 6-8 daily routines of the school day.

*Modeling needs to extend beyond requesting to include other purposes including, commenting, protesting, directing, asking questions, etc. There is evidence to suggest that a high frequency of models is needed to see communication happen, hence the 100 attempts to model. We are not looking for perfection just the attempts to get as close as possible. Divided out across daily routines and it’s quite doable!

Your friendly SLP and team member will connect with you for further clarification, practice, preparation, and just overall help.

HOW TO ENTER: Just email! Now? Yes, now!!

Email NOW!

Include district, grade level(s) AND team members names (e.g., teacher, para professional, principal, bus driver, OT, PT, etc.) with intention to compete!

Email again at the end of a four week run, and include a photo of participating adults + any/all robust core word AAC systems (boards, books, and/or devices) utilized for modeling AND any other works supporting your competitive spirit - like a data collection log, journal entries of modeled phrases and student responses, video(s), etc. Super easy, right?!

Here is an example/sample of a data collection table/log you can use. It’s nothing fancy but it shows the hard work and the NEED to get to that magic number of 100+ models. Core All Day Long - Opportunity Template

These two pieces of information (photo + documentation) will suffice as a complete entry for the team and should be submitted via email to your supporting SLP and Megan Farrell, GPAEA, AT Specialist:

A Grand Prize winner(s?) will be chosen from among the entries and announced on or before May 7th! EXTENDED THRU END OF SCHOOL YEAR DUE TO C19 PANDEMIC. WINNER(S?) ANNOUNCED AT START OF NEXT SCHOOL YEAR.

This competition is currently limited to the teams associated with the following districts (who participated in the PLO Course last Spring on Project Core): Albia, Burlington, Fairfield, Fort Madison, Mediapolis, & West Burlington.


Megan Farrell

Assistive Technology Specialist

Great Prairie AEA

Click on my email below to submit an entry. The competition runs from February 14 to April 30.

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Great Prairie Area Education Agency works as an educational partner with public and accredited, nonpublic schools to help students, school staff, parents and communities. Great Prairie AEA provides professional development and leadership to promote school improvement, a variety of instructional services, special education support services, and technology and media services. It is the policy of the Great Prairie Education Agency not to discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, religion, creed, age (for employment), marital status (for programs), sexual orientation, gender identity and socioeconomic status (for programs) in its educational programs and its employment practices. There is a grievance procedure for processing complaints of discrimination. If you have questions or a grievance related to this policy please contact Greg Manske, 3601 West Avenue, Burlington, IA 52601, (319) 753-6561 x1217, (employment practices) or Dr. Angelisa Fynaardt, 2814 N. Court Road, Ottumwa, IA 52501, (641) 682-8591 x5311, (educational programs).