We are open for business both face to face and Telehealth.
The waiting room is closed until further notice to protect the safety of our staff, families and clients.
Families call the office from their car, the therapist meets them outside to get their child and return their child.
If the family is scheduled for an evaluation only ONE parent is allowed and no other children can attend. 

If you been exposed to COVID we ask that you call the office and cancel your appointments.
If your child has to cancel multiple times there is no guarantee that your standing appointment can be saved upon your return. 


Creve Coeur, MO 314.567.4707
St. Peters, MO 636.922.4700
Paducah, KY 270.443.5712
Murray, KY 270.767.6397


PECS is the acronym for Picture Exchange Communication System. It is a low tech AAC (Alternative Augmentative Communication) system that is made from a small, portable binder, Velcro, and laminated visual icons. The visual icons are a collection of core vocabulary words and words that are important and familiar to the child. It is made up of 6 sequential stages that follow the same order of language development in children with typically developing language abilities. PECS is taught at increasing complexities and through many of the same principles as ABA (Applied Behavioral Analysis) therapy where communication behaviors are taught through a series or rewards. Before beginning PECS training, it is important to find what each child finds most rewarding. These preferred items are most typically favorite foods or favorite toys. The child’s preferred items are used as reinforcers in the beginning stages of PECS when learning that an exchange must happen to get the reinforcer, that the child must initiate that exchange, and discrimination between preferred items and non-preferred items. In the following stages, the child learns to expand their communication to request in sentences (ex. “I want the ball”), learns how to answer questions, and learns to comment. PECS offers an alternative way to promote functional communication and reduce communication breakdowns.



PECS was originally designed as an alternative form of communication for children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Many children with ASD exhibit echolalia, or frequent imitation of speech. In these instances, PECS teaches functional and meaningful communication rather than communicative messages that are imitated. For children with limited verbal output, PECS can be a great substitute for the individual to get their wants and needs met. It is also a great tool for children with traditional speech abilities but whom demonstrate difficulty with social exchanges, initiation, and answering questions for communicative purposes. PECS can serve as a visual support to aid in expanding utterance length.  Although PECS was originally created for children with ASD, it has since expanded and is recognized as a successful means of communication for children with a wide variety of speech and language impairments.



On the contrary! More and more research is suggesting that PECS can aid in helping children with communication impairments develop traditional speech at faster rate. For many children, PECS can be a precursor to speech and act as an extra visual support to assist with development of traditional speech. For some children, verbal output is sometimes too difficult, and outside the range of their abilities. For these children, PECS can be a precursor to a higher tech AAC device (i.e. iPad, Dynavox, Speakeasy, etc.). If you think your child could benefit from PECS, ask your local Speech-Language Pathologist today!







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