Why Choose RPM?

There are other programs that are letterboard or typing-based. You may even have seen copies of Soma®RPM's stencils and letterboards, as well as some of the language and technique of RPM.

​Parents often ask why should they consider using the original Soma®RPM.

Some important items to consider:

  • RPM is constantly evolving; in just the past few years, Soma has published several new guidebooks with techniques on how to further a student's skills (e.g., self-care, reading).​

  • RPM is not just centered on using a letterboard. It is a full program that works on everything a student needs to progress in life, whether it be participating in hobbies or being able to verbalize answers.


  • RPM's focus on a student's open learning channels is paramount to a student's success. For instance, a visual learner needs to see the keywords of a lesson, the tactile learner may react to something drawn on his/her hand.  Other programs rely only on the student auditory learning channel by reading the student large paragraphs of information at a time. RPM teachers are trained to adapt to a student's auditory, visual, tactile and kinesthetic channels, knowing that even within a session the open channels can change quickly. Over time, teachers also work on developing those channels that are more difficult for a student to use.

  • RPM lessons also include sensory activities. Teachers might engage the student through interesting voices, paper models, or looking at a drawing together. A lesson in RPM is so much more than reading text and asking questions. Sensory activities the student's interest, prevent fatigue and help build a tolerance.


  • The rhythm between student-teacher is very important in RPM. Other programs may use large paragraphs of information followed by testing the child on the information through multiple, often overly-challenging questions. RPM sessions are structured to be a friendly back-and-forth exchange between the teacher and student. Questions and activities in the lesson are formatted to work on the goals of the session. The teacher will at a moment's notice modify any question or activity based upon the child's open learning channel, tolerance, etc. This rhythmic exchange is vital to the success of the lesson. 

  • RPM commits to working with any child, regardless of "behaviors" or challenges. RPM training of teachers involves techniques (like scrambling and diluting) to deal with a wide range of issues: stimming, OCD, etc.