Inspirations for therapists & parents 

Gplus E-mail
Gplus E-mail
formats

What’s in my cart? LINKY PARTY- TPT Teacher Appreciation Sale!

whatsinyourcartlinky2Jenna over at Speech Room News is hosting her fun “What’s in your cart? Linky Party” before the big teachers pay teachers sale!  The Teacher Appreciation sale is May 5-6 and you can get up to 28% off all products with the COUPON CODE: Thank you.  I know it is the end of the year, but this is a perfect to snatch up some goodies that you can prep over summer to have ready at the start of the new year!  SLP’s in my district have an extended contract beyond the school year, so I am going to be prepping and organizing my materials and room as well as do all the fun PAPERWORK!

Head over to Speech Room News to see what everyone is stocking up on!

My assignment is changing next year…..I am going back to elementary with a sprinkling of preschool next year.  I have mixed emotions because those knuckle head middle schoolers actually grew on me.  I know I will be heading back over to that age level later in my life, but for now, I want HUGS and “we love speech” every day. Quite frankly, I love puppets, singing Raffi and playing with play dough. Most of my new purchases will be stocking up for my new assignment!

Here are some new additions from my store:

Interactive FLIPBOOK:  Making Social Inferences

Interactive FLIPBOOK for Making Social Inferences is perfect for your crowd working on social perspective.  Just laminate and use with a dry erase marker (it’s a magical tool that any middle schooler loves).

flipbooksMy newest interactive flipbooks have been such a hit with my students!  I just laminate, hole punch and clip together with binder rings.  Use a dry erase marker and get in TONS of articulation practice. I even made a VERB book as well. You can grab S,L,R-blends flipbooks, s,z flipbooks,  f,v flipbooks,Final Consonant Deletion Flipbooks, K,G flipbooks, SH, CH, DJ flipbooks, R- initial & R-blends flipbooks, and All about Verbs flipbooks.

That said, my cart is FILLED with preschool/elementary level goodies.  Here is what I have to buy:

Grab N' Go Action Words

I love Live Love Speech’s newest grab n’ go series!  I need more Grab N’ Go Action activities for my little ones, so this will be perfect.  Planning on prepping this at the end of the year! It has visuals and it is interactive because you can use magnetic chips or bingo markers with it!!

ROCK ‘N’ ROLL ARTICULATION BUNDLE - S R L and TH 3720 word

I have several /r/ students at my charter elementary and I know I will have more s,l, & th next year, so I had to snag this from Rock N’ Roll Articulation BUNDLE /s,r,l th/.

Grammar Clips

I love how interactive this set is from The Speech Bubble SLP.  Always have little ones working on grammar, so I am snagging Grammar Clips to add to my stash!  I have a bunch of clothes pins from the dollar store that I will use.

Story in a Can: A DIY for Narratives!

Love this product from Busy Bee Speech.  Looking forward to using Story In A Can next year in therapy as well as a dynamic assessment or progress monitoring tool for oral narration.

Fast Pace Race: Articulation Challenge for S and Z

I love challenges and this is the perfect addition to my artic stash!  Fast Pace Race Articulation Challenge for s,z from Small Talk SLP is perfect for kids competing against themselves and will help with carryove

What’s in your cart for the BIG sale? Head over to Speech Room News to see what lots of other bloggers are planning to buy!! (400)

formats

Chicken Soup For The SLP SOUL: Funny Edition LINKY PARTY!!

chicken soup graphics linky partyMay is Better Speech and Hearing Month! Time to celebrate our profession and share with others about what we do on a daily basis.  Since the Chicken Soup for the SLP soul was a gigantic hit, I decided I needed to plan another fun chicken soup story adventure.   I loooooooovvveeeee me a funny SLP story.  That’s why I planned this fun linky party, so you can read MANY funny SLP stories from the field.

To participate, just write a blog post with your crazy, hilarious SLP moment, add my graphic in your blog post and link up at the bottom of the post!

Now….time to tell ONE of  my most recent SLP stories working at the middle school.

It’s the middle of the school year and I am feeling quite comfortable with my middle school students.  The incentives have worked and now we all have a connection (I give all credit to hot cheetos and youtube). Imagine me doing therapy with two middle school aged boys.  One working on fluency strategies and the other a hard of hearing (HOH) young man working on /sh,ch,s,z/.

At the beginning of the session  I usually do a “check in”, “hey, how’s it going?”, “yes, this is happening….we are going to practice speech today” and “yes, you will probably have to read something” kind of thing happening.  At some point in the conversation, the topic veers off into teenager land (this often happens in my room) and it’s all talk about the fight that happened earlier in the day.

As I am trying to reel them back in, I hear my HOH student say something like “I would have said BISH back off me.”  He meant to say “bitch”.  No sooner had he said, when out pops from my mouth “If you are going to say THAT word, at least say it with a good CH (we had been practicing that sound for weeks now).”

My students says “You mean bitCH.”

“Yes, THANK YOU,” I exclaim with a slight tone of annoyance.  oh dear, I just allowed my student to say “bitch” IN my therapy room………. “What is wrong with you Felice!?”…..”You are definitely turning into a teenager, no  filter”….”What if his auntie gets mad”….the list of anxious thoughts continued to flood my brain.  Not to mention that my face reeked with that guilty “oops” facial expression.  My two boys started laughing and calling me out for my bad behavior.  I of course, chuckled and then apologized.  It was an accident!

This was clearly a lesson of me trying to show my students that NO MATTER what word they wanted to say, it must be with concise speech sounds, so that all listening partners could understand the whole message.  That’s my motto and I’m stickin’ to it (but please, don’t tell anyone that I did that)!!

Alrighty, I would love to hear your FUNNY SLP stories.  Link up below and share a funny memory that happened to you in grad school or out in the field as an SLP.


(572)

formats

Things you can do during better speech and hearing month

better speech and hearing month

Better Speech & Hearing Month is in May!  It’s always fun to draw more awareness to our field and let people know a little bit more about we do every day!  I gathered up some ideas you can share our field with other professionals, family members and friends.  Some of my ideas could also be a way to let your fellow SLP’s know that you appreciate their support throughout the year.

bookmark 21.  Make DIY speechie bookmarks for your SLP buddies!  Grab my free DIY template HERE!

Better Speech and Hearing Month Awareness Packet - Freebie

2.  Decorate your staff lounge with information about what SLP’s do, tips for promoting speech and hearing in the classroom and how to protect your hearing with Natalie Snyders FREEBIE Awareness Packet.

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-3v-jKddW2zs/VLKxHDGCnDI/AAAAAAAAA5g/EbaTa21Grvg/s1600/Screen%2BShot%2B2015-01-11%2Bat%2B9.20.48%2BAM.png

3.  Give a presentation to your staff about “saving your voice” in the classroom.  The Queen’s Speech has a lot of great tips to make a quick presentation!  This is also a great time of year to do a little talk about what we do and the process to access speech services for students.

2015-03-07 10.45.43

4.  Wear some fun SLP t-shirts from The Peachie Speechie to work all month! This is my hubby, Avery tearing out our old kitchen. He is wearing a sweatshirt that I bought him from the website!!  He told me people always ask him “what’s an SLP?”   Pretty sure people are mostly allured by the “smokin’ hot” part lol……

DIY decor magnets

5.  Make some DIY SPEECHY magnets to give to your co-workers, friends and other speechies to show your love for our field!  Check out how to make these magnets HERE!

6. I use different speech therapy groups on facebook to ask questions about assessment, therapy treatment plans and resources for materials!  You can join these groups too! It is a wonderful resource and there are SLP’s all over the place to give you their expert advice or validate your trials as an SLP.  Anyways…..Jill Schorr (fabulous SLP) shared her fun idea in the group about doing a speech and language quiz with her school staff. Grab her quiz with all the answers here!! Whoever has the most right can win a prize!  You can always customize the quiz to things you know like developmental norms, name what areas an SLP treats, how many sounds are in the word tongue and fun facts about different disorders.

I am pretty excited about next month because I have some fun things planned for you!  I also get to go to Sacramento’s triple A baseball team’s Better Speech & Hearing night and invite a couple of families to join me.  Our California Speech & Hearing Association for the Northern California area is hosting.  I have gone the past two years and it is always an awesome time.  What do you do to celebrate Better Speech & Hearing Month?

  (1723)

formats

Ideas For Therapy: Using Little Red Cups

how would you use it little red cupsIt’s been a few months since I did my “How would YOU use it?” GIVEAWAY.  Well, I am back this month with a new item to share.  These “little red cups” were a hit especially with my…wait for it….middle school students. Since SLP’s think so creatively, I want to know YOUR ideas for how to incorporate these cups into therapy.  A dabbling girl like me always needs more tricks to add to her bag, so please enter and comment at the end of this post with your idea. You will be entered for a chance to win a set of these fun “little red cups” for your therapy room!  Woot!!

little red cups

I found these little red cups at Safeway when I was shopping for food and went home to see if they had these on amazon. They did!! Amazon affiliate link is provided in case you want to snag some for your therapy room.

Of course, I instantly thought these would be great for building towers with my little articulation kiddos over at my elementary site.  Each time they said their speech sound in words/sentences, they could earn a cup to build a giant tower.  Then, at the end, they get to destroy it!

 

little red cups minute to win it

With my middle school crowd, I decided to use these with my social skill lunch bunch groups and my life skills students.  After we did a social skill warm up type of activity, I pulled out the cups!  They had to stack them all in a pyramid tower and then put them all back in one tall stack in a minute or less.  I could do it in 25 seconds, so I figured this was hard, but not too hard to achieve.  It was a hit!  Initiation and comments were flying back and forth my speech room without ANY prompting.  My one middle school student who prefers to be alone, tells me he never wants to be here and says “he doesn’t think about people, so why should he have to think about me” was SMILING, LAUGHING and wanted to participate.  It was amazing.

As a group we talked about how to make comments that are encouraging the person trying to beat the challenge.  We also talked about the hidden rules for what the people should do while watching the person doing the challenge.  If a student didn’t win the challenge, we talked about positive comments we could say to them. All in all, it was a fun activity to do at the end of the year when kids become a little more rowdy and less motivated in speech.

Now it’s your turn……….

I wanted to give a stack of these away to one of you!!  To enter my little giveaway, comment below with YOUR therapy idea for how you would use these “little red cups” with your students.  Be creative!  I need more ideas!! (828)

formats

News-O-Matic: App Review (My FAVORITIST app Ever)!

news o matic

Today, I am going to share one of my MOST favorite apps out there!  It’s called News O’ Matic.  This app is basically an interactive newspaper that is kid friendly and filled with articles about current events.  This app has SAVED me tons of time in terms of prep work. Not to mention, my middle schoolers enjoy it, and we are covering lots of great language using this app.  The app creators write 5 articles a day and there are videos, pictures, selected vocabulary with definitions from the article and lots more!

Here is a youtube video to see what the app looks like and what is featured each day.  You can also go on Press4kids to get more information and ask questions about this app and how to use it with your students and/or classroom.

Quoted from this article News-O-Matic “features five daily stories, each reviewed by an on-staff psychologist to ensure safety, covering national and international news, sports, arts, science and more. The app is designed to encourage students to engage with the stories through drawings, writing, voting for their favorite articles and asking interview questions of politicians, athletes and others.”

news o matic guideOnce you are registered with your app, the new-o-matics folks email you weekly with a guide for the articles for the week.  They include comprehension questions with choices and graphic organizers to work on different concepts.  This week it is working on finding details from the text.

news o matic extra funThere are daily games that can be played, an area where students can draw picture from one of the articles and they can also write in to New-o-matic with an opinion or share why they like the app!

Why I love this app:

  • It is updated every day with new articles and content, so I have new therapy materials every day.
  • This app has a wide variety of topics that appeal to all my students interests.  It gives the student’s a choice for which article they want to read.
  • This app already has vocabulary highlighted from the text with definitions, so you don’t have to prep finding word definitions in the article.
  • I am emailed weekly with a teacher’s guide including comprehension questions I could ask the students.
  • This app is colorful, uses real photos and contains videos on many of the articles, so your lesson can be easily adapted and scaffolded for your visual learners.
  • This app has the capability of the student reading to themselves or you can have the text read out loud if reading fluency is an issue.
  • There are 5 articles on one day, so my student’s have a choice for what they want to learn about.  The students are more motivated to learn about things that interest them.
  • The articles can be used to target articulation, speech fluency, vocabulary, comprehension, grammar, summarizing,etc.
  • You can adjust the reading level to fit your student’s needs, which is pretty cool.
  • There is a drawing section in which the student can draw a picture.  This is a great way for students to work on visualizing.  They can draw a picture to help them remember the new vocabulary words they learned, the main idea of the article or what the article made them feel/think.
  • The use of non-fiction text is very much common core aligned, so this would match up with lots of your goals (wh-question, main idea, summarizing, cause/effect).
  • I learn stuff too!! I get to stay up-to-date right along side my students and learn about things that I might not have caught in a “grown up” article.

Considerations:

  • You need internet connection, so if you do not have access to wifi in your room, then you will have trouble gaining access to this app.
  • This is a free app to access some of the articles, but you have to pay the subscription fee to get ALL the features of the app.  You also have to buy the app every year to get all the features.
  • The articles are reviewed by a psychologist before they are put on the app, but some of the topics or news stories could be sensitive to your students based on their cultural beliefs.  Always a good idea to preview the articles before discussing in a group or class if possible.

I am still learning more about this app and how I can incorporate it in the therapy.  This is one of my go-to materials for therapy when I have mixed language groups or if my students are really not thrilled with my lesson.  All in all, this is definitely a MUST HAVE for any SLP, especially those that have high caseloads, travel to multiple sites or work with upper elementary/middle school/high school level students.

Grab the school edition on itunes and get a full year subscription for $9.99. (607)

formats

Monday’s Motto: It’s all about the LITTLE humans

monday's motto little humansMy Monday’s Motto is all about those “Little Humans” we serve day in and day out (yes, middle school and high school students are still little humans). A few weeks ago, my charter elementary site had a teacher development day and they showed us this video! (amazon affiliate links included).

After seeing the video, I NEEDED to have that book for myself because I loved the photos and the message that it shared. Sometimes as educators, and parents we forget that our “little humans” we teach and care for are growing and achieving awesome things every day.  Sometimes it’s hard to see the “small” accomplishments they have made.  As adults, it can be hard to see the forest through the trees when we, ourselves are bombarded with all the stresses “life” can bring.  I have those days when I can barely take care of my own setbacks, let alone my “little humans” trials.

“Little Humans” can do BIG things and we have the great privilege to walk along side them as they develop their own personalities, character, skills and purpose for this life.  We get to see them fail, show love, laugh, cry, succeed, learn and teach.  Sometimes going through the process with them is one tough, scary ride, but the positive results always make it worthwhile.  I have just finished my spring break and I needed this reminder for the week that my BEST me needs to shine through till the end of the year.  I especially need to save that extra BEST me for my “little humans” at home.  When my energies are spent bringing love and positive feelings, all is better in the world.  Some of the most effective medicine for me is when I see one of my “little humans” smiling and laughing.  It just brightens my day and helps me to push forward.

I challenge you this week to take some time to reflect how you have changed a “little humans” life in a SMALL BUT MIGHTY WAY! (more…) (263)

formats

Making Social Inferences Interactive Flipbook!

making inferences interactive flipbook coverI have had several initial and triennial assessments this year at the middle school that have had a large emphasis on social pragmatics.  I have been giving the Social Language Development Test-Adolescent from Linguisystems to get a more in depth look at the student’s interpretations of social interactions.  You have to give the WHOLE test (no ceilings), so it is a bit time consuming.  For my higher functioning students on the Autism Spectrum, this test really helps expose the significant challenges they have with interpreting social cues and interacting with peers.

A few of my students in particular struggled significantly with taking the perspective of another person on the subtest: Making Inferences.  They were given a photo of a person and asked to look at the clues in the picture and make a guess at what might they be thinking?  The student must comment as the character or person in the photo.  The second part of the assessment asks them to explain the clues that helped them come up with the inference. You can imagine the types of answers I got on this assessment.  One student did not respond in 1st person and could only make “thoughts” in the third person.  For example, a lot of the students responses looked like this “He is thinking he is bored.” Another student didn’t understand WHY we had to do this in the first place because the people in the photos were not real and didn’t have thoughts because they were just pictures (ended up not giving the full test due to validity on that one).

When I asked the students explain why they thought the person was thinking that thought, many of my students either said “I don’t know” or gave very vague details to verify their answers.  Needless to say, I discovered an area of need and needed materials to help improve my student’s abilities to make “social inferences”.  If our student’s struggle with making inferences from photos and social situations, I can only imagine what bits of information they are missing in stories, commercials, sitcoms and movies!

My middle schoolers LOVE dry erase markers, so I thought I would make my latest interactive flipbook for them!

Grab my Social Inferences FLIPBOOK in my TPT store!

making social inferences 2Print all the pages onto white cardstock and laminate.  Punch holes in each of the cards and connect with binder rings. Then, have students use a dry erase marker to document their answers in the book!

I bought mine off of amazon (affiliate link included for your convenience) and they have been very handy for all of my interactive books and flashcards that I have been making.

making social inferences

There are 27 photos in the book.  Next to each photo, is a space to write what the person may be thinking and then a spot to cite evidence.  With some of my students, I had to do some of the photos with them and explicitly show them what to look for in the picture.  I used lots of visuals to show that in my brain, I collect clues in order to make a smart guess.

Once they get the hang of it, I think these books is perfect for mixed groups when you have some language and pragmatic kiddos together.  So far, several of my students who say “I don’t know” A LOT, are beginning to make some gains with this skill.  I try to really praise them during the scaffolding part because they get really down when they don’t get the answer correct. I made this activity for my middle school students, but I think this activity could be scaffolded to fit 2nd/3rd graders to work on beginning inferencing and prediction skills.  What do you think?  How to do you target perspective taking with your older students? (1308)

formats

Two Facts & a Fib Blog Hop: The Fib Revealed

11074093_10206488553796333_9100415952575238933_nIt was super fun reading through all the blogs and making “smart guesses” about each person’s fib!  Now, it’s time to reveal my FIB.

A.  I played rugby in college for 2 years.  The second year we went to the national championships. FACT! I played on the Sac State Rugby for two years.  I went out for try outs and was able to join the team because they pretty much took everyone who came out!  I was a lock in the scrum because I have long, strong legs.  It was a great experience!

B.  In grad school, I participated in a Flash Mob Dance at the mall.  It was a lot of time to prep, but something I will always remember doing. FIB! I wish I could say this one was a fact, but I never participated in a Flash Mob.  Definitely on my bucket list!

C.  My Aunt was in the famous Seinfeld episode when George pretended to be a marine biologist to impress a lady he started dating (my aunt was George’s love interest). FACT!  My Uncle met his wife at my cousin’s high school.  My now Aunt is the performing arts teacher at a well known christian high school in Los Angeles and puts on fabulous plays/musicals each year at the school.  In her earlier acting years, she landed some great acting roles including playing George’s girlfriend on Seinfeld! 

Here is a clip from the actual episode!  Hope you all had fun with this blog hop.  It was sure fun “fooling” some of you! (176)

formats

File Folder Activities Using My Print N’ Go Packs!

file folder activities no prepI love my no prep packs because it requires little to no prep, can be colored to help extend the activity and then sent home for home practice!  Sometimes, I want to use the same activity over again as review or to see if they made progress with the skill in another session.  Making file folder activities are perfect for when you have mixed groups (artic and language), so you can cover everyone’s goals.  All you need are empty file folders, a laminator (I used my school’s big one), velcro and any activity that you want to use!

This file folder activity comes from my Springtime Themed No Prep Speech and Language Activities Pack. It is filled with low prep and print n’ go activities that can easily be used as homework and therapy activities.  I glued the kids on the file folder and laminated the whole folder.  Then, I added velcro to the empty boxes and all the stimulus items and da ta…file folder activity ready!spring print and go file folderNormally, I have the students color the items and cut n’ glue onto the paper and take home with them.  This is great for home practice, but then I was only able to use the activity one time.  I have a prek kiddo that is working on noun-verb agreement and building vocabulary, so I wanted him to practice a little bit with a “drill” type of warm up. I love how this activity keeps my little one engaged while I do some artic “drill” with my two other students.

story sequence file folderGrab my Sequencing Activities for the Whole Year and create your own file folder activities for sequencing.

silly sentence  sequencing blog picThese are my silly scrambled sentences.  It makes for a great warm up or as an activity center.  I am in the process of making some more file folder activities from my Soaking Up Summer With Speech & Language No Prep Summer Pack and Blooming Into Speech & Language No Prep Pack.  These definitely takes more time to prep, but I can tuck the folder away for next year without having to prep all over again! What are some of your favorite file folder activities that you use in therapy? (995)

formats

Paper, Pencil & Paperclip CHALLENGE Linky Party!

paper and pencil challengeAnyone have a professor in graduate school tell you that you should be able to therapy with a paper and pencil??  If you can’t do therapy with those two things, then you are too dependent on therapy materials.  I remember one professor in particular beating it into my brain that I am the therapist with ALL the knowledge about how to treat my students speech and language needs, not the cool therapy toy that requires batteries and makes fun noises when you push a button.  Therapy materials are just tools to help build speech and language skills!

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE finding new therapy materials and would be pulling my hair out if I didn’t have my Super Duper and Linguisystems products.  The point is this…there are situations when we don’t always have time to get the perfect therapy session “prepped” and ready to go!  IEP meetings, reports, paperwork and a large caseload create some obstacles for planning therapy.  For you private practice folks, during the day, you are go, go, go.  Just as  one client leaves, you get 5-10 minutes to prep for the next! Not much time.  Not to mention all the little speechies that say “heck no” to your PLANNED therapy activity!  You have to think on the fly sometimes as an SLP! In the long run, improvising makes you a better, more skilled therapist. During those times unplanned times or limited resources, you discover new ways to use a toy or material and learn more about your student/clients interests.

ready for the challenge

Join me in this CHALLENGE and share a therapy idea using only a pencil, paper, and/or paper clip!  For those of you that work with the teeny tinies, you can substitute an item that doesn’t have a sharp edge, preferably something you would find around the house like a toilet paper roll or empty box.

Add the graphic at the top to your blog post and link it up here at the bottom of this post to participate!  Are you ready for my therapy idea!?

My middle schoolers have been working on interpreting figurative language and making inferences because that is what they are working on right now in their Language Arts class.  I decided that I was going to have them make Idiom fans with weather related expressions for my challenge lesson.

idiom fansThey had to write the idiom expression on one side and then the meaning on the other side of the fan.  I had a couple of markers in my pencil tin, so one girl did sneak some color onto her fan.  After they made their fans, we reviewed the expressions and I quizzed them on the meanings.  All in all, I didn’t have complaints with the activity and folding the paper added a little more interaction to the activity.  I could totally see synonym and antonym fans in the works for a later session!!

I am super excited to see what other SLP’s come up with!  Coming up with creative therapy ideas with limited materials is an art!

(968)

CyberChimps gives you the tools to turn WordPress into a modern feature rich Content Management System (CMS)