Monday, April 21, 2014

We're Going to the Zoo! {Giveaway!}

This post contains Amazon Affiliate links for your convenience.
It's that time of year where most of my younger kids are taking field trips to the zoo. They are super pumped about it, so why not tie in some zoo life into your therapy sessions?
A few months ago, we took our daughter to the zoo. It was so much fun seeing her expressions as she got to see and touch (with a lot of hand sanitizer) so many animals! 
A trip to the zoo can really bring out some major language opportunities. For example, before you go, have the kids predict what they will see. Show them a map and maybe google image some picture of animals that live at the zoo. While you're there, ask them what they see, hear, and smell- although that can be a loaded question if you are anywhere near the elephants! Days following your trip, have them recall what they saw, who they were with, and what their favorite part was. 
Every time I am given the opportunity to jump on a classroom's thematic unit train, I do it. Kids learn the best when they see the material in multiple settings and with many exposures, so why not bring it into the therapy room too? The zoo unit may be one of my favorites. A few weeks before the field trip, I like to bring out some zoo themed books. There are so many great zoo books out there but these are a few of my favorites:
Since I was spending so much time teaching about the zoo, of course I created a thematic unit of speech and language activities to go with it! This packet is full of activities that target: vocabulary, patterns, comparing & contrasting, articulation, and writing... just to name a few! There are also some open-ended activities included that you can use to target any goal desired!
What's a thematic unit with out a matching homework packet? I've got you covered!
You can download these activities in my TpT store here, or enter to win a copy below!!





Saturday, April 19, 2014

Preposition Remix App Review & Giveaway!

APPy Saturday! I hope you all had a great week and are ready for a great Easter weekend with your loved ones! Recently, the creative people from Smarty Ears contacted me about doing an app review on their app,  Preposition Remix. I seem to always have at least one student working on prepositions on my caseload so I was very excited about a new way to work on this skill. 
Smarty Ears did provide me with a free copy of the app, however, all opinions expressed in this review are mine. 
To get started, first add and/or choose a player! This app allows for one player to use the app at a time. 
You are also able to choose settings based on individual need for the student you are working with. If you are currently only targeting the prepositions: inside & outside, you can simply choose those two from the list. 
Once you are ready to start, hit Go! The student is shown a picture and given an auditory prepositional prompt. He/she is to touch the correct item described. 
"Touch the object to the right of the basket."

Once the students has completed the desired number of targets, you can view their report card. This report card can be shared and emailed to parents and/or teachers!
I love that this app allows you to choose individual settings for the student you are working with. In addition to choosing what prepositions you want to target, I like that you can choose how the app reacts to a wrong answer. If I am using this app as an informal assessment/ progress monitoring tool, I don't want the app to make a buzzing noise, just move on to the next prompt!
I also love that the app keeps track of the student's data and allows you to share report cards!
As a private therapist, the single player feature is perfect for me. However, this is not always the best option for a school based therapist that often works with more than once child at a time. 
Preposition Remix currently sells for $9.99. You can download a copy of this app in the iTunes store here.
Feeling lucky? The wonderful people from Smarty Ears kindly offered a second app code so I could share this app with one of you! Enter below for a chance to win a copy of Preposition Remix!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Spring & Easter Speech Craftivities!

I love craftivities in therapy just about as much as I love stories in therapy (and that is a lot!) It's amazing how much coloring, cutting, and glueing can spark up language in a child! In addition, these craftivities we make in therapy help connect parents with what we are learning about and provides great opportunity for carryover at home! I wanted to share a few of my go-to favorites for this time of year!
First up is an Easter Egg Speech Wreath! 
To make this, I used construction paper for the eggs and a paper plate with the middle cut out for the wreath (fancy schmancy!) I offered colorful paper eggs, but this student wanted to customize each egg! Then, we wrote target articulation words on each egg. Great decoration and even better speech homework!
The picture above is of easter eggs hiding in the grass! I did a similar activity to this when using the story In the Tall, Tall Grass last year. I recently saw Jenn from Crazy Speech World hid eggs in the grass instead of critters and decided this would be fun to make! To create this masterpiece I used construction paper and target words from Mommy Speech Therapy's worksheets. 

Speech-er-Pillar!
I should take stock out in construction paper. We created this little guy after reading The Very Hungry Caterpillar. 
Last but not least.... Speech Flowers!
I think this is my favorite spring craftivity. My speech room looked so colorful after I hung these up! I used paint chips from Home Depot and left over tissue paper squares that I had from another craft. The kids wrote their target words in the petals!
I hope you have a wonderful Easter weekend with your loved ones!!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Simply Speech Easter Sale!!

We are only one week away from Easter! That means only 1 week left to get all your fun Easter themed activities squeezed into therapy! Need some help? No problem... I have some ideas.... and they are all on sale!! That's right. All of my Easter themed activities are 20% off today!!
First we have Speech With My Peeps! This is an open-ended game (with an adorable Easter theme) to use to target any speech and language goal! Print as many copies of the points/bonus cards as you wish. After your student(s) practice a target, have them choose a card from the pile. They either are awarded points, an extra turn, the game order is reversed, or they lose a turn. This is an great way to spice up "skill and drill" therapy!! Also included in this packet is a game board and blank bunny cards so you can create your own based on student need!
You can download a copy here!
Need some quick print and go homework sheets for this holiday season? This packet includes 10 adorable Spring and Easter themed homework coloring sheets. There are blanks provided for you or your students to write in their own targets to take home and practice. 
You can download a copy here!
My students love the old lady books so I could not resist making a companion for this one! This book companion includes a ton of speech and language activities: sequencing, vocabulary, spatial skills, articulation, compare and contrast, etc!
You can download a copy here!
And while you're there...don't forget to download my Old Lady Chick Homework FREEBIE!!
Hoppy Easter friends!!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Show Your Jammin Spirit for Autism Awareness Month! {Giveaway}

April is Autism Awareness Month! What is a better way to show your spirit all month long than with festive nails?! 
As many of you know, I am a Jamberry Independent Consultant as well as an SLP! Did you know that Jamberry contributes $2 from every sale of Autism wraps to The Autism Society of America? They do! And I wanted to share the love with you all. Enter below to win a half sheet of Autism nail wraps!! I will announce 2 winners on Monday!!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Speech With The Very Hungry Caterpillar!

This post contains Amazon Affiliate links for your convience!
Spring has sprung! I love this time of year and I love all of the "springy" themed books and activities that can be used in therapy! If you missed my post a few weeks ago, I shared some spring time favorites! You can check that out here. One of my favorites to use this time of year is The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.
This classic story is perfect to teach all about growing and changing! What's even better is when we can throw some speech and language goals in the mix! 
One of my favorite activities to use for story sequencing goals is a "story in a bag!" I found some story cards on Pinterest (they are everywhere- just search "the very hungry caterpillar sequencing.") I decided to use black and white pictures so the kids can color them and personalize their story bag!

After they were finished coloring, we cut them apart and numbered them. Since they are numbered, the kids have an easier time retelling the story in the correct sequence. I love sending these bags home for homework. The kids love sharing their bags with their family and I love extra practice at home!
Let me introduce our Speech-a-Pillars!! I cannot take credit for these, I saw tons of similar ones floating around Pinterest... but aren't they cute? I pre-cut the circles and target words (simply to save time) and let the kids have fun creating their caterpillars. I printed the words from the Mommy Speech Therapy blog.
What's your favorite spring time activity?

Monday, March 31, 2014

iName It {App Review and Giveaway!}

APPy Monday! I hope you all had a great weekend! Here, we are just getting back to the real world after Spring Break! That can be tough, so why not make Monday a little better with a giveaway?! Recently, the creative people from Smarty Ears contacted me about doing an app review on their app,  iName It. 
Smarty Ears did provide me with a free copy of the app, however, all opinions expressed in this review are mine. 
iName it is an app designed by a speech language pathologist for those with word finding difficulties. The app is designed for adults but is age appropriate for kids and adolescents as well. To get started, first choose your user. This app allows for one user at a time. 
Next, choose the room that you want to target. iName It contains 50 nouns that are commonly found around the home. 
Once a room is chosen, the user is presented with a picture of a room filled with common items.The targeted items for that room are pictured at the bottom of the screen. Choose an item by touching it. The rest of the room goes grey and only the item chosen it highlighted. The user is then to name the item. If he/she correctly names the item, they receive a check. If he/she does not, touch the blue circle on the screen. The user will then be prompted with assistance cues. 
The first cue option is a written cue (pencil icon) The patient is presented with the first few letters of the word. 

The next cue is a definition of the word. 

The third cue option is a sentence frame. 
There is also a phonetic cue where the patient can hear the initial part of the word. And last but not least, the patient can be presented with the word. 
 The app also collects and stores data!
I currently work with preschool and school age students. Even though this app was designed for adults with Aphasia, so many of my students' goals were coming to mind as I was trying out this app: vocabulary, describing, categories, life skills, articulation, and answering WH questions... just to name a few! Smarty Ears has done it again and created another wonderful, versatile app that is great for all ages. 
To get more information about the app, you can watch a video here.
iName It currently sells for $14.99. You can download a copy of this app in the iTunes store here
Feeling lucky? The wonderful people from Smarty Ears kindly offered a second app code so I could share this app with one of you! Enter below for a chance to win a copy of iName It!