Love It & List It Linky: Articulation Apps

Friday, November 29, 2013
Happy Black Friday! Have you been out shopping since last night or are you like me... still in my pajamas staying far away from the madness?! I am a little late to link up with Jenna from SRN but this was a linky I really wanted to participate in. I am always looking for good articulation materials.... if they are on the iPad, even better!
I have a few "go-to" speech apps. Each of them are used for different reasons. 
There are two apps that I always use for good ole' skill and drill data collection purposes, Articulate It by Smarty Ears and Articulation Station by Little Bee Speech.
Articulate It includes flashcards of target words for your students to imitate. What I really like about this app is that you can have your students practice their targets in words, phrases, and/ or sentences. Another feature that I like about this app is that you can choose target words by number of syllables, phonological processes, and manner of articulation- in addition to target phonemes. 
Articulation Station is another great app I love to use for data collection. As you can see, I did not download the Pro Version. I chose to individually purchase the sounds I needed (a feature this app offers.)  For some people that is a bonus feature for others, it is more cost effective to download the Pro Version. This app allows your students to practice target sounds at the word, sentence, or story level (great for older students practicing carryover)
Speech Stickers is one of my favorite apps to use with students that have apraxia or other motor speech disorders. This app offers phonemes and/or phoneme combinations for students to practice as they earn stickers. I recently did a review on this app. To read my review and learn more about this app, click here. If you check it out before Sunday, you can enter to win a copy!
A speech app favorite for my students' is, Articulation Scenes by Smarty Ears! I like to use this app for more laid back, fun therapy sessions. My students love finding the hidden items in the scenes. They are still practicing target words, but they are playing a game and having fun while doing it.
Listen Close Articulation is my newest favorite app by Erik X Raj. This app is like the speech version of the game Simon. Students have to remember word combinations and repeat them back. It is so much fun! Not gonna to lie... I played it for like 30 minutes the other night trying to beat my own score! Many articulation apps are quite pricy.... this app is only $4.99 in the iTunes store!

I had a lot of fun reading all the other Love It & List It articulation linkys. I love learning about new apps and finding out what other therapists use in their speech sessions. To read all the other linky participant posts, click on the Love It & List It icon at the top of the page. 
Happy Speeching!

In My APPinion: Speech Stickers! {Giveaway}

Wednesday, November 27, 2013
APPy Wednesday everyone... and Happy Thanksgiving Eve to you, too! I am very excited to share this app review with you today. Speech Stickers is an app that was designed with children with Autism and motor speech disorders, such as Apraxia, in mind. I learned about this app while browsing message forums in an SLP Facebook group I am in. Carol Fast is a fellow SLP and the creator of this app. She shared a review of this app in the group and it immediately sparked my interest. I have a 7 year old student that has Cerebral Palsy and Apraxia of Speech. I have been using the Kauffman program with her but was looking for something a little more interactive (and attention keeping) to use. Speech Stickers was and is exactly what I was looking for!
Above is the main screen you will see when you open the app. I love how colorful and inviting it is! If you select the options button, you will see the screen below. This page allows you to set how many trials the student will need to complete to receive their reinforcement as well as orientation settings. The key to motor speech disorder therapy is repetition, repetition, repetition. I like that this app gives you the option to change/choose how many trials the student needs to complete before their reinforcement is earned. Many students have short attention spans or simply are very young and need frequent feedback. This can be increased or decreased as time and progress goes on. 
After you have completed your settings, you can choose the phoneme to target. Unlike most articulation apps, this app breaks the sounds down into isolated phonemes and VC, VC combinations. Students are not directed to imitate whole words, but sounds/ sound combinations. 
Once you have selected the target phoneme, you can begin therapy! The app produces the sound you have chosen so the student can imitate it. I really enjoyed the fact that the phoneme is produced with different intonations and by different speakers for each trial. This way students are not imitating monotone or computer-like sounds. After each imitation attempt, the student is allowed choose a sticker and put it on the page. You are able to discreetly score the student by awarding them with a check or X for each attempt. The app does not make a sound as you score them (another feature I like.) 
After the student completes the assigned number of trials, they are able to choose a reinforcement. The reinforcement options include an animation of the stickers placed on the screen being removed by a rocket, dragon, shark, school bus, magic wand, shoe, bomb, bulldozer, or train! The screen shot below is of the balloons taking away a students stickers. They are then prompted with a fresh, blank background to decorate again!
What I LOVE about this app:
*It is clearly designed with motor speech disorders in mind. The average articulation apps do not work for children with Apraxia. I love that this app has so many phoneme isolation/combination options.
*The different voices/ intonation used for imitation trials. 
*To change a sound or to go back to the home page, you have to double tap the button. Not so easy for students to escape the app! (Although, I haven't had anyone try to escape yet :)
*You can set the number of trials before a reinforcement is earned. Each student has individual needs (and attention spans) Customizing is important. 

What I would like to see in the future:
*The only suggestion I would make for this app is the ability to save student data. Currently, I jot down the student's data for each trial period in a notebook. I would love it if I could save all of "Jaelyn's" data in a folder in the app. This way I could see the progress made since we started using the app all in one place. 

I highly recommend this app for anyone working with young students that have Autism or a motor speech disorder. You can learn more about this app and download a copy here. Speech Stickers is currently listed for $14.99 in the iTunes Store. Feeling lucky? Carol so kindly provided an extra code for one lucky Simply Speech reader! You can try to win a copy below. The winner will be announced Sunday. 
Happy Thanksgiving and good luck!

Auditory Processing Party! {Giveaway}

Monday, November 25, 2013
Happy Monday! Are you working this week or are you one of the lucky ones still in their pajamas reading this? Last year I was one of the lucky ones but this year is a little different. I wanted to share with you one of my newest activity packets. 
Not gonna lie, I am pretty excited about it!
There seems to be more and more children being identified with Auditory Processing Disorders and many more demonstrating characteristics of this disorder. Last week I shared my Operation Recall activity with you all and I am super excited to introduce a new AP game... Auditory Processing Party!
This activity is a fun "Popcorn Party" themed game that targets auditory processing skills. 
Here is how you play:
Print out one popcorn container for each student playing the game (they are pictured above). There is no limit on how many players can participate in the game. This makes it easy for one on one therapy or group therapy sessions!
A fun variation on this game would be using actual popcorn containers that you can find at the dollar store or glueing the popcorn container pictures to paper bags for the kids to fill!

Print and cut out popcorn pieces on page 4. Print multiple copies of this page. These pieces will be stored on the large full popcorn container (pictured below)  during the game. As students take turns answering questions from the cards, they earn a piece of popcorn for their own container.

The question cards are separated into 6 categories:  
Auditory Discrimination 
Phonological Blending 
Remembering Numbers 
Remembering Words 
 Use all the categories or just the ones your students need to practice. There are 2 pages of cards for each category.
I store the cards separately by category and use the title card on top of each deck for convince. 

Same and Different words included. 

Blending up to 6 sounds to create a word. 

Up to 7 number combinations included.

Up to 5 combinations of related and unrelated words are included. 

Take turns asking your students questions from the cards. As they answer the questions correctly, they get a piece of popcorn for their own container. The winner of the game has the most popcorn in their container at the end of your session!
You can download this activity here or try to win a copy below! If you would like to download it now, still enter the raffle. If you are my winner, you can choose another item from my store.
Good luck!!

In My APPinion: Pines to Vines- The Forest Biome

Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Appy Wednesday! I am very excited to share a new app with you all today. A few weeks ago, Kyle from Mobile Education Store contacted me about reviewing their new app, Pines to Vines- The Forest Biome. This app is a virtual science textbook... a teacher's (and students') dream come true! 
When you open the app, you are presented with the main menu (as pictured above.) 
The settings option lets you adjust the text size, set up your email address, the option to have the text read to you or not, background sound effects, etc.
If you choose read, you are brought to the textbook. I absolutely love how interactive this book is. The images on the right hand side change as you are reading so they match the text (great feature to aid comprehension!) In addition to images, there are videos and diagrams to enhance the students learning. There are also built in definitions. Vocabulary words are printed in blue. The student can tap on the word, hear the pronunciation, and read the definition. 

Want to hear something even cooler than that? You can also choose the reading level for each student. Talk about scaffolding!! Basically, you can have your ESE and advanced students all learning the same lesson, just at their own level. The levels range from Level 1(1st grade) to Level 5 (8th grade)
Major kudos to Mobile Ed Store for that feature!
Now here is where the app really takes textbooks and classwork to a whole new level. Students are able to take their chapter tests on the iPad and (wait for it....) email their answers to their teacher! 
There are a total of 30 chapter quizzes and 6 final tests.
This app was designed to help with comprehension while fostering the love of learning. I don't know a student that wouldn't want to engage in this "textbook." With all the emphasis on Common Core and nonfiction this year, this app is an amazing tool for therapists, tutors, parents, and teachers. 
For more information on this app, you can check out Mobile Education Store's website here.
You can download a copy of this app in the iTunes Store here!

10 Fat Turkeys! {FREEBIE!}

Monday, November 18, 2013
This post contains Amazon Affiliate links.
Gobble Gobble Wibble Wobble.... It's another week of Thanksgiving celebrations! 
This week, we are reading 10 Fat Turkeys by Tony Johnston
I love using holiday themes in therapy! This book is one of my favorite to use with Prek and kindergarten students. It gives a great opportunity to talk about numbers and practice number skills. Plus, the adorable illustrations in this book allows for a lot of language opportunities!
Normally, I write a post about the activities we do in therapy at the end of the week but since this is the final full week of work before Thanksgiving break, I wanted to get this post up now. I created some activities to go along with this story and because I am oh so thankful for you all, I am offering the packet for free! I hope you can use them this week (or keep them for next year!)
I have included 10 turkeys (there is a second page of turkeys) After you cut and laminate the turkeys, use them as visuals during the story. Start out with 10 and take one away as the story goes on. Have your kiddos practice counting the turkeys!
I also included an emergent reader/activity book to practice counting. The book goes up to #10
I love creating these little books in therapy. The kids love them too and it is a great activity to send home for extra practice with mom and dad. 
Use the turkeys below to complete the activity book. 
Below is a picture of one of my little munchkins completing her Ten Little Turkeys Book!
Last but not least, a counting worksheet. I am sending these home as homework along with some articulation words on my Thankful for Speech Homework coloring pages!
You can download this activity in my TpT store here! If you download a copy, please let me know and leave a comment or some feedback!

Friday Rewind! {Highlights From This Week}

Friday, November 15, 2013
Happy Friday! I hope you all had a great week. I am exhausted! I just got the baby to bed and I am unwinding from a very busy (but fun!) week. This evening, my fabulous co-workers and I threw a surprise baby shower for SLP momma to be, Tiffany! What's better than getting the girls together? Maybe spiked pink lemonade... check!
This week in speech, we read the book Bear Says Thanks by Karma Wilson
I love all the Bear books and this one gives great opportunity to tie in a Thanksgiving theme. One great thing about this book is that it doesn't have to be used only during Thanksgiving. The word "feast" is used in the story (great seasonal vocabulary word!) but the word Thanksgiving is not. 
We had a lot of fun using Jenn Alcorn's Bear Says Thanks Speech & Language activity pack. My favorite part of this packet is the comprehension questions, especially the ones with 2 answer choices. The visuals really help my little bitties answer comprehension questions about the story!
If you missed the post from yesterday, I posted a few new products I posted in my store this week along with announcing a 20% off SALE in honor of ASHA. You can check the post out here.
One of my newest items in the store is a Thanksgiving themed homework packet. The picture above is one of the sheets from the packet. You can check it out here!

I hope you all have a great weekend!! I'd love to hear what you were up to this week :)

Fave Fashion Friday {Linky Party!}

Happy Friday and welcome to the very first edition of Fave Fashion Friday! I am teaming up with Kate at Speech Room Style to bring you a monthly linky about a very popular topic... speechie style! I decided to start this linky series because speech room fashion is always a hot topic. I always feel like I need to dress professional, but I am working on the floor with 3 year olds for more than half my day. Seriously, yoga pants would be more efficient. But since that isn't really an option, I am always searching Pinterest and other blogs for fun, trendy, yet comfortable clothing options.
What better way to share then with a linky party?! 
To participate, write a new post about your favorite footwear and post it with the image below.
Then link your post at the bottom of the page!
This month's linky is all about shoes! Kate kicked us off this week with a guest post about ASHA footwear from Kim Lewis, author of Activity Tailor.  If you missed it, you can check it out here!
What's your favorite type of footwear to wear to work? Are you more for fashion or more for comfort? I can tell you that I have never worn a pair of heels to work. Well, I did once. But that was when I was playing our principal in an end of the year skit :) That was the first and last time. When I am out shopping and looking for work approved footwear, I usually look for something in the middle of comfort and fashion. 
My favorite type of shoes are flats. I love them because you can wear them with jeans or dress them up a bit. The best part, your feet aren't killing you after your day is done. The majority of the flats I have in my closet are from Old Navy and Target. The pair on the right end are actually Crocs. What, Crocs? I know, I was shocked too. But they are adorable, comfy and look like boat shoes :) I do love me some boat shoes, too!
Even if you don't have a blog you can still participate! Anytime you want to share one of your favorite fashion ideas, post it to Instagram with #faveslpfashion ! You can follow me @kevstin 

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