Escape the Speech Room

Sunday, April 23, 2017 5 comments


I was recently invited to participate in a career fair at my son's elementary school. I was excited to participate and share my passion for speech-language pathology with them! I did not learn what speech-language pathology was until I was in college (gasp!) but am so thankful that I was blessed to be housed in the dorms across from a SLP major. Watching her creatively develop materials for her client in her clinical inspired me to take an introductory course to check out what speech-language pathology was all about. The rest is history!

In speaking with my son, one suggestion that he had was for the presentation to be interactive and engaging. I couldn't agree more so I decided to create an "Escape the Speech Room" activity that would introduce the students to various aspects of communication with missions in Articulation, Language, Fluency, Voice and Pragmatics! The students had a blast and they learned a bunch along the way! 


Knowing that the students would likely be listening to various presentations throughout the day, I wanted to give them the opportunity to get up and move while learning in the process.



Escape the Speech Room was broken up into 5 “missions” which were broken up into centers. Each of the 5 Missions reflected on an area within our scope of practice: Articulation, Language, Voice, Fluency, and Pragmatics.



Each mission contained a Debriefing Sheet with information about that particular area. It also included a list of materials that they needed as well as a description of their mission. Each mission uncovered a key to the help unlock the individual padlocks on the box. Once the groups solved their missions, they came together to learn about some of our work settings and decode the final clue. The individual padlocks all contained a card with a setting an SLP may work in. The students used those cards to collectively determine what the passcode to the final word lock was.


When the students completed their challenge, they filled out a Reflections sheet to show what they learned and share it with the other students. This allowed students to learn about the different centers or areas of speech-language pathology by reading their fellow classmates' reflections.


Does this sound like something that you would be interested in using in YOUR setting? Let me know what you think! {Hint, Hint: My next newsletter will contain some BSHM freebies you won't want to miss!}


Incorporating Literacy into Your Sensory Bin

Sensory bins are a great way to engage students with a high interest activity that can be easily incorporated into your day. 



I love to use this Recollections storage container that I purchased from Michael's Craft Store as a portable sensory bin that has a storage tray inside. The storage tray makes it so convenient to switch out the items in the sensory bin at a moment's notice. My sensory bin may have sand, water beads, rocks, cut straws, or colored rice/pasta within it. 

One way I love to incorporate literacy into my mixed groups is by using Open Ended Literacy Task Cards in my Sensory bin. I have several mixed groups so I print each target group on a different color of paper so it is easy for me to differentiate between target goals in my therapy sessions. One less task to juggle during one of those "all hands on deck" mixed groups does wonders to save my sanity.


You can check out how I created a colorful sensory bin using pasta in this video here.

{For more information on how I make my rice/pasta brightly colored, check out my blog post on DIY Sensory Bins over at Conversations from the Classroom. You can watch a step by step tutorial in this video here.}


BSHM Freebie Alert

Monday, April 17, 2017 No comments
Just like the end of the school year, Better Speech and Hearing Month is just around the corner (not that I am counting 😉).  I have several goodies up my sleeve for you but let's start with this fun, no prep freebie. You can download this SLP Fortune Teller here or click on the image below. The directions are built in with visuals to help you along the way. Have fun! 



P.S. When you download, make sure that you click "Follow" beside the green star (if you haven't already) so you will be the first to know about new uploads that come your way. 


Quick DIY Tip & Update

Wednesday, April 5, 2017 No comments
Happy Spring everyone! I just wanted to pop in to let you know about a quick DIY tip I blogged about over on Conversations from the Classroom using what you may already have! Hope on over to see what I crafted up using Easter egg dye and clothespins that I picked up from my local dollar store.


Wow, it has been a while since I have hopped on here. If you have been wondering what I have been up to, here is a quick glimpse into some of the happenings in my therapy room (and beyond). 



We have been trying out these awesome Pop Phones. They are a great companion to the app Seesaw (a digital learning portfolio that I use with my students).


Speaking of going digital, I used the No Prep version of my Cup Stacking paired with these rubber bunnies which was a huge crowd pleaser. 


While we are on the subject of Target, my home away from home, look at these fun mouth molds I found in the gag gift section! They were perfect to make dough molds of our mouths and compare/contrast target sounds.


My graduate intern and I got our head in the game with the annual Staff vs. Students basketball game.  We made it through the game with no injuries and our pride intact as the staff maintained our undefeated record. Phew!


Last, but certainly not least, I was privileged to attend a balloon release to celebrate a special little Hall & Oates fan's birthday and educate others on lissencephaly. 


I hope that you have enjoyed a great month too! My students continue to be unstoppable and inspire me each and every day. Leave a comment below or email me to let me know what you have going on in your corner of the speech world. I'd love to hear from you!

App Review: Leaping Leo

Sunday, February 19, 2017 No comments


Leaping Leo by Outloud is available for free in iTunes.  Leaping Leo is a voice activated application that uses the child's voice to control the avatar/photo to collect coins, navigate through a maze, jump over obstacles or avoid fire. The first 4 levels are offered for free with an in App purchase option for $3.99 to unlock the remaining levels. At the time of this review, there are 18 levels in all.


Before you play, you will need to calibrate the voice threshold. I chose 40 dB to reflect the noise level in a quite room. You can reference various noise levels on ASHA's website here
You can select which Profile picture will be hopping around through the scenes by choosing an animal, avatar or student photo.
Next, you will take your character through an adventure, controlling the character with your voice. The character may collect coins, look for treasure or navigate through a map.
Implications for speech therapy include encouraging students to use an appropriate volume of speech, reinforcing practice of targeted speech/language goals such as articulation targets or formulating sentences with targeted words. You can pair the app with targeted stimuli presented on Articulation Sticks or task cards. I found it to be a fun, motivating way to incorporate technology into the therapy session in a meaningful, rewarding way while targeting speech-language goals. You can find it here in the iTunes store.

Would you like to see Leaping Leo in action? You can check out my demonstration on Facebook Live here.

* A copy of Leaping Leo was provided to SLPTalk by Outloud. No other compensation was received. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.