Change It Up for the End of the Year! Using Weird Photos in Therapy

Last post I shared some quick and easy vocabulary games that I’m planning to use for the end of the year. If you missed these ways to get your kids up and moving, check it out here.  While movement activities are one great way to change it up, introducing the weird and unusual in photos is another method that grabs kids’ attention. Want to prove it? Try leaving some of these photos on your desk, or leave them up on your computer (if you can access them at school) when you go to get your next group. Watch how quickly one of your students will notice them and start commenting!

therapy, describing, SLP, photoshop, end of year, language
First, check out some of these links to see if you have the right students/age groups to make use of this idea. I love finding these sites! I’ve included a few here, but you can go to my Pinterest boards here and here if you’d like to have more choices! One word of warning, though- some of these sites have a mix of both school appropriate and inappropriate images! Check all images out ahead of time to see if they are good for your caseload. You can also take screenshots of the ones you like to avoid the pictures you don’t want your students to see.

Of all the types of weird photos that I’ve tried, my students seem drawn to animal photos the most. With all of the photoshopped animals out there, it is easy to find weird mixes. Questions to answer include:
What kind of animals made up this weird one? What can this animal do? Why would it be good to combine these skills? How is it the same/different from each original animal?

I love this butterphant from!

A duck bunny from

There are some very unusual houses in this world and lots of photos on the internet. They easily prompt a discussion with questions including:
Would you like to live here? Why or why not?
What would be a good thing about living in this house? A problem? How is this the same as where you live? Different?

Mix it up!
There’s all kinds of weird, unusual, interesting photos at this site!

How could this situation have possibly happened?
How would you feel if this happened to you?
What would you do?

Play A Game!
After your students have the language skills to discuss the photos, you can follow up with another activity- describing! Lay your chosen pictures on your table and let your students take turns describing a picture without labeling anything! If they are able to get you or another student to guess the correct picture, they get to keep that picture. If they goof and label something in the picture, their turn ends. This can be harder than it seems for language impaired students to do! See who has the most pictures when time is up. Do you have kids with articulation goals? They have to follow the same language goals, but also produce their sound correctly while playing. Fluency? Have them practice the strategies used this year while describing!

I hope your students have a blast with this activity! Be sure to share the links if you have a favorite interesting, weird, bizarre photo site or another fun way to use the pictures!

Are you interested in more helpful therapy tips and freebies?  Subscribe to the weekly newsletter or visit on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram: @lookslikelanguage.

Spring Time Phonological Awareness Freebie Part 4

Have your students been having a blast playing games while practicing identification of beginning and ending sounds? Games make learning so much fun!

Now you can add a game board to the mix! Don’t worry if your students aren’t working on phonological awareness skills. This free game board is open ended so it can be used with any skill!

Did you miss the game cards? Not to worry. Just click here, here, and here.

I got this game board from Grant Avenue Design at Teachers Pay Teachers. It is an especially cool one, since students can start on both the top and the bottom to get to the other side! Check it out!

I hope your planning is being made easier with the help of my freebies.
If you are like me, you always have too much to do!

See you next week!

You Will Love the Descriptive Language in this Fun Activity!

Do your younger students want to go outside, but you don’t think that is the best setting for them? Well, I’ve been there and have a fun, language packed activity that brings the OUTside IN! Did you ever try flying a kite with a squeeze bottle?

Now, I have to be honest with you. I read about this in a magazine years ago and it absolutely does not do what those authors said would happen. But, you can elicit so much language and have such fun in a hands on activity, that I think you should give it a try anyway.
SLPs, language, describing, spring fun

First, have your students color and cut out small kites. I've made an exclusive freebie for this activity (the link will be in the newsletter) but you can easily cut them out of construction paper, too. Cut a piece of string or yarn to make the tail and tape it on. If your kites won't stay in the bottle, just cut a little point on the bottom edges so they will stay in a little longer.
Then you need a small bottle that is easy to squeeze. I found two kinds in the travel section of a local drugstore. The short bottle had a hole already, but I had to cut off the top of the tall bottle so that I could push the kite string inside. When you squeeze the bottle, the theory was that you can make the kite fly. In reality, it just kind of flutters down to the ground. However, when the students hold the bottle and blow on the kite, then it actually will fly across the room a short way.
My students had great fun and I had so many opportunities to model and elicit descriptive language.  Which bottle do you want, the short one or the tall one? Which color kite do you want?  Did you want the red kite with the long tail or the short tail? What happened when you squeezed fast? Slow? Hard? Softly? What about when you blew the kite? Which worked the best? The worst?

If all of your students stand on the same footprints to 'fly' their kites, you can also compare. Whose kite flew the farthest? The shortest? The highest? Straight? To the left? To the right? Did the longer strings go farther or the shorter ones? Did blowing hard and fast work better or long and slow?

Be sure to get my FREE, exclusive download by providing your email at the top. I promise, no sharing it, no spam- only quick weekly emails with my news and freebie alerts!

Whatever your kite flying results are, I guarantee that your students will be talking and having fun bringing the OUTside IN!

Are you interested in more helpful therapy tips and freebies?  Subscribe to the weekly newsletter or visit on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram: @lookslikelanguage.

Spring Time Phonological Awareness Freebie Part 3

Today you get the last set of cards for the beginning and ending sounds game. So exciting! This week, go ahead and put them to use getting your students to listen for sounds in words. You can play memory and go fish, or just have the students match the cards independently.

Be sure to come back next week, though, because there is an open ended board game that can be used with the cards or to practice any skill!

Did you miss the other sets of cards? Just click here and here, so you will be all set!

I sure hope that you are finding these freebies useful! Just click here to get the newest download.

Are you interested in more helpful therapy tips and freebies?  Subscribe to the weekly newsletter or visit on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram: @lookslikelanguage.

How to Survive the Downhill Slide

The Frenzied SLPs are linking up for the downhill slope! While downhill is usually the easiest and most fun part of the ride, at school it does bring some extra challenges. Many SLPs are drowning in paperwork. Most of us are juggling meetings and therapy. Then, there’s always the cleaning up, reorganizing and sometimes packing up for the summer that needs to be done.

Although the end of the year drags, seeming like it will never come, I actually prefer doing therapy at this point! With the comfort of having progress demonstrated or goals achieved, and behavior management methods worked out, there is some leeway to generalize skills, play games and just have some fun! That was my goal when I was shopping the TpT sale last week: finding some new, fun therapy activities to get through the end of the year. I accomplished my goal! (I hope you found what you were looking for, as well!)

This time of year, I like to loosen things up a little and get away from the therapy table as well. So, I went looking online to find some activity ideas (by skill used) to adapt to meet the needs of my caseload. I think that ESL teachers may have the best job ever- teaching kids with normal neurological skills to talk! Many ESL sites share fun ways to get kids talking. Here are two ideas that I’m looking at now for descriptive language from the site
slp, speech/language pathology, end of school year

I am thinking of adapting the ‘Swat’ game for my lower level groups and using pictures of words they have learned this year on my board. The first week, I will provide the descriptions and they can swat the words off the wall or catch it on the sticky hands I found at the Dollar Store. The next week, they will get to be the SLP, taking turns giving clues to each other to find the words. To keep them from purposely giving limited information, I challenge them to give better clues than I did, making their combined score of words figured out on the first clue higher than mine was the week before. Games like this let the students use their skills, have fun, and let me do some mindless paper filing/recycling while I am interacting with them, cueing as needed and monitoring their carryover skills.

vocabulary, games, speech/language therapy, end of school year
For my higher groups, the game I am going to try out from this website is called ‘Hot Seat.’ I will adapt this version of a vocabulary game by having the student who is giving the description write the word on a small white board. (If you follow me at all, you will have seen pictures of my favorite dollar store deal before!) The student has to give descriptions of the word that was written on the mini board until the student in the hot seat guesses the word. Then, they switch seats.

Since I don’t have teams, I like to change the rules a bit so that my students are both motivated to keep trying and to not become frustrated. To do this, I will limit my students to 5 clues to get the other to guess the word. If they go over, that round ends. If they get the other student to  guess the word, they get a point for each word. The students will alternate chairs, the ‘hot seat’ being the guesser, each round. For some groups, I may start with a category or a subject area to make the job of the student in the ‘hot seat' a little easier.

So, what are your pet peeves this time of year? What is your most difficult time of year? Mine is the fall. Soooo hard to get back to work. But now, we have a long, wonderful summer to look forward to!

Are you interested in more helpful therapy tips and freebies?  Subscribe to the weekly newsletter or visit on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram: @lookslikelanguage.

For more ideas to help you make it to the summer, check out these links!

Spring Time Phonological Awareness Freebie Part 2

I’m so glad you are back to get the next set of cards in this fun set! There are 24 cards in the set with pictured, familiar words for your students to listen for matching beginning and ending sounds. The cards can be used in simple games, like matching and go fish, or as an activity in learning centers.

Remember you can sign up for my newsletter to get the whole packet as one download. I promise not to share your email, just to offer you weekly updates and occasional exclusive freebies!

Did you miss the first set? Just click here. You'll be glad you did!

Thanks for making the time in your busy life to stop by! Click here to get your free download. I hope you love it!

Are you interested in more helpful therapy tips and freebies?  Subscribe to the weekly newsletter or visit on Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram: @lookslikelanguage.

SLPs, It Is Time to Feel Appreciated!

Hi Y’all! If I sound a little southern it is because I have been hanging out at Mia McDaniel’s store, looking at all the great choices and deciding what to put in my shopping cart. 

TpT sitewide sales are so exciting! I think we all deserve to treat ourselves and feel celebrated, don’t you? The Frenzied SLPs, with special thanks to Jennifer at SLPRunner, are hosting this linky and hoping that you feel celebrated! Don't forget to use the code CELEBRATE when you shop to get the extra discount!

At Mia’s shop, I put her Reading & Responding Interpreting Language with Text Messages into my shopping cart. I own some of Mia’s other fun products and my students love them. I know they will love this one, too! With text messages, the amount of reading required is short and sweet, as well as being motivating. So many functional language activities are targeted in this packet and I couldn’t resist that cracked phone screen!

Then, I headed over to Small Talk Speech and put Take Out Topics in my cart. While most of my caseload needs help with conversation, I have some students working on carryover of the /r/ sound, too. This fun set lets me address both goals! An added benefit is that the clip art isn’t too cutesy for my older students!

Finally, I stopped by Susan Berkowitz to get a new activity for my older life skills students. I like  Life Skills- What to Say and Not to Say in the Community because it covers such an important life skill. The picture cues will help my limited readers to organize what to say. I like that includes a variety of ideas, as well as reasons, for saying/not saying things in situations. It is a treat for me because I don’t have to think of all the situations I need to discuss- I can just interact with my students!

I just love having some new, fun activities to help me get through the end of the year! Don’t you?

I have some fun, new activities to share, too! Perspective Taking Fun uses cute clip art of kids playing pranks on each other! Students love to play pranks and this is a very concrete way to start your kids on the spectrum thinking about how people have different perspectives. I love that they can interpret the body language and facial cues in the clipart to determine the kids’ perspectives on the jokes. I included thought bubbles to give them practice making statements from another point of view, worksheets to compare their points of view to the pictured student, and provided an emotions mini poster to help out with vocabulary. This activity also opens the door for your students to discuss their opinions with each other, and use some flexible thinking to determine what kinds of jokes are ok to do and what kind aren’t.

Hot off the presses! I've been really busy working to complete a new set of file folder activities for verbally limited kids and AAC users with a summer theme. I managed to finish 4 sets AND bundle them for you, too, so that you could get some extra savings! 

I worked for many years with nonverbal and minimally verbal students on the spectrum using low tech AAC. After my students were able to request their basic needs and label familiar objects, I started to explore ways to get them to comment and communicate using simple sentences. Verb use is more difficult to teach, but I found that it certainly was possible to do! One of the formats I used is the one that is in my new File Folder Sentence Activities. I’ve made sets for 4 fun summer events (playground, field day, carnivals and barbecues) to help your students communicate all summer long! You know that I always want my packets to be helpful, so please check the previews to be sure it is right for you!

I hope that you feel appreciated, and that you find the item that is just right for you! Then, treat yourself! You work hard! There’s a lot more suggestions to help you find just what you are looking for. Just hop right over to The Frenzied SLPs!

Are you interested in more helpful therapy tips and freebies?  Join the free weekly newsletter or visit on PinterestFacebook and Instagramlookslikelanguage.
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