Showing posts with label Articulation. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Articulation. Show all posts

Beginning or Ending Sounds- A Free Phonological Awareness Activity Week 3

You might be saying to yourself, "What is phonological awareness, anyway? What happened to phonics instruction?" 

Well, phonics instruction still exists, but your kids will be a lot better prepared for it if you have fun with sounds in play before they get to school age!
Help your child with pre-reading skills! Find out more at Looks Like Language!

FUN FACT 1:
Phonemes are the sounds, not the letters of the alphabet, that make up a language.

FUN FACT 2:
Children need a lot of practice listening to and playing with the sounds of our language before they are ready to attach them to the alphabet and written language.

FUN FACT 3:
If your child has difficulty pronouncing a sound, playing games to build skills for listening and identifying the sound can be helpful in learning to say the sound more clearly!

So, what are you waiting for? Download the free Beginning and Ending Sounds Activity and get started! If you missed the prior weeks, get started with the first download here.

If this got you curious, you can read more about the difference between phonological awareness, phonemic awareness and phonics at my friend Sarah's blog, Speech is Beautiful! 

Enjoy! Linda

7 Creative Tips for Using Dice in Speech/Language Therapy

How do you make 'work' more fun for middle school students? It can be quite the challenge! My middle school students function at an elementary school level in many areas, but as they've gotten older, they aren't as interested in board games as they once were. 


Being creative with dice to motivate your students!

Using dice has come to my rescue on more than one occasion when dealing with disinterested middle schoolers! Of course, elementary school students will love these games, too!


BASIC OPEN ENDED GAME

The basic, open ended game can be used for almost any goal. It is so easy to keep around and pull out when students are refusing to work. All you have to do is divide a sheet of paper into 6 sections and number each box.


Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language

The students can even do this themselves, choosing their color paper and deciding which of their targets will go in each box. 


Besides the fact that giving students choices can make them more willing to participate, the act of deciding gets them thinking and talking about what they have been learning in speech. 




Each student can be giving different types of responses and still play the same game! In the photo below, the student on the left is practicing /r/ in the final position. To get even more productions, have the student say the word the number of times that is rolled! The student on the right is using pronouns to tell about the pictures 


https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Articulation-Game-110-Picture-Cards-for-R-Speech-Therapy-1869077
STOP & GO GAME

How about using dice to get 100 productions of a target sound? This game makes it easier!

Cover a die with red and green paper on the sides and put tape over it. Students roll the die and keep producing words with their sounds until they make a mistake or roll a stop. Then it is the next student's turn. 

While they are waiting, they can place checks in the boxes, color or dot them if you keep track of how many productions they did. The first student to get 100 correct productions wins!

I made this into a freebie for you! Get it here.


Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language
DICE BINGO
Did you ever play Bingo with dice?  If you use two different colors to number the boxes, students can roll to see which box to answer about and cover.

This is a great visual way to build math skills for co-ordinates and quadrants and your students won't even realize it! 


Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language
DICE CONNECT 3

Connect 3 is a fun game that can easily be played with dice and a page with boxes!  I like to use different colored boxes to match my dice. Then I hide the dice in a bag and let the student take one out to roll.

After responding about the target in the matching box, they write their initials in the box. Any time that they fill in an adjacent box, they connect them. The person who connects three, or has the most pairs, is the winner.


Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language
DICE NARRATIVES

Narratives are such an important skill, which so many of my students lack. I bought some sets of soft foam math cubes at the Dollar Store and covered them with the stickers from my Story Grammar Marker set. I covered them with tape and I was ready to go!

Use any pictures that contain some story elements to get your students started. Students roll the dice and tell the information they want to add to their story. 

I have done this orally to help my students practice formulating correct sentence structures, but you could have students write their answers and form a written narrative, too. When they have figured out all of the elements, it is time to tell the story!


Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language
DICE VOCABULARY REVIEW

For a quick vocabulary review game, have each student write 6 of their target words on an index card. They roll the die to see which word to define and use in a sentence correctly to earn a point. I give them 7-10 rolls each and see which student got the most points when I need it to be quick!





Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language
SPINNERS & DICE

To change things up a bit, sometimes I combine spinners and dice! My students need lots of practice formulating ideas into sentences, so sometimes I have them spin to get one idea to use and roll to get the other idea, then combine them in a concise, correct sentence.

The photo shows this idea using action photos  along with a question spinner, found in some of my sets. Students roll to get the picture to use and then spin the spinner to ask or answer using that question word about their picture.

My students often need thinking time before responding, so I like to do one round where everyone rolls  and another round where they take turns giving their answers. It may take a little more time, but I have found that the added co-operativeness and willingness to do the activity for longer compensate for the extra time! 

How do you use dice in therapy?

Enjoy! Linda

Putting Mixed Group Tips to Work: You Can Do It!

 5 tips to make mixed groups work! Looks Like Language
Mixed groups can be challenging until you get the hang of it! You can do it with these tips!  How do you actually put all of these tips for mixed groups to use? Last post, I shared my ideas while highlighting a packet that includes multiple skills. This week I will show you a different approach, along with some ideas for how to modify materials to meet more needs.

If you are new to this series, you can start here.

Mixed Groups! You can do it! Looks-Like-Language
TIP: Have fun activities!
Once you know the kinds of activities that the students in your groups like, you can come up with a multitude of variations that will get you through the year. 

* Game boards are a Must Have Around!

* Spinners are great with game boards, but many (like the pictured one) can be used as stand alone activities.

* Use dice and the game cards. Just write numbers on the backs of the cards and let them roll to find their card.

TIP: Do a bit of planning!
With some creative thinking and a bit of planning, you can incorporate different goals into the fun activity you have planned for the majority of the group. 

Mixed Groups! You can do it! Looks-Like-Language
*Articulation: Use the target sounds in the responses. I believe that placing language demands along with the articulation effort really helps students along the way to carryover! You can make a list of words or let higher level students figure out one on their own.

* Grammar: Tell a sentence using the target to tell about each picture. 

* Ask and Answer Questions: Have the students interact verbally, by asking and answering questions with each other about the situations before their turn ends. Fostering interaction skills is so important!

* Vocabulary: Incorporate one of the words they have already learned into their responses, or add a new word, such as rue!

* Describing- Add # descriptive words in their sentences.

Mixed Groups! You can do it! Looks-Like-Language
TIP: Organize it!
Finding great organizers makes it so much easer to extend the activities and see if your students have really learned the concept. For the pictured organizers, applying the skills to short YouTube clips and books is a great way to do this. They work well for for including more goals, too! 

* Speech/Language: Apply all of the 'Adapt it' goals to use with the organizer. 

* Social Language: Cause-effect is a vital skill for social situations! Can your students predict what will happen as an effect or consequence of their words and actions?

* Social Language: Thinking of multiple causes and multiple effects in social situations is a great way to expand perspective taking and thinking more flexibly!

Mixed Groups! You can do it! Looks-Like-Language
TIP: Adapt materials to add another goal!

Use the templates to add more goals to the sets.

* Students draw or write their own card sets as an activity after teaching to consolidate skills. 

* Students make their own card sets before playing the game to get baseline data.

* Send the templates home for students to fill in for homework. To get started, fill in part of the organizer together in school so there is one completed example. This also lets you write quick notes on the worksheet to explain anything your student found confusing.

* Take away the pictures and words after you have completed the activities to see if students can use the visual to help them organize their own thoughts independently.

Mixed Groups! You can do it! Looks-Like-Language
TIP: Find materials with multiple levels in one goal area.

While this is perfect for starting one student at the lowest skill level and building abilities to a higher level, it also allows students at different levels in this skill to interact with each other. 

Letting one student explain something to another student, like playing teacher, can be a great way to consolidate skills for the one student while letting the other student hear the perspective that made it click for his peer.

Having a variety of materials in one set makes your job easier, too. One student can sequence 2 pictures to play the game, another can work on sentences, while others read the passage silently while waiting and tell the answer when it is their turn.

Working with mixed groups is quite possible. I hope my tips help! If you'd like to try out my Explaining Cause-Effect Activities packet and put these tips to quick use, get it here! Enjoy!

Sharing the Love! Unintelligibility Week Daily Tips!

Tips for Unintelligible Students- Looks-Like-Language
Welcome back to my daily tips to share the love! This past week I was posting tips for treating unintelligible students on IG. Here's my round-up with a little more information! 


Tips for Unintelligible Students- Looks-Like-Language
Often students who are highly unintelligible have patterns of speech errors going on, so working on one sound at a time is a drop in the bucket! *Analyze the errors for problems with phonological processes or errors in sound movement patterns based on place or manner.
*Work on these error patterns using multiple sound targets and a variety of words. If the students are making progress, keep it up! If they aren't, move on to another error pattern and see if it is more stimulable.
*Continue to check back on previous sounds to see if there have been any changes in the students' stimulability.

Tips for treating unintelligible students from Looks-Like-Language
There are no clearcut guidelines from research for how to proceed with this, although the ASHA website has a good overview. Clinically speaking, I've found a few tips to be useful.
*Error patterns that have more visible sounds are often easier to elicit.
*Complete omissions of sounds, unusual phonological patterns and unusual prosody make students very difficult to understand.
*Close substitutions, such as 's' for 'sh', impact intelligibility less than a pattern of substitutions that have very little in common with the error sound.

Tips for treating unintelligible students from Looks-Like-Language
It is not possible to practice all of the words! Especially with more impaired students who have multiple issues and need more repetition to make improvements, we really need to focus on the most vital and functional skills to have an impact in daily life.
*Have conversations when walking to the therapy room and pay attention to words and phrases the students use the most often.
*These become the target list to practice every session as a warm-up activity.
*When they can say the words correctly, have them practice in the conversational phrases they use.
The rest of the session can include practice with words that tie in to the language activities for the day, but the frequently used word list gets lots of practice!

Tips for treating unintelligible students from Looks-Like-Language
Be sure to watch your students as they attempt new sounds or new words! Moving their head when attempting to move their tongue, smiling all the time (even when not happy) and adding additional vowel sounds are a few signals that they could be having problems with jaw stability or grading and moving their articulators independently.

Practicing speech production with some extra stability support is sometimes all that a student needs to get better sound production.


Tips for treating unintelligible students from Looks-Like-Language
I learned so much working jointly with my students' OTs and PTs. Together, we make a terrific team! If you suspect problems with motor planning or stability issues, these are the people you need to speak to first!

If you are interested in reading more about the development of disassociated jaw, lip and tongue movements for speech production, you can get free access to this article that was published in the Journal of Speech, Language and Hearing Research.

Tips for treating unintelligible students from Looks-Like-Language
Simple books with repetitive refrains that include your students' target sounds are a wonderful way to get lots of practice! Most of my students who were unintelligible also had language needs, so this is a great way to target multiple skills.











Tips for treating unintelligible students from Looks-Like-Language
If your student has to practice many times to gain the skill, be sure to start with some word or phrases that are functional!
*Choose target words to serve a communicative function, like getting a need met, be easy to elicit multiple times by all staff during a typical day. *Include words that have easy to produce sounds along with the the more difficult ones. Build in some success!
*It's best of all when the words can be combined to produce functional phrases after the child can say the words!

Simple artic errors? No problem! But when a child is unintelligible and has multiple needs, it can be overwhelming trying to decide the best way to start therapy. I hope these tips help you make your plan!

3 Thrilling Halloween Activities

Halloween is such a fun holiday! Your students can have a blast learning with just a bit of effort on your part if you make these enjoyable interactive therapy materials that cost you almost nothing!

Thrilling, you might say? Well, I was certainly thrilled that my students loved these activities so much that I didn't have too much planning to do! And if you landed here by accident, scroll down to the bottom for some Halloween ideas on video!

Last year this time, my blog was still so new that these fun activities got hardly any exposure, and they truly deserve better than that! So, I am recapping each activity here,  from youngest to oldest ages, with a link to the full posts. My students have had so much fun with these activities, I'm quite sure that yours will, too!


Halloween therapy ideas from Looks Like Language


Our youngest and most limited students often need help learning the language for routines. What better way to help them than play? Just a shoebox, construction paper and some stickers can help you create great Halloween interactive fun. You can use this over and over all month long! Click here.
Yes, you can create easy therapy materials!

A bit of colored felt, glue and markers can add a lot to any Halloween toys that you own! Puppets are so helpful to get shy students talking. Putting anything into a container gives that element of surprise that kids love, almost like opening a present! Give yourself a little present and check out this speech/language therapy idea here!


Tips for Making Bingo Interactive!


Older students like to have fun, too! Get a little gaming and movement into your therapy sessions with this easy to make bingo variation. I've used it to work on inference skills, but you can do so much more to adapt it to your group's goals! Learn about it here.



                                                           Not so cute :(
Felt Halloweenies are quick and easy to do!

Update: I just had to share my latest Target find since it may still be available near you! While it is true that our hand made materials get kids talking just as well as the 'pretty' ones, we do like to treat ourselves a little and these are just darn cute!

I love the button feature- you can reinforce those fine motor skills while having the fun of hiding something inside one of them! Have your students request each one until they find where the prize was hidden!

                                                     Very cute! :)

Be sure to check out the links to my free Halloween downloads! You can access all of the links here.

How about some thrilling, easy to do Halloween decorations?


Or maybe you'd like these fun tricks for setting up a party!



Happy Halloween! Enjoy!

5 Dollar Store Must-Haves for SLPs!

Shopping at the dollar store has made my SLP life so much easier! Thanks to Talkin’ With Twang for this linky idea!
I’ve made so many purchases from the Dollar Store to organize my therapy room, provide student prizes and find fun, inexpensive materials for therapy. I really had to think about what to include so this post wouldn’t be too long. Here's what I decided on:

Organizing: Materials

I posted here about how much I like using page protectors. While I buy them online, I really the pretty colors of the $1 binders and I love how easily they fit on a shelf or in a filing cabinet. Pop your TpT product pages in a page protector with the game and spinners in a separate one. Store the game cards in a plastic zip bag and stick them in with the game. Put all of this in a binder, along with similar materials, and you are ready to grab it and go! See how easy? Pictured is the game board from my Talk About SH- Spring packet.

Organizing: For My Students

I love having basic supplies that I need for every session within easy reach. A cute basket can hold whatever you need on your table and make it easy for students to pass around. My go-to items include a small dry erase board, varied colors of dry erase markers so students have choices, small make-up sponges for erasers, and of course, the basic pens, pencils, erasers and scissors in a cup.  All of the containers came from the Dollar Store. 
TIP: Be sure to keep your permanent markers stored somewhere else! If a student uses the wrong marker, just write over the permanent marker and erase while wet. After few tries, the permanent marker will erase.

Organizing: Just for Me!

Don’t we deserve a treat, too?  I couldn’t resist this cute little colored cork board to keep my To Do items on. It is small, so I can hang it up right near me while I work. That way, at the end of the day, my notes of what I need to get out, copy or prepare before the next session will be in one spot. The binder clips are cute for hanging small items that get lost easily, too!

Fun and Inexpensive:

I was so excited to find this 100 day poster! My students love big board games and this fits the bill! Just change ‘days’ to ‘sounds’ and your students can race their way to 100 productions! I’d play to let them keep moving their cute little vehicles (Dollar Store erasers!) on space for every correct sound production at whatever level they are working on. When they make a mistake, they have to stop there for the next student to take a turn. Can anyone make it to 100 before time is out?


Check out the erasers in this picture. They make great game pieces! (They are lousy erasers, though!)

Prizes:

While I have tried many prizes from the Dollar Store, these are the all time favorite with my older kids. They come in varied colors, with some even having their own carrying case. I only give out prizes about once a quarter, and with my caseload, it is very much worth the money I’ve spent to have a daily point system that lets them work toward a prize!

I’m sure you’ve shopped there, too! Do you agree that it should be named the Ten Dollar Store? Maybe more? What is your favorite purchase? 

For more ideas, remember to stop back in to Talkin’ With Twang!

The Rocky Road to "R"


Do you groan inside when you get a student with an ‘R’ problem on your caseload? Don’t worry, there’s help to be had!  It is a difficult sound to correct, but the more ‘tricks’ you have under your belt, the better your chances are that you will find something that works.
There are quite a few blog posts by SLP’s about how to achieve placement for the /r/ sound. One that I have found to be extremely helpful is from Katie at Playing with Words 365. I would definitely check it out!

Another link to check out: Judy Kuster has compiled an amazing list of techniques that have been used to elicit the /r/ sound. Something in this variety may be helpful to you!

Although we all give a big cheer (or a sigh of relief!) when our student has finally achieved a tongue placement for the /r/ that produces an acceptable sound, our job has really just begun. Although that is true for any articulation error, I think that, as SLPs, we feel it more strongly with the /r/.
This is my theory. The “R” sound is one of the most difficult sounds to make in terms of motor skills. The students at older ages who are still having great difficulty with this placement often had some mild degree of motor speech problems when they were younger, in my opinion. You may still catch hints of it when you hear them mixing up the syllables of new multisyllabic words, or if their speech clarity diminishes slightly when they speak quickly (possibly due to weak contacts for consonant placement due to the increased speed.)

When I suspect that there may be some motor planning or jaw stability issues at play, I am careful to use jaw support techniques when working on placement for the /r/ sound. My favorite way for older students is to have them prop their jaw on their hands, with elbows placed on the table. I've tried using bite blocks as well, but often this just confuses the issue even more as there is something new in their mouth for their tongues to move around. When the jaw is stabilized, however, this lets the student move their tongue more freely to try to find the correct placement.  I've had the most success by starting with production of the 'L', 'T' or 'D' sounds and having the student draw their tongue backward along the roof of the mouth until an approximation of 'R' is achieved, but try any of the methods suggested in the links above until you find one that works for your student. I don't worry about lip rounding, the most common substitution, until after a consistent tongue placement has been achieved.


If there are mild jaw stability or motor planning issues, it makes sense that we use extra caution in the steps we take to get that “R” sound from isolation to conversational speech.  At times, I’ve been afraid to vary the production that helped the student learn to produce the sound for fear of not being able to establish it again! I have learned that slow and steady wins the race. 

This is how I've done it.

Pair the R + vowel or vowel + R  that the student has achieved (the success sound) with the new production you are trying, but do it in alternation. Returning to the initial success sound on every other production helps to maintain successful tongue placement. After the sound production stays stable, you can check to see how many trials of the new sound can be made before the student loses the placement. Immediately, go back to the success sound. Then set the trial # for the new sound where he was successful.

Pay attention to the vowel placement chart when you are making your selection of what to try next. Remember those charts? For example, the “R” is generally made high in a closed mouth position, so it makes sense to try it out with “ee” or “ah” as those sounds are not far away from the place of success. The ‘ee’ sound has the benefit of a smiling mouth position, which tends to reduce the likelihood that the ‘w’ sound will be substituted. Each child is different, so try until you get success.


So, if “er” was the success sound, the drill might look like this:


 er  ree  er  ree” ”er  ree  
Repeat using drills of 10 trials multiple times throughout the session, with breaks in between, until the student can say it correctly and fluently.
Then, try to see how many times the student can say the new sound before it breaks down. You are keeping productions successful- always drop back if needed.
ree   ree  ree”   “wee”
This error tells you that you can have your student practice up to 3 productions of “ree” before adding in the success sound “er” to maintain stable, correct productions.
So, the practice would look like this.
ree” “ree” “ree” “er” “ree” “ree” “ree” “er” “ree

Continue building the number of repetitions the student can produce correctly in a row without losing the placement, and soon you will have a stable /r/ sound. Got it?
I hope I was able to make this clear! Once you are able to get past the syllable production stage, I’ve used this same co-articulation strategy at the word to sentence level in my “R” Rainy Day Game.  I loved finding words that moved from the “er” sound to the initial “R” sound that could be used in sequence together to make phrases and sentences. I even included “R” vocabulary words at the upper elementary level to help work on language skills at the same time. I just love being able to address multiple goals with one set of materials! Do you like that, too?
Don't forget to check my Rainy Day 'R' post with a craftivity and a FREEBIE!
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