When I first began working in the field of speech therapy as an SLP-Aide, I had access to my supervising SLP’s materials.  He had all of the card sets created by Color Cards.  I used those sets quite a lot over the years as an SLP-Aide.  Therefore, I was pleased to see that they now have apps and even more delighted when I was contacted and asked if I would be interested in doing a review of the Everyday Objects App.  Although I was provided the app, the opinions in this review are all mine. 

This app provides three activities: describing, reveal, and viewing the cards.  The viewing option allows for you to pull each one up so that labeling skills can be worked on and/or to provide a review of what vocabulary will be worked on during the session.

The describing task brings up one of the pictured cards for students to describe.  It provides an audio stating “Tell me about this” but also provides a visual sentence prompt.  In the top, right corner, the app provides a little microphone so you can record what the student says. On the bottom of the screen, you are able to take data for the activity by marking if it was completed accurately, with prompting, or not correct.  I love that I have the option to state if prompting was needed beyond just correct or wrong.  

The reveal activity will show a small portion of the screen and students are asked to guess what the picture is of.  Each time you touch the screen an additional portion is displayed. Again, the microphone is on top to record student guesses and the bottom allows you to mark if the response was accurate, required help, or was not correct.

I like to get the biggest bang for my buck, so I do not use it in this way.  With the knowledge I have from choosing which pictures to work on, I provide the student with descriptive features and see if they are able to guess accurately prior to final reveal of the object.  I attempted to also have the students choose three pictures and then turn the tables on me.  They would give me descriptive features (function, location, appearance, etc..) for me to guess.  Of course, to get the most out of it, I would play along as if I could not guess correctly until the final reveal. 

In the settings, the cards are grouped by difficulty: easy, medium, and hard.  The settings screen allows you to view the image banks and choose the number of cards and which cards you wish to use. It also allows you to set up the activity by determining the background color, cut out shape (for the reveal), collect information for reports, and whether  you wish to provide a counter or not.  It also allows you to decide if you would like the task broken up with a cute reinforcing animation or not and if the keytone or audio is turned off or on.   You are also able to review student reports with a graph to monitor progress and buy additional cards. One of the BEST FEATURES for this app is that in the settings area, I can add my own cards to the mix.  It is simple to do too!  Simply take a picture of an item on the spot or use a picture in your library, name it, choose which category it fits (verbs, objects, emotions, what's wrong), choose level of difficulty, and save! 

OVERALL IMPRESSIONS:  I loved the flexibility of moving along as I see fit and that the app provided a microphone and the option to report that the student required additional prompting to complete the task. Real life pictures are also wonderful to have instead of line art or cartoon clip art.  I definitely see how these pictures would also speak to older populations.  The data collection graphs were also helpful.  I LOVE that I can add my own pictures too! That is a wonderful feature to have because I can add more recent or age-specific pictures.   However, there were a few things that I felt would make the app even better.  The pictures as they are work for older individuals; however, for littler kids updated pictures would be helpful.  I recognized a lot of these pictures from the same cards I used years ago. The last thing I would suggest is that in the view the cards portion, it would be great if you could choose a field of 2, 3, or 4 pictures that can be side by side to work on receptive identification or compare/contrast.  One of the things I loved about the original cards is that you can work on so many different skills and it would be great if some of that flexibility could be applied into the app.  Overall, it is a great and simple app for working on labeling, descriptive features, and inferencing using real pictures.  Plus, the price just can’t be beat especially when you can add your own cards and tailor it to meet student vocabulary needs!

You can buy Everyday Objects App from Color Cards for $1.99.  Add-on packs can be purchased in settings.  Each additional pack includes 100 cards for $4.99.  Add on packs include: Everyday Objects, Verbs, Emotions, and What Wrong cards. 
Opportunities to practice speech and language skills are all around us.  We know this to be true as Speech-Language Pathologists.  However, such a simple truth is often lost on those who are not in our field.  We provide homework for students to practice and parents are hopefully diligent in doing so.  However, how often can we make the homework directly relate to an experience and provide meaning for students to later recall and access again when working on that skill?

Knowing that the holiday break usually leaves students without two weeks of therapy, I typically send home extra practice sheets but I also provide them with some functional and fun holiday activity suggestions.  Will they be trimming a tree? Maybe, they make Christmas cookies or decorate a gingerbread house? Do they hang stockings and wrap presents to exchange? Do they spin the dreidel or light the menorah?  Here are some functional words students can practice while enjoying holiday activities:

Consonant Sequences:  spin, start, stop, smash, star, stocking, sprinkle, branch, dreidel, frosting, present, trim, tree
/k/: cookie, cut, coal, sprinkle, stocking, decorate, bake, milk, dunk
/s/ Santa, scissors, Sleigh, spin, start, stop, smash, sprinkle, frosting, present, star
/r/: dreidel, frosting, present, sprinkle, start, decorate, ornament, ribbon, star, branch, reindeer, wrap, paper, tear, gingerbread, menorah

What additional holiday words would you include to target these common speech sound errors?  Go here, to see ways to build language skills and memories.

It is that time again!  Time to get your Cyber Monday deals on TpT!  The best news though is that you can save up to 28% off on great new therapy materials!  Thanks to Jenna from Speech Room News for hosting this linky party so that we can all share what we have in our shopping carts.

Everything in my store will be 20% off.  Using the promo code provided by TpT, you can save up to 28% on items in my store (on top of the extra 15-20% off already offered on my bundles).  Here are some items in my store that you may find helpful.

INTERACTIVE ARTICULATION NOTEBOOK BUNDLES-  These bundles are GROWING!  At this time, they include the Autumn and Winter Interactive Notebooks.  The Early Sounds sets target p, b, m, n, t, d, k, g, f, and v.  The Later Sounds sets target s, z, l, sh, ch, th, j, r, vocalic r, -RL blend, and S/L/R blends.  Both the EARLY Sounds and LATER Sounds Bundles include the following activities with seasonal twists: cut and past, write and color, game boards, spinners, shutter folds, spin-a-sentence, auditory bombardment lists, progress monitoring sheets, data collection sheets, and more! Targets at word, phrase, and sentence!

RECEPTIVE and EXPRESSIVE LANGUAGE BUILDER: WINTER- This pack works on the following tasks: building vocabulary, asking/answering questions, recalling details, identifying and expressing descriptive concepts, following 1-3 step directions (including temporal concepts), formulating sentences, answering yes/no questions, and more!  The great thing is that I have included barrier games, sentence strips, and are manipulative to assist kiddos with formulating sentences and questions.  My kiddos love things having hands-on materials and this receptive and expressive language builder pack does!
ARTICULATION DOUGH N' GO BUNDLE- This pack is jam-packed with fun!  It includes coloredmats for dough and black and white dauber pages (great for homework) to target the following in all word positions: p, b, m, n, t, d, k, g, f, v, s, z, s-blends, l, l-blends, ch, sh, th, r, r-blends, vocalic r, and 2-5 syllable words!  Although these are made to address articulation concerns, I have also used these to work on fluency and language skills!

What will I have in my cart?  There are just so many great products out there!  These are a few of the products I am excited about!

Christmas & Winter No Prep Language from Ashley of Sweet Southern Speech-  This addresses a variety of language skills and is no prep!  I love no prep!  Who doesn't, right?  Just a few of the things it targets include: auditory memory, adjectives, compare and contrast, and categories!

Ice Cream Comprehension and Directions by Firefly Speech and Language- This looked looks like so much fun!  Even though it is not summer time, ice cream is really a year-long treat! This pack looks just as yummy as ice cream too! I love that it addresses both comprehension and following directions!

No Print Build a Scene Articulation from Speech Therapy Fun-  This NO PRINT pack has 9 scenes for September through May and provides reinforcement for kiddos while practicing: k, g, f, and v! I think my kiddos will be super excited to build a scene with my tablet! 

Articulation Sudoku from Talkin' with Twang-  To be honest, I have never played Soduku.  However, this just looks like a lot of fun that my kiddos would enjoy!  Plus, I love how unique this is!

Sam the Snake by Mia McDaniel- I have so many kiddos working on interdental lisps this year!  It is crazy how many I have this year.  Any tool I can find to help with this is HUGE for me!  I can't wait to see what Mia has in this no-print ebook!

Basic Vocabulary Bingo Bundle by Sara Wu of Speech is Beautiful- This 3-set bundle will be wonderful for my little kiddos still working on the basic vocabulary of food, animals, and household items.  Plus, I enjoy that I will be able to use it with my older kiddos to work on descriptions, and asking wh-questions.  I love when I can use an item in more ways than one!

Plus, I plan to buy A LOT of new clip art!  Will you be taking advantage of this super sale?  If so, what's in your Cart?  Click here for additional ideas and other great buys!

I’m excited to join in the fun and share 5 things you may not know about me. Thanks to Jessica from The Speech Space for hosting this linky party!  I’m pretty much an open book.  I put myself out there so I don’t know what all I may have already shared. 

1.        I’m a closet Court TV junkie!  My daughter sent me to the hospital at 23 weeks gestation.  I remained there on bed rest until her birth at 26 weeks.  During that time, I did not have much that I could do since anything that required the slightest bit of thinking power led to a headache.  After all, the position I had to remain on the bed required my feet above my head.  Therefore, I spent nearly a month doing nothing more than laying there watching Court TV and eating.

2.  I was born with birth defects- tracheal hypoplasia and laryngeal webbing.  I had to have immediate surgery after my birth so that I could breathe since my airway was the size of a pinprick. I had multiple follow-up surgeries to cut away scar tissue and to widen my airway as I grew up.  The last surgery I had was when I was 11 years old.  So, if you listen closely, you may detect my odd breathing pattern and a mild stridor

3.    Ice Skating scares me!  No, seriously!  I NEVER want to ice skate.  I have always thought it was beautiful and it is my favorite part of the Winter Olympics, but you will never catch me out on the ice!  I secretly think the first time I ever try I will break my ankles.  I have no clue where that fear came from.  It has always been there.  Does anyone know if fear of ice skating is a real phobia?!

4.    My mental “happy place” when I get stressed is a log cabin.  In my mind, it is surrounded by forest.  No real technology (like phones, computers, tv, etc.).  No noise.  No responsibility.  Just me, hot cocoa (and a wine cellar), fireplace, an old typewriter, and books! 

5.  I’m a clean freak!  I really can NOT stand clutter.  It makes my skin crawl and I have a hard time thinking straight.  My creativity is at an all-time low when the place is cluttered or messy.  In fact, when it is time to clean house, my husband calls me “Tornado Tami.”  You better believe the house will be clean and sanitized.  Now, even my little one runs away when I am in cleaning mode yelling “AHHHHH!  The tornado is coming!”  Hmmmm….

Holidays are a great time to score some wonderful deals on toys that encourage speech and language skills and family time! That is why I'm excited to join in on the Santa’s List Linky Party hosted by my friend, Ashley, of Sweet Southern Speech.

Christmas. Hanukkah. Kwanzaa.  It really doesn’t matter which holiday you celebrate in Winter, we all know that right after Thanksgiving there is that mad dash to the stores to get the super sales.  In our home, we celebrate Hanukkah, Christmas, and Yule.  You can say my daughter has been spoiled over the years.  Since our only immediate family here in Vegas is my Gambling Guru Grammy, we always fill out the various store wish lists for our scattered family members.  Here is my confession, when she was super little, I always thought about what would be a fun toy that would facilitate growth of speech and language skills (that I could also use later for work once she outgrows it),

Here are some wonderful toys that I would suggest, both personally and professionally, putting on Santa’s list to facilitate speech and language growth and quality family time:

1.)  BOOKS-  Books are great for all ages!  For the little ones, you can use them to build basic receptive and expressive vocabulary, prepositions, adjectives, wh-questions, etc.. as you talk about the pictures in the story book ("Look!  Santa is trying to come down the chimney.  See his boots? Show me Santa's boots.  Boy!  He will be dirty coming down that chimney...") For older children, the story vocabulary increases in complexity so they continue to increase vocabulary but begin using context clues to determine the meaning of the word or phrase.  They can also work on the higher level wh- questions such as how and why.

2.)  CAUSE and EFFECT Toys- These are great for the little itty bitty ones!  Especially those that are just developing language.  You can entertain for long periods of time while working on basic concepts such as colors, stop vs go, more, roll, pop, fast, etc.
3.)  PLAY SETS- So much language can be built from play sets such as doll houses, farms, Duplo sets, etc.. With the Duplo or block sets you can work on colors, prepositions, size, following directions, and prepositions when first creating the scene.  With all of the play sets you can continue to work on receptive and expressive language vocabulary, action words (verbs), basic concepts, following directions, and narrative skills.
4.)  REUSEABLE STICKER SETS- Play sets can get expensive and sometimes they are not easy to move around from location to location.  The reusable sticker sets by Melissa and Doug allow you to work on all the same skills as the play sets.  I love that they are reusable stickers so they can be used over and over for half the price of the play sets.  Plus,
they are easy to bring from location to location (including those long car trips).

5.)  BOARD GAMES- Board games are great for learning social language and bringing families together!  From board games, kids can learn that there are rules that must be followed such as turn-taking, eye contact, social exchanges ("It's your turn.  Oh wait. It's my turn.  Give me the dice, please"), which are all important skills for functional communication and conversational exchange. One game that is full of wonderful family fun and builds language is the game Headbandz.  While playing this game, the following language skills can be worked on: categories, descriptive concepts, and asking and answering questions.

6.)  GOLDIE BLOX- My daughter is in love with Goldie Blox!  If  you do not know about these sets, I would definitely suggest you check them out.  They were designed with teaching girls about engineering concepts.  However, boys can find entertainment with them too. The sets come with a book that explains the concepts and gives step by step directions (in a fun way!) of how to build the set.  It teaches higher level vocabulary and concepts while incorporating fun! It is a fun way to also incorporate social language exchanges (making requests, conversational exchange, etc..), following directions, addressing how and why explanatory concepts, and more.

Too often, myself included, it is easier to let our children play with the tablet.  We tell ourselves that they are still engaging in learning activities since they are using academic apps or apps created to encourage speech and language skills, but at the same time if we only provide them with technology we are missing wonderful experiences that we can enjoy with our children.  Family time with laughter and fun!  Teaching the art of conversation.  Learning opportunities that only can occur with the interaction of another person.  Those moments are sacred.  Those moments are what make us human and those moments fly by far too fast.  So when you are thinking of what to get your child for the holidays, think of the the activities and toys that would include YOU and PLAY with them. It makes for wonderful memories and natural opportunities to facilitate speech and language skills. 

I'm super excited for Halloween.  It is one of my favorite holidays! That is why I was chompin' at the bits to talk about ways to prepare our students and educate the neighbors on Speech Spotlights! To sum it up: 

In what other ways will I be bringing my favorite holiday into my speech room?  I will be using the new materials I created to target my kiddos goals and celebrate the festivities of the season all in one!
My new open ended games set includes 4 different games all with a Halloween theme!  Be the first to collect all the house accessories and trick or treaters to win!  Or use the game boards and be the first to get to the finish line.  Another option is to work on basic math skills by adding up the total amount of candy points collected at the end of the game.  The player with the most points, wins! I love that they are open-ended because then I can use them with any skills targeted!

I have a few kiddos working on conversational exchange, do you?  The Conversational Exchange Set includes a Venn diagram, conversational flow chart, dauber pages or play dough pages to cover when the students ask a question, respond to a question, or make a comment.  The set also includes suggested conversational topics, and a keep it on topic chart.

My Receptive and Expressive Language Builder works on many different skills!  With it you can target receptive identification, labeling, description, prepositions, pronouns, basic sentence structures, following directions, asking/answering questions (including yes/no questions), and more!  It includes Vocabulary Cards, Halloween Lingo Cards, I Have/Who Has Game, Sentence Builders, Description-Inference Cards, Recalling Details and Wh-questions, Barrier Games, and Manipulatives!

Of course, the next two weeks will include preparing my kiddos for Halloween night using the Social Story: On Halloween Night and practicing using the low-tech aac/advocacy/education cards I created.  You too can use my social story and the disability advocacy/low tech aac cards in this freebie!

Will you be doing something special for Halloween?  What will you be doing to celebrate Halloween in your speech room?
Thirteen bloggers are hiding--hiding on different blogs and hiding in the school. Can you find us all?  As you hop around from blog to blog be sure to write down who you found and where you found them.  Then, go back to Kim from Activity Tailor's blog to enter to win!

Over the summer, I met this truly talented SLP and I feel so fortunate that I did!  Please welcome my guest blogger, Lisette from Speech Sprouts!

Ever use consider the stage or auditorium as a great speech therapy tool?

I  believe that speech therapy can happen almost anywhere and every activity presents with great opportunities to teach speech and language skills. So what can you do with the stage or auditorium? 

Hide and Seek SLP Bloghop- Speech therapy is happening all over school!

Ready for some fun?

 I am teaming up with several SLP blogger buddies to bring you this Hide and Seek Bloghop!   Thank you so much to Kim of Activity Tailor for this creative idea and for organizing for us (She's awesome!)

Don't forget to read all the way to the bottom of this post to jot down who I am - and where I am hiding before hopping to the next post. Collect this information at each post because you'll need it to enter the awesome giveaway for some great new materials!

So... speech in the auditorium? Sure!  Here are some ideas:

 Story re-tell: target expressive language, articulation, fluency and literacy skills.

How much fun would it be for your kids to read a story, and then write and stage a skit or play? If you can,  conduct all the sessions on the stage to build anticipation. Grab a circle of chairs and maybe some large paper and markers to brainstorm ideas.  A project like this could last for weeks of therapy.

1. Take photos of your group at each stage of preparation, to put together a journal of your project later on! Kids can label and retell the story of their adventures. Everyone loves pictures of themselves.

2. Choose a familiar story to read, with enough characters so that each student gets a part, and one that would lend it self to simple staging. Fairytales and other simple stories will work well.

Discuss the setting, characters, and problem: Ask and answer wh? questions. Sequence the story. Predict. Infer. Talk about feelings. Discuss alternate endings. What would have happened if.....

Post words from the story that include your articulation targets. Use these as artic stimulus words. 

3. Have your students help you write a simple screenplay. Will the story have a traditional ending, or a surprise twist? 

4. Talk about staging, scenery and simple costumes. How will you make them? What materials will you need? 

Keep it simple so the kids can do the work themselves. Paper bag costumes, hats, headbands and box props are all inexpensive. Another opportunity for sequencing and following directions, as well as verbs and sentence structure. 

5. Spend a few sessions preparing the costumes and scenery. You can require your kids to ask for supplies, working on requesting and question structure. They can talk or write about what they did, using past tense, verbs, pronouns and sequencing again. 

6. Invite an audience- a younger class or parents always works well. Then give your show! What a great opportunity for kids who stutter to participate with scripted or choral speaking to enhance their fluency. 

Be sure to take photos for your journal and maybe even your yearbook. 

7. Have an after-party! A few simple snacks, and an opportunity to look at all the photos or video of your project. Well done!

Have you ever used the stage for speech and language? I would love to hear what you did!

I hope you are enjoying the hop. I want to say thank you again to Kim at Activity Tailor. This definitely cheered up my week!


Lisette’s home base is Speech Sprouts,  but today she’s in the:  AUDITORIUM!  

To enter the Hide and Seek Blog Hop raffle, collect the names of the participating blogs and where they are hiding and enter them here.

Hide and Seek SLP Bloghop- Speech therapy is happening all over school!

I LOVE Pirates!  I can’t wait to throw on my pirate’s hat, patch, and hook the kids into working on their speech and language skills.  Maybe it is the idea of treasure, or the funny way that they talk, but I have yet to find a kiddo that doesn’t enjoy “Talk like a Pirate” week!  Thanks to Tracey of Gold County SLP for hosting this fun linky party!

Are you planning to bring out the hat and hook?  If so, here are some items that I have in my store that may be of interest to you.

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Pirate-Play-Open-Ended-Games-2077408These three fun Open-Ended Pirate Games allow you to work on ANY skill and reinforce with this little treasure! In the pack, be the first to collect all of the map pieces, play a board game, or collect the most treasure!

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Prepositions-Pronouns-on-Pirate-Island-2086631Pirate Island targets prepositions and pronouns with a variety of materials.  Bingo games and dauber pages are included for both prepositions and pronouns.  The dauber pages are great for a no-prep homework option.  There is even a dice game for prepositions and hands-on manipulates and built-in sentence strips with the Pronoun Pirates! Pronoun Pirates is great for following directions (i.e. "Give her the barrel") and assisting with constructing sentences to include appropriate pronouns. 

Some other great finds include:
I love this storybook by Monae of  Monae's Speech and Language House.  I have this storybook and the kids love it! First of all, it has Pirates!  Plus, her stories come with additional pieces at the end of the story so that you can work on matching.  I also put the pieces on my carry around felt board folder and then use the additional pieces to work on sequencing, wh-questions, function, and description!
This vocabulary builder by LyndaSLP123 looks wonderful! Who doesn’t like collecting gems and jewels? I love that they kiddos collect treasure while expanding their vocabulary skills!
This Pirate themed Speech & Language Pack by Sounds Like Fun looks super comprehensive!  I love that it has pages that can be taken home for homework and that there is a craft involved!  
My kiddos enjoy using play dough in therapy.  What a creative and fun way to work on expected and unexpected behaviors and social skills by Smart Mouth SLP!

There are so many wonderful therapy tools to use in therapy.  Arrrrrr… you going to hook your kiddos in with Pirates?

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