Saturday, August 17, 2013

Zombie Inference Cards

I don't know were everyone else falls on the subject, but I love making my kids make inferences and love zombies almost as much as they do!  Last May, one of my second graders, couldn't think up the word "alien" but called it a "zombie" and did the cutest face with gestures and zombie moans and everything!  It was was adorable and was one of those "me without my video camera" moments.  I knew then that I had to make a Zombie unit.  I've actually been working on this one on and off for most of the summer (I got distracted by my Halloweentown unit) and finished to get this up for the back to school sale.

40 inference cards are included.  Some of the inferences have more than one "right" answer to promote flexible thinking skills.  Game cards are included.

Check it out on TPT!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Candy Corn Synonyms & Back to School Sale

As I was browsing TPT and double checking my wishlist for the upcoming sale, I found this great clip art and remembered the activity I was planning on making.  This is an incredibly simple activity based on all of the pinterest inspired paint strip activities.  It's meant to be a quick and easy, low planning therapy activity, because we really all do need more of those!

Candy Corn Synonyms 
(link to TPT)

A word is written on the top of a piece of candy corn.  Students either independently or using the word bank write two synonyms for each word on the card.  If you laminate the cards and use dry erase markers you can do the activity over and over again.  A total of 18 synonym triplets are included.

As mentioned above, the big back to school sale is happening this week!  Check out my store on TPT and get your wishlists ready!  All of my items are 20% off and don't forget to enter the promo code for the extra 8%.  If your wishlist is looking anything like mine, that 8% really can add up!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Understanding Sentences with Jewel Collection Game

I'm always looking for more simple ways to work on simple auditory comprehension and responding to questions about verbally given information since it's such a critical skill for classroom participation and comprehension of classroom materials.

I did something a little different with this unit, I kept the therapy stimulus materials completely separate from the game materials.  I did this because I wanted both the game and the therapy materials to be as flexible as possible and also because I wanted to save peoples color ink by not doing color on every page.  

Check it out on TPT!

A total of 90 therapy cards are included (game cards are not counted).  Each card has three questions so you can pick and choose to target specific question types or you can ask each student in a group one question about the same sentence.  I really like asking multiple students questions about the same sentence because it engages students in the entire session and they think about each question for an opportunity to help a friend.  I also vary the order I ask questions in to continuously engage students.

All question types are not pictured here.
Questions include:
Who, What, When, Where, Why, How Many, choice questions and sequential questions.  

Once again, I've included a list of sample Common Core and Minnesota State standards that this unit addresses.

The jewel game is pretty simple to play and requires no reading.  All jewel cards are face down on the table.  Students attempt to collect as many jewels as possible.   If they get an X card they don't put it in their treasure chest.  The student with the most jewels at the end of the game wins!

Each shape of jewel is in all 5 colors.

I'm really excited for this game in particular, collected jewels are in the treasure chests.  The jewels are out of sight and you can limit the counting of jewels every turn, yet the treasure chest gives your fidgeting kiddos something to hang onto. 
Directions for folding and laminating to have open treasure chests are included in the unit.
If this is something you can use, head over to TPT and grab it!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Halloween Articulation Inferences Activity

I know it seems early for Halloween, but if any of you are like me it might take some time to get everything printed and ready to go for the holiday, and I'm planning on a back to school sale at some point so you can pick them up for a deal!  As one of my previewers for the unit said - Halloween seems to come really fast after the school year starts!

I, as many of us do, have students working on both articulation and language goals or groups that are mixed with the two goals.  Articulation is self explanatory, but language you can do inference and word retrieval skills.  I am always looking for activities to meet both areas because it means we spend more time in the session working and less time shuffling materials.  My students in mixed groups also enjoy all being able to do the same thing and I also like it because there is always one student who wants to do anyone's work but their own.  This activity is designed to use for either or both need areas.

I have made three separate Halloween Articulation Inferences activities. (Linked to my TPT store)
Set 1 has K, G, L and vocalic L
Set 2 has TH, SH, CH and J sounds
Set 3 has S, Z, R and vocalic L
The Complete Set has all sounds listed above, but is a bundle price for 20% off the price of all three.

Each sound has 32 question cards, most cards have inference questions but there are a few holiday trivia questions.  That means each set has 128 therapy cards plus game cards!  The complete set has 384 therapy cards.

The level of difficulty of the inferences varies within each unit so word banks are included so you can vary the level of difficulty as needed for your students.  Blank word banks are also included so you can mix and match cards for your language students.  Each card is labeled by phoneme so you can quickly resort the cards.  The vowel sounds are labeled as VR and VL.

Two types of cards have therapy questions on them - House cards and green and orange tree cards.  16 of each type of card are in each articulation set.

This unit marks the start of something new I'm doing - including a list of standards addressed with the unit.  The list of standards is an example of what standards might be addressed, but please keep in mind that others may be addressed.  You should use your expertise and clinical judgment about the needs and goals of your students.  My intention is to provide a jumping off point and a quick reference for all the busy therapists out there!  I included Common Core Standards because that is what most people use and the Minnesota State Standards (since I am in MN and I look them up anyway). 

Of course there is a simple game included to enhance student interest.  The play is fairly simple: each student is trying to get the most different cards to make up their town, they can count each kind of house and tree only one time.  The student with the biggest town at the end wins!  Street strips are included for your students to put their houses on.  Special cards are lose a house and take an extra turn.  The extra turn cards can be added to the town.
 Halloween is my favorite holiday and one of the few holidays that seems universal for my multicultural, multilingual student population (who doesn't like free candy, anyway!).  Out of my 55 kids last year, only one didn't celebrate Halloween.  I'm super excited to start using this and to break out my Halloween stickers!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Dr. Seuss DIY Activity

 New game DIY idea!  It has all of my favorite attributes of good speech games: cheap, easy, flexible and has cute pictures.  Really, what else are we looking for?

When I went to Target today, I was distracted by the dollar spot (as usual).  I found the cutest Dr. Seuss border.  Since one of my students with an ASD would probably spend most of the therapy session staring at the bulletin board (or tearing it down in excitement), using it as intended isn't a realistic plan for me.  My next idea was to cut it up and make a game out of it. 

Next I laminated all of the pieces and cut them out (again). 

I like fairly small edges on my lamination so I typically send my cards through the laminator again to reseal the edges.  It's also a great trick if after some student loving your edges open back up.  Pop it through and you're good to go.  I do this all the time and my laminator is fine.  Since the laminating sheet is stuck to your card, the plastic won't wrap around the wheel and destroy your laminator.  That's what happens when you put a page in backwards or cut the pouch first.  I killed one laminator that way and am not ever planning on repeating that activity.

I cut of 3 individual borders in the pack for 24 cards.

Finally, you have cards with cute Dr. Seuss pictures on one side and blank on the back.  I am planning on using these by writing on the backs with dry erase markers. 

I have so many ideas about how to use these cards:
1. Points games - write numbers 0-5 on the backs and see who ends up with the most points at the end of the session
2. Gotcha games - student collect as many Dr. Seuss cards as they can but if they get one with a star (sad face ect) on the back they don't get a card that turn and see who can get the most.
3. Articulation Word practice
4. Language activities with plurals and past tense verbs
5. Reusable reinforcer - students collect 5 or so pictures and then get to play a game or pick something from the prize box
6. Behavior visual, students start with three pictures and can earn and lose pictures throughout the session depending on their ability to follow rules

Dry erase markers make the possibilities are endless!  
If you don't want endless possibilities use a sharpie on a few games - you get enough border in one pack for 80 cards and still have only spent a dollar.

Of course the secondary thrill is in having plenty of Dr. Seuss cards left over to give to my one student as motivators/stims. 

How would you use these cards?

This is one of my favorite back to school finds.  Has anyone else found anything they're particularly excited about?

Saturday, August 3, 2013

August 2013 SLP Link Up


Wow has summer flown by!!  I can't believe that it's August already!  As of now I have one more week of ESY services.  5.5 hours of student contact plus progress notes and data entry.  (I may or may not be counting down).  Then I have two beautiful weeks off before I officially go back on the 26th. 

I was very excited to see the August Link-UP on All Y'all Need.  I love reading about other things going on the the lives of my fellow bloggers, especially since I think we all need an occasional reminder that non-speech related things might actually happen.  I also am excited to share mine with you.

So here are my big three things for August!

The dead elliptical, the plastic needs to be removed so we can scrap the metal bits.
Buying: I am buying two big things, a new (to me) elliptical trainer since mine has finally run out of it's nine lives.  To give you some perspective on it's age - I remember it from middle school and adopted it out of my parents house.  Today my dad confirmed that the part we had welded back together last time failed again and Monday there will be shopping!  Now if only I had the money to replace the orange carpet (of doom) that the elliptical trainer resides on.

My other big purchase is a new patio door.  I've had it sealed up since last fall and have missed being able to go out on my deck this spring and summer.  I'm excited since I am going to choose to assume that the new door won't lock me outside as the rotten bits change it's level.  I'm two years post the foreclosure purchase, so I'm hoping that I will finish up these things soon.

Trying: Tunisian Crochet, because I clearly need a new way to play with yarn...  Last weekend I was assisting one of my friends with a pretty ridiculous yarn purchase (and by assisting I clearly mean cheering her on and participating - those who play with yarn will understand.  In a stunning show of support, my mom suggested additional yarn storage today).  Anyway, while shopping we both impulsively bought Tunisian crochet hooks (double ended or long).  I am enjoying the mix of knitting and crochet that it provides and frequently doing and undoing rows in my confusion.  It's nice to have a new challenge.  Below is a picture of my first Tunisian project.

Not perfect, but definitely interesting.

And finally, Speeching! As I said above, I will have two weeks off in August, but at least one day will be spent organizing in the speech room.  I have been slowly carrying in my summer thrift store purchases and just today finished cutting out everything I currently have laminated. I need to figure out where to put all of my new stuff and sort through the things currently occupying my shelves.  I also have several TPT units in the works that I want to finish.  I have a massive articulation/inferencing unit designed to hit mixed needs groups/students that I've been working on and hope to finish soon.  I will also likely continue thrift store shopping (I have been on a ROLL lately with great finds) and checking back to school ads for good deals on back to school items.  I do have two weeks off and intend to have at least a few work-free days!

My big tip on back to school sales!  Office Max allows you to get 20 of the great sale items with teacher id and Office Depot allows 2/3 times the limit (it seems to depend on who's checking you out..)  You do have to join the free teacher clubs, but in my opinion it's been worth it.   Also double check before you pay since every item above the normal limit has to be manually changed, I have stood there for 10 minutes while the poor employee figured out how to refund and re-ring me for items at the correct prices.

The pile of things that have yet to make it too work.  The drawers were at goodwill and came with a bonus surprise of a couple yarn darning needles way up on the inside that I found when I was cleaning it off!
Do any of you have anything big happening this month?