5 Great Ways to Use Dry Erase Tape in Speech Therapy

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Have you all heard of dry erase tape? I have started seeing it pop up on some teaching forums and in the classrooms at my school, and it got me thinking how I could use it in my therapy sessions. This stuff is awesome, seriously!

Here are my favorite ways to use it in speech and language therapy:

1. As a visual cue

The possibilities are endless here. Draw pictures of people as a visual cue when working on “who” questions. Write out how to use an easy onset in fluency therapy. Write or draw a visual cue for articulation goals. The list goes on.

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2. As positive reinforcement

Have you seen a “I am working for” chart? You can use the dry erase tape as a quick, easy alternative. Write “I am working for (cars, bubbles, good news note to parent/teacher, etc) and the number of stars. When the student is staying on task/displaying positive behaviors, lean over and draw a dry erase star on their strip. This one works like a charm.

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3. As a scorecard

If you are playing a  game in speech therapy, and need to keep score, have the students keep score using their dry erase strip. This is great life skills practice for them and will keep them more engaged in the activity. Try using it with our popular Climb to the Top Game!

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4. As a following directions activity

The best part about this is it is so open ended you can use it for ANY group on the fly.

One step directions: Draw a circle

Two step directions: Draw a circle. Draw a fish.

Three step directions: Draw a circle, a fish, and a kite.

Directions with positional terms: Draw a balloon next to a puppy.

Directions with temporal concepts: Draw a frog after you write your name.

Attributes: Draw a man with a long nose and a big tall hat.

This list could go on endlessly, but the point is, the kids have a blast with it!

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5. As a turn taking/cooperation activity

I love love love doing this with my social skills groups. You would be surprised how many students struggle with the concept of teamwork and cooperation to meet a common goal. What I like to do is a following directions game (similar to examples typed out above, but include members of the group in each step.

Kyle, draw a circle on Mary’s strip.

First, Mary should draw an animal on her strip, then draw something that you eat on Kyle’s strip.

The goal is to all follow the directions to create the correct combination of items on every persons card (so if the goal at the end is to each have a shape, an animal, and a food item drawn on each strip)

This one can be a real challenge but the sense of pride the students have when working together is amazing!

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One of the best things about dry erase tape is that it is low commitment! When it is time to peel it up it can be easily removed and doesn’t leave any sticky residue to clean up on your table.

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Have fun and let us know if you have a great idea for using dry erase tape in speech therapy!

Ana and Lacy

**This post was not sponsored or endorsed by any company**

 

 

Spring and Easter Freebies by Target Goal Area

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Hi Everyone!

Things are finally warming up, and it is time to start planning your therapy activities for the Easter/spring season! Below you will find all of our favorite spring freebies organized by target goal area for your convenience! We hope you enjoy them as much as we have!

Articulation

/r, s, l, sh, th/ Easter Print and Go Activities https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Articulation-Print-Go-1204293

/r/ Easter Egg Hunt Articulation Game https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/FREEBIE-Easter-Egg-Hunt-Articulation-R-Sound-Game-Activity-601329

/s, r/ Articulation Jelly Bean Jars https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Articulation-Jelly-Bean-Jars-Freebie-1786159

/s blends/ Easter Dominos https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Dominoes-for-s-blends-Freebie-1188651

/l and l blends/ Spring Color By Symbol https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-Articulation-Color-by-Symbol-Hidden-Images-L-and-Lblends-Sample-3072396

/l/ Spring Crossword https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Freebie-Spring-Articulation-Crossword-1128455

/l/ Spring Ladybug Craftivity https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Ladybug-Articulation-Craftivity-l-Free-1778299

/k, g, s, l/ Pot of Gold Craftivity https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Searching-for-Gold-Interactive-Articulation-Sensory-Bin-2446884

/f, k, g/ Easter Egg Articulation https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Egg-Articulation-FREEBIE-1765302

/k/ Jumping Rabbit Game https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Free-K-Articulation-Jumping-Rabbit-Game-Companion-3633383

/k, g/ Hungry Bunny Crunch https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/FREE-Hungry-Bunny-Crunch-K-G-Edition-3062985

/p/ Print and Go for Early Sounds https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/FREEBIE-Spring-Articulation-PRINT-GO-worksheet-for-Early-Sounds-p-3671990

 

Phonology

Phonemic Awareness for Early Developing Sounds https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Free-Blend-Color-Phonemic-Awareness-of-SpringEaster-Early-Developing-Sounds-2405747

Spring Final Consonant Deletion https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-Flowers-Speech-Freebie-3135095

Bug Themed Final Consonant Deletion https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Bug-Invasion-Articulation-Freebie-1692565

Final Consonant Deletion/Fronting /k/ practice https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Quack-Go-Back-Speech-Therapy-Game-with-Final-k-Cards-766227

Minimal Pairs /k, g, t, d, sh, ch/ https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Articulation-Minimal-Pairs-K-and-G-T-and-D-CH-and-SH-698675

 

Language

Critical Thinking/Would you rather https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Would-You-Rather-Spring-and-Easter-FREE-1764398

Easter Pronouns https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Pronoun-Activity-225684

Spring 3rd Person Pronouns https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-People-Sentences-3rd-person-pronouns-545449

Easter Sorting (Nouns) https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Activity-Sorting-Nouns-Kindergarten-First-Special-Education-Autism-1162242

Easter Matching https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/FREE-Spring-Worksheets-Easter-Activities-Tracing-Lines-Matching-Sped-1206247

Building Sentences Easter https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/FREE-Easter-Activity-Building-Sentences-3087238

Spring Listen Up Following Directions https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-Listen-Up-Following-Directions-FREEBIE-2371862

Spring Following Directions https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-Showers-Following-Directions-652995

Spring Temporal Directions https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Temporal-Spring-Directions-FREEBIE-1787237

Spring Attributes Cards https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-Attribute-Cards-Freebie-664190

WH Questions and Scenes https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Free-Easter-Wh-Questions-and-Scenes-3011733

Spring WH Questions https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-What-Where-When-Why-and-How-Questions-FREEBIE-622189

Spring WH Questions Mini-Books https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-WH-Question-Mini-Books-1771355

Easter Egg Sequence Cards https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Freebie-Easter-Egg-Sequence-Cards-1767942

Spring Sequencing https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/FREE-Spring-Sequencing-Cut-and-Glue-Worksheets-1762283

Positional Word- Where is Bunny https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Where-is-Bunny-Positional-Word-Practice-FREEBIE-1764582

Spring Prepositions https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-Prepositions-1773740

I Spy Vocabulary Activity https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-I-Spy-616675

Easter Vocabulary/Writing https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Words-Free-1516595

Spring Vocabulary and Oral Expression Cards https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-How-Many-Can-You-Name-Conversation-Oral-Expression-Cards-FREEBIE-1762439

Spring Vocabulary and Word Wall Cards https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Spring-Vocabulary-Word-Wall-Cards-1666248

Spring Absurdities https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-Time-Absurdities-648324

Spring Multiple Meanings https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Multiple-Meanings-for-Spring-Freebie-1771926

Spring Categories and Wh Questions https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/FREEBIE-Spring-Language-Categories-and-Wh-Question-activities-659181

Spring Verb Sort https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Spring-Verb-Sort-Past-Present-Future-1128251

 

Pragmatics

Spring Idioms https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Social-Skills-Idioms-Spring-Bugs-1768840

Easter Egg Inferences https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Egg-Inferences-227489

Logic Puzzles for Inferencing https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Beginning-Logic-Puzzles-and-Activities-1783106

Facts Vs. Opinion Spring Break https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Fact-or-Opinion-Spring-Break-2910401

Pragmatic Problem Solving (Higher Level) https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/CRITICAL-THINKING-Easter-Hink-Pinks-Hinky-Pinkies-223996

Easter Jokes https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Jokes-Pragmatic-language-multiple-meaning-words-humor-1788206

Reading/Writing

Graphic Organizers https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/If-I-Were-the-Easter-Bunny-Freebie-1768232

Easter Reading Comprehension and Jelly Bean Book Marks https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Reading-Comprehension-Passage-and-Jelly-Bean-Bookmarks-1189965

Easter Task Cards for Reading Comprehension https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Freebie-Task-Cards-for-Reading-Comprehension-Skills-3679018

Easter Main idea and Details (English and Spanish) https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Main-Idea-Easter-2-4-1764990

Easter Graphic Organizers https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Egg-Reading-Summary-Graphic-Organizers-1786502

Creative Writing Adopt a Peep https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/All-About-My-Peep-Free-Easter-Writing-1687690

AAC Goodies

Things I did this Spring Break Board https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Speech-Therapy-Things-I-did-this-Spring-Break-Communication-Board-FREEBIE-autism-2465109

Easter Egg Coloring Communication Board https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Speech-Therapy-Easter-Egg-Coloring-Communication-Board-FREEBIE-autism-nonverbal-2463402

 

Open ended: for mixed groups and all those other goals!

Easter Egg Open Ended Word Book https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Egg-Word-Book-619177

Easter Open Ended Board Game https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Speech-Board-Game-Freebie-3102583

100 Trials Sheets 1 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/FREE-Spring-Articulation-For-100-Trials-in-Speech-Therapy-3658665

100 Trials Sheets 2 https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/FREE-Spring-100-Articulation-Trials-3049210

Easter Candy Corn Challenge https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Easter-Candy-Corn-Challenge-1195846

Jelly Bean Challenge https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/100-Trials-Jelly-Bean-Challenge-1155076

 

Do you have a freebie you think belongs on this list? Comment on this post or email us at speechinthesand@gmail.com

Happy spring therapy planning!

Ana & Lacy

 

Avoiding Burnout as a School Based SLP

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When I was in grad school, my parents met a flight attendant who was a former SLP. She told them that she just wanted to do something that wasn’t so stressful and overwhelming, and that she just couldn’t take it anymore.

As a student in the field, hearing this was disconcerting to say the least. I remember speaking to my internship supervisor about it at the time, and I recall that she reassured me that as long as you practice self-care, it is a fulfilling and manageable career, and you can avoid burnout. She was right. Some weeks are hard and others are wonderful, but the truth is, I love this field and I am SO glad I stuck with it.

These are some things that help me avoid burnout despite the everyday stress we all encounter.

Keep a hard copy calendar:

There is so much more to being a school SLP than diagnostics and therapy. We have duties, district level meetings, IEP meetings, BIP meetings, and the list goes on. Sure, your district might have an online system that reminds you when IEPs are coming due, but keeping a hard copy calendar will help you to keep track of EVERYTHING that is coming in one spot so much more efficiently. You will have a better grasp on when you are available and what things need your attention now vs. what can wait for tomorrow.

Don’t re-invent the wheel:

There are so many fabulous materials designed for Speech Language Pathologists, and those options just keep expanding thanks to websites like teacherspayteachers.com, where you can buy quality, affordable materials designed by other SLPs to target any age level or goal area. Don’t waste time making elaborate materials if you are feeling overwhelmed. Keep your materials organized by goal area and/or seasonally so that each year it gets easier to grab and go with your therapy sessions.

See our store here  for some time-saving materials you can use year round!

Ask for support:

Most of us have someone overseeing us at the administrative level, or at the very least a network of colleagues in other schools in the district. If you are sinking, they can’t always afford to send you full time relief, but they can almost always ask if anyone has availability to come help administer some screenings/evaluations for you to give you a chance to catch up. Just be prepared to return the favor if you ever find yourself all caught up! Our administrators don’t know we are experiencing burnout if we don’t communicate our needs to them.

Remind yourself of your professional successes:

Let’s face it. We didn’t go into the school setting because we thought we would get rich! You must have a real passion for helping people to do the work we do day in and day out, when other areas of our field (PRN Work, Private practice) could (in most cases) afford us a more comfortable lifestyle. Reflect regularly on where you have made a difference, even on a small scale. Do you have a group you’ve seen great progress in? Is there a student who has a voice through AAC because of you? Bravo! You are making a difference, in big ways and in small ways, every. single. day. Don’t let the stress of meetings and duties outweigh the joy that comes from that.

Don’t forget about your personal life:

Don’t lose sight of the things in your personal life that give you joy. These are the exact things that will refresh you when you feel the weight of your workload bearing down. Try to set time aside at least twice a week to stay refreshed by appreciating these small joys. For me, it is cooking a good meal, or playing a board game with my husband. For you it might be watching a TV show in the evening, or working out/meditating. No matter what it is for you, make sure that you take care of yourself so that you can continue doing the great work you do to take care of others.

If all else fails, remember that summer is just a few short months away!! 😀

Ana and Lacy
Do you have a tip for avoiding burnout in our field? Comment below to let us know!

Addressing Anxiety in Fluency Therapy

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I think it is important to talk a little bit about why we tackle speaking anxiety with our fluency students. A good number of you ask the question, “Is this in our scope of practice?” and the short answer is, absolutely.

So very many of our fluency students experience anxiety, and anxiety leads to muscle tension, which leads to MORE stuttering.

Anxiety

We have touched on using guided relaxation to manage muscle tension, but how do we help our fluency students learn to manage their feelings of stress and anxiety so that they can become more fluent?

Recognizing and understanding anxiety does not come naturally to children, so it helps to guide them through what anxiety is in general before just diving head first into talking to them about their speaking anxiety.

  1. Talk to about what worries are.IMG_1757.jpg
  2. Talk about negative feelings that worries cause and the difference between negative and positive feelings.IMG_1758.jpg
  3. Talk about how we can get rid of worries and turn negative feelings into positive feelingsIMG_1761.jpg

For these and other great fluency worksheets, please consider purchasing our Stuttering Made Simple Resource, which can be found here or click any of the pictures above.

Some students will pick speaking anxiety as an example, and if that is what they pick it is fine to to talk through it with them. If they pick something else, such as a fear of the dark, test taking, etc. that is still extremely effective. Although it may SEEM off topic, you are helping the student learn important strategies that they can then carry over into fluency related tasks.

If you feel that the topics of conversation are out of your area of expertise and require more intensive, non speech related therapy beyond just discussing simple positive and negative emotions, that is when I personally would choose to involve a social worker or mental health professional. Working as a collaborative team is important in these instances. Make sure the professional knows your fluency goals and that they are respectful of those goals as they move forward with their therapy. Keep in contact and collaborate as a team with any mental health professionals involved in the care of your client. This may require a signed release of information, which can be completed at the discretion of the parent or guardian of the client or by the client themselves if they are an adult.

It is important that we do not ignore anxiety as it is an integral part of fluency therapy.

As always, if you have any questions about this or any fluency related topic, feel free to comment on this post or email us at speechinthesand@gmail.com!

Ana

 

Tuesday Tip: Trimming Velcro Without the Annoying Residue

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To say we use “a lot” of Velcro as speech pathologists would be putting it lightly! If you’re like me, you like to buy the big spool of Velcro from the craft store, both to save money  and because you can cut it down to the exact size you need, which prevents waste.

**bonus tip: most of the major craft stores WILL accept the 40-60% off one regularly priced item coupon for Velcro rolls**

The residue that would be left behind on my scissors after I trimmed my Velcro used to drive me crazy, and I hated trying to scrub it all off. One day I heard about using cooking spray to prevent this issue, and let me tell you, it WORKS!

Lay down a paper towel or piece of scrap paper, place your open scissors down, and lightly spray the exposed blades.

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Trim your Velcro to the desired size.

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Rinse the cooking spray off of the scissors using warm water.

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Dry the blades thoroughly to prevent rusting.

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Hopefully this tip helps make your prep and planning days a little easier!

Ana