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Monday, April 29, 2013

Beach Themed Language Unit is Now Available

I can never shop early for Christmas or birthdays because whenever I have a gift for someone I can't wait to give it to them.  I've reacted the same way about this beach unit. I promised myself I would get away from the computer and enjoy my weekend. However, that was not to be my reality.  I couldn't wait to share this with you, so I finished it and uploaded it to my online shops last night.  

You can purchase this here at Teachers pay Teachers or here at Teachers Notebook.  Wherever you prefer to do your online shopping :)

In celebration of Better Speech and Hearing Month it will be on sale for 20% off the entire month of May!   Sale starts Wednesday May 1st -May 31st.

Now that it is finished I would like to tell you a little more about it.  

I think this is appropriate for ages 4-10. ( I have a very knowledgeable SLP friend, who says 4-12.) Regardless let's say Pre-K through 5th/6th.  The bottom line is it will work for many of your students.

I've included two open ended games, a board game and a simple card game, in this unit.  I am also selling them separately if you're only interested in the games.  To purchase the games only click here for TpT or here for TN.

This unit targets receptive and expressive language skills. Certainly since it is a beach themed language unit all pictures and questions are beach related, so you could even work on topic maintenance if you have a student with that goal.

Here is detailed information about each language skill targeted: 

1. The 20 Attributes task cards give a visual of the object and asks 5 WH questions about the object features. This is a common goal of many of our kids.  You may choose to use these cards as is or only use certain portions of the questions to target other benchmarks such as labeling, functioning, associations, etc.  You know your students' needs.

2. There are 20 Compare and Contrast task cards.  You are given one visual stimulus but the question asks for a comparison of two things.  The child must mentally recall the other object.  They must state like features and then state how they are different.  

3. There are 20 Following Directions tasks.  (The directions are not on cards, but just listed on a separate page for you to use.) This unit includes a basic background scene of sand, water, sky and 2 pages of pictured objects the students will place/glue on to the background scene. You may print this on regular paper and let them cut and paste, or you may wish to print this on card stock and laminate it to make it reusable.  You can use double sided tape to stick it to the page, then remove the tape residue ;)  

4. There are 18 Thinking and Reasoning task cards.  These are basically questions that I think go beyond a simple WH question.  For example:  Besides a beachball, what other ball can you play with at the beach? Any logical answer would be acceptable such as volleyball or passing a football.  Tennis would not be appropriate.  I have supplied an answer key with this one to give you an idea of where I was going with this task :)

5. There are 12 Inferring and Problem Solving task cards.  Each card states a situation from which the student must infer the problem.  Then they must solve the problem. Finally they relate it to personal  experiences of their own.  These cards could also be used as conversation starters.  

Simply use any of these task cards with either of the two games I provided or with another of your choosing.  Summer therapy at your fingertips!  

Be sure to follow me and leave feedback.  You are rewarded with store credit when you do!

I hope you will have fun using these in therapy with your kids!  

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Sneak Peek at new Beach Unit!

I had been toying with the idea of creating some language units, so I decided to go head first into it, which is how I tend to do things...just dive in, which is not advice I'd give to anyone.  I hope to get this uploaded this week, but in the meanwhile you can have a sneak peek!

I would call this a "whole language" unit that is Beach themed and will come with 2 open ended games and 5 language targets using task cards. Language skills targeted are Attributes, Compare/Contrast, Thinking/Reasoning, Inferring/Problem solving, and Follow Directions.  Here are a few pictures to give you an idea of all the goodness inside!

The two games are a board game and a card game: 

Attributes Task Cards:

Compare and Contrast Task Cards:

Thinking and Reasoning Task Cards:

Inferring and Problem Solving:

Following Directions:

This will be sold as a Beach Themed Language Unit in my Teachers pay Teachers store and my NEW Teachers Notebook store (Little Shop of SLP). Look for it later this week.  It will sell as a download for $6.00.

I am very excited to share this with you because there are so many ways you can use this!  

This is how I do whole language therapy!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Why I Make Open Ended Games

You know one of my favorite things to create is open ended games.

I love to think up games that would be fun to play but yet quick enough that it can be completed in one 20-30 minute therapy session.  I dislike starting a game and having to stop before somebody wins.  It leaves me feeling, well, "unfinished" and certainly is a major disappointment for the students playing.  We all want to know who wins. Right?

I love games that take little time to actually play on your turn so you lose very little therapy time.  A player's turn should be less than 30 seconds in my opinion.  You are not wasting precious therapy time in a nonessential task.  The point of using a game is not to play a game but to keep my kids interested  and attending.

I love games that motivate them to participate.  A basic requirement in all the games I create is that the student will complete a speech or language task prior to taking a turn in the game.

I love games that allow you to select your own targets.  Those tasks can be whatever you need them to do: Say their target word 5 times; use the word in a phrase 3 times; create a sentence with their target word or use 2 target words in one sentence, etc.  For language tasks you might require them to label objects or pictures; state functions; make associations;  state antonyms or synonyms; define words, etc.  State regular/irregular plurals or verbs; use them correctly in sentences; subject-verb agreement.  Whatever your target is you can address while using an open ended game!

I love games that can be used with any session/group.   When I was working in the schools, I became frustrated grouping kids for therapy.  You do not have the freedom to schedule groups according to your need.  You must schedule kids according to everyone else's schedules.  Then you end up having to target speech and language goals in one group session.  With open ended games this is not problematic.  Everyone can play the same game but work on their individual goals!

I love the versatility of mixing and matching games and targets.  In the past I would buy games that were wonderful but would only target one skill.  There were lots of R, S and L games, but what about the Sh and CH or F I needed. That is not a problem  now with open ended games ;)  Every child gets to play that game.  (That was the single push that started my path in creating games and software.  I had a child that couldn't play the game the other kids were playing because it didn't meet her needs.)

I love that it takes less storage space!  Who has endless storage? Who even has a dedicated room to call your own?  I love that I can make little games that takes up little space to store and that I only need one of that game.  I love that I can pull basic target stimuli to use with any of the games!

My list goes on and on but I think you get the gist of my reasoning for creating and using open ended games.

If you are not familiar with my open ended games but would like to see some just click this link:

Have FUN in therapy!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Blooming into Spring Sale!

Sorry for the late notice but I've been gone on a "Girls Trip" this week and just getting home!  

Everything in my store will be 20% off!  This includes the shipped hard goods too!

The sale will be going on Sunday, April 7th, and Monday, April 8th!  

Oops! I forgot the link to my store it is here.
I hope you can take advantage of the savings and pick up some of those items on your wishlist!

Have a great week!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

April Fools Day Winners!

I must say this has been one the better April Fools Days that I've ever spent. Thanks to everyone who played along. I hope you had as much fun as I did.

I want to announce the games that had the "April Fools" images and the SLPs who won them:

1. WH Question Game-- Mary A. Pitt and Speech Musings (a tie in email arrival times so they both received the game)

2. Gold Rush--Rita West

3. Back to the Future Verb Tense--Sally Hayes

4. Hunny Bunny Rhyming--Carol Ricky

5. Card Yatchzee --no one found it, so the 1st person to email me that they'd like to have it gets it!

Again thanks so much for playing this game with me!

UPDATE: Linda Windholtz just emailed me and won the Card Yatchzee...early bird gets the worm!

Monday, April 1, 2013

3 Games left to win

The Gold Rush game has been won.  Six people found the "April Fools" in that game.  The winner has been notified and it will be posted tomorrow, along with the order of emails received!

April Fools Day game update

ATTENTION: the Wh Question Game has been won, but there are 4 other games still to be found!!

Keep looking for those April Fools!  There are still 4 more games to be found and given away!!

I'm having fun are you?