Roll A Pirate Name

For many years, my family has gone to Hilton Head for a week in the summer. And I mean extended family which means cousins and Mimi too. There’s a lot of walking on the beach, naps, reading, and competitive mini-golf. This year we’re mixing things up a bit and heading to the Charleston area. I can’t wait! The Carolina coasts have a rich pirate history and there tends to be a lot of pirate themed stuff especially for the younger crowd (like mini-golf through shipwrecks and treasure). Which is probably why I’ve had pirates on the brain when I was

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Establishing Sounds in Isolation

Sometimes I feel like I have an uphill battle. Although I see my students in a (private) school setting, in essence they are private practice clients which means “selling” is a part of my job. And since I’m seeing the kids on their own, what they report back is often the first impression parents have of speech therapy.  Which means I need to walk a fine line between work that looks like work and work that looks more like fun. The evaluations themselves are working against me. No matter how good I am at building rapport, you have to admit

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Print & Go: Picnic Theme

Who else is seeing students this summer? I have one location that has NO space and I was going to work outside. Lovely if the weather is good, but brutal in our NC heat (and let’s not discuss cancelling speech due to rain?) Happily, we’ve worked out an alternative for some days. I wanted some fun, quick sheets for my kiddos willing to hang in with me.  I know they’d rather be at the pool or playground, so I made sure to add a game component. They’re loving these Artic Print & Go picnic theme sheets! These are print and

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Attendance and Data Collection 2018-19 FREEBIE

I always have these grand ideas of filing away and reorganizing all of my materials before I check out for the summer (clients). Ha! By the time progress notes are finished, I am more than happy to shut the door and say “I’ll get to it later.” With the idea that some bored, rainy summer day, I’ll forgo a matinee and popcorn and head it to clean. It never happens. But, what I can do to feel a little more on top of things is print out a copy of next year’s attendance sheet and a bunch of data collection

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Teaching Trading Skills in Speech Therapy

Have you watched kids interacting in real life? They are in a constant state of negotiation. They make deals about who will go first, who gets to be which role, who does which chore. They trade snacks, lunches, cards and little treasures. It’s a really sophisticated skill. And it requires a lot of social acumen and language ability—two areas our kids are often lacking in. It’s a good thing to work on so that they aren’t taken advantage of, but also so they don’t bully their way into getting what they want either. This year I bought a big bag

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I Keep Repeating Myself

So much of speech and language therapy is repeating yourself. Repeating prompts, repeating instructions, repeating the same vocabulary or word list. But one area we tend to feel the need for “new” is books and it’s one of the most important places to keep repeating ourselves.  If you have children of your own, you know how kids will get fixated on a particular book and/or character and you will read it until you have to hide it just for a single night off.  I remember a night in a hotel and my children were having a really tough time settling

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Summer Speech Therapy for Students Who Stutter

It’s not unusual for me to get a request to see a student who stutters over the summer. I’m guessing it might be because the stress of the school year increased their disfluencies, or maybe they didn’t want the attention of being pulled from class during the school year. Whatever the reason may be, I actually prefer it. “Flying the plane while you build it.” This quote sums up a lot of what we do, but is perhaps particularly apt here. To me, summer is often the closest I have to building the plane while we’re on the ground since

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Why Not a Worksheet?

You know what (teachers and) SLPs love about worksheets? You print and go. There’s no mess. Plus, you have something to send home to show, 1) yes, we had speech today, 2) yes, we are still working on that goal and 3) please remember to work on this at home too. You know what kids hate about worksheets? They’re work and they’re boring. No big news flash here, right? But there are happy mediums. I loved Highlights growing up—the hidden pics and all the other puzzles. Well, basically those are worksheets. So the trick, especially at this time of year,

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Summer Speech Schedules that Keep You Sane

I had a few years of summer speech that left me frazzled.  Trying to accommodate families as best I could meant appointment here and there and, typical of summer, frequent cancellations or forgotten appointments that had me frustrated and sweating in professional attire when I wanted to be sitting in shorts reading a book in the shade. So, I took several years off. Then last year, I decided to give summer speech another chance.  I had several inquiries from established, reliable clients and I felt more able to make my needs an equal priority. Success!  I had a summer that

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Teacher Reward Tracker and Countdown Calendar (FREEBIE)

I love my job, but that doesn’t mean I’m not itching for the school year to end and summer to arrive.  And for many of us the last month or two seems designed to break your spirit.  The paperwork, the antsy kiddos, the new referrals? (Really, you didn’t notice this months ago?) Teacher appreciation week will be coming up soon and you may or may not be included in that. Let’s take matters into our own hands. I’ve made a teacher reward and countdown calendar. (SLPs, it’s specifically for you, too!) Use it to get through May, or the last

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