Becoming an Informed SLP

My coffee table always has a slippery stack of glossy magazines. I love opening the mailbox and seeing any one of them there—cooking, travel, news,…or the ASHA Leader. But years ago, you used to check two journals that would be delivered to your house each month and those I had a very different relationship with. Those austere covers stacked up so quickly and stood in a reproachful pile until I hid them in a box, unable to actually throw them away. At one point, I started perusing the article titles (you didn’t even have to actually open the journal for

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Scissor Skills and Speech: A Perfect Match

Stick with me.  We’re gonna talk crafts. Not the glitter-flying, drying-time crafts, but specifically those that incorporate scissor skills. Maybe a glue stick or crayons.  Even those of you who swear you can’t or won’t “do crafts” will be tempted to add these and here’s why…. Have you ever noticed there’s a disproportionate number of kids from the classroom that see (or should see) both you and the OT?  It’s not a coincidence. Articulation is the fine-iest of the fine motor skills, involving lots of little muscles in a symphony of movement and coordinated timing. But our kiddos who are

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Easier Assessments (and Artic) with Throat Scope

I need to come clean here. I don’t do a lot of oral mech exams. I’ll do a cursory look at how the tongue is moving and see if the can modify the movement with some verbal cues during an assessment, but I’m hesitant to alienate a child I might start seeing for therapy during their assessment by holding their tongue down with a tongue depressor and really getting in there. (And I would never try for a gag reflex! Not with my population who would be much more likely to throw-up on me than give me any neurological insight.)

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Falling for Speech eBook (Free)

Forty of the SLPs on TPT have come together to bring you a bounty of fall themed freebies!  Click here for your copy. Each page represents one seller and includes a freebie as well as a featured paid product. Enjoy the harvest!

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Eliciting K and G

The beginning of the school year is when I’m most likely to get a referral for a “fronter.” And, of course, it’s because those kids that come in needing help to elicit /k/ and /g/ sound so obviously in need of speech therapy.  The good news is, once remeditated, it makes a big impact and my experience has been that it often happens fairly quickly.  The key is to elicit anything you can in the back of the mouth and start generalization as soon as possible. The trick that works best for me involves the physioball.  I use it in

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Fairy Tales in Speech Part 3: Goldilocks, Little Red and Jack and the Beanstalk

In my previous two posts I talked about why I like to use fairy tales in speech and then the specific targets I’ve been working on and how I used Hansel and Gretel and The Three Little Pigs to support these goals. Today, I’m sharing ideas I used with Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Jack and the Beanstalk and Little Red Riding Hood.  Let’s get started! As a quick recap, the primary goals I needed to address were: retelling a simple story sequence answering simple wh- comprehension questions during a story recognizing thoughts and feelings from illustrations and verbal descriptions

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Fairy Tales in Speech Part 2: Hansel & Gretel and The Three Little Pigs

Last week I talked about why I use fairy tales, this week I want to show you some of the specific activities I did with Hansel and Gretel and The Three Little Pigs.  I only saw a few students this summer so I didn’t need to incorporate as many goals as I would need to during the school year.  The primary targets I had in mind were: retelling a simple story sequence answering simple wh- comprehension questions during a story recognizing thoughts and feelings from illustrations and verbal descriptions in a story using she/he appropriately producing multisyllabic words in sentences

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Fairy Tales in Speech (Part 1)

What is it about fairy tales? So many of them persist despite not following cultural trends.  What’s the appeal and should we promote these with our speech and language students? My opinion is a resounding “yes!”  The reason I love fairy tales are: They have well known and set scripts which means my little guys that struggle with play might be able to entice a playmate if everyone already knows the story. Parents, grandparents and caregivers know the stories (unlike modern TV or movie scripts) which means lessons surrounding fairy tales are more likely to be supported at home. The

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New Year, New School

This year back-to-school has a different meaning.  We’ll be dropping our oldest off at college. (cue watery eyes) She’s appropriately excited. And nervous. And, oh-so-ready for this next step. But it will still be a big change….for everyone. I’ve spent the past couple of years touring schools with her and really reflecting on what school should be and provide (or at least what we hope it does).  And repeatedly telling her and her friends that, despite the overwhelming message of needing to “win” an acceptance at the most competitive school you can get into, you are the customer and if a college

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Activity Tailor Turns 6! Time for a Giveaway!

Back in 2011, I tentatively started blogging with “Beyond Bubbles” (at least, I’m pretty sure that was my first post; due to a website update a few years ago that changed pub dates on some of those early ones, I can’t be entirely sure). Since then, I’ve published….wait for it…551 times. Today is 552. The number is staggering, even to me who would presumably have had a sense of the magnitude, but might as well been guessing the number of jelly beans in a jar. In any event, it’s time to celebrate! How do you feel about that? Probably happy

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