Smarty Symbols: A Giveaway!

Update 9/22/15:  John was the lucky winner!Smarty symbols

I’m sure you’re familiar with Smarty Ears.  That’s the company that makes all the fabulous speech and language apps designed by real, practicing SLPs!

But did you know that they also have a sister company with a huge database of straight forward symbols that you can use to create AAC boards and therapy materials?

What I like about the Smarty Symbols service is that because SLPs are integrally involved in its development, the vocabulary is standard and pertinent as are the graphic representations.

Smarty Symbols agree

For instance, you can look up a word like “agree” and get a clear picture of what that means.

smarty symbols cat got your tongue

There are also lots of idioms.

And I feel like emotions and actions are a particular strength.


There’s also a feature that allows you to search for words based on sound and position.  HUGE timesaver!


And recently they added the option to download images in color or black and white.  Who wants to save money on printing?!

Pathways and zig zag samples


I have a commercial license which allows me to create and sell my own products.  Check out Pathways for Articulation and Langauge or my Zig Zag products which incorporate these adorable figures.

But for many teachers, parents and therapists, the personal use license is plenty.  You gain access to all of the clip art (already at 13,000 images and growing all the time) for only $45/year.  Monthly plans are available.  For more info, click here.

I purchased my own SmartySymbols subscription, but I’ve been given a year-long personal license to giveaway!  To enter leave a comment letting us know the type of vocabulary you target most frequently by September 21, 2015, midnight EST.  I’ll draw a winner at random and make the announcement on September 22, 2015.


This Post Has 54 Comments

  1. Joan O'Brien

    Along with the ‘typical’ word banks of synonyms, antonyms, and homonyms, I’ve been working hard to target Tier II Vocab. Thanks for the chance to win!

  2. Laura

    I often find that I am targeting the metacognitive verbs , actually verbs in general, as well as basic concept vocabulary. These images are great! Thanks for the review and information !

  3. mtmaryslp

    I love Smarty Symbols. One of the great aspects for me, is the responsiveness in getting new symbols created. If there’s a symbol I need but can’t find, I can request it. Gotta love that!

    Great post highlighting the various reasons to use it.

  4. Lacy

    I’m always targeting those tier two words! Along with those, synonyms/antonyms, multiple meaning words, and emotives!

  5. LisaE- SLP

    I have multiple children with autism on my caseload, so I am targeting emotions, idioms, similes and metaphors. I also have a 5th grade girl with CP who is nonverbal, so I’m making communication boards to fit different devices, as well. Thank you for the chance to win – I love the Smarty Symbols!

  6. Lisa Varo

    I am looking for more symbols for my lower functioning students. I believe these symbols would be better understood than some I have used in the past. I would love to have these symbols!

  7. Sharon Swindell

    Thank you for the opportunity to win! This year I have created a lot of visual picture schedules and social stories. verbs, emotions and places seem to be what I have used the most so far……

  8. Kathie Ballantyne

    I love Smarty Ears products! I am currently working with several non-verbal autistic clients, targeting functional vocabualry for a variety of environments.

  9. Tracey F

    I have a nonverbal student for the 1st time in many years and am getting used to using symbols again. Although pictures/symbols can be helpful for all of my speech students! Thanks for the opportunity.

  10. Jessica Finch

    I target a lot of core vocabulary! This subscription would be so helpful for all of my students. I strongly dislike the Boardmaker symbols. Thank you!

  11. Trish

    I, too, like to target tier 2 words when working with elementary students. Thank you for the opportunity to win this subscription!

  12. MaryBeth

    I really like the clarity of the Smaryt Ears symbols. I work with many students on the autism spectrum and this would be a nice addition to the visuals I already use. Thanks!

  13. Erika Buessing

    I target vocabulary related to curriculum or real-life. I also focus on tier 1 & II vocabulary. The vocabulary focus is based on individual needs. =) Please pick me for this drawing!! =)

  14. Carrie O

    Working with special needs preschoolers: pronouns, basic concepts, and emotions.

  15. Kim Hovey

    I seem to be targeting a lot of descriptors lately. Not always easy to find good picture-symbol representation for them.

  16. Nikki

    I tend to use a lot of functional and environmental vocabulary. I love the symbols for idioms! That is something I have not used before.

  17. Jennifer Gore

    I find myself working on Tier 2 words, prepositions, verbs, question words and connecting words within the classroom.

  18. Inna

    I am constantly trying to find some new ideas to target Tier 2 vocabulary in a fun and engaging way, visuals are always appreciated.

  19. Genesis


  20. Tracy

    I target vocabulary that is relevant to the curriculum the student is currently using as well as items that work on describing, noun+verb relationships, pragmatic vocabulary, fluency terms, etc. I create a ton of my own materials for teletherapy as well as purchase some from TPT and adapt them.

  21. M. Parker

    Common core vocabulary is usually what I target. I love that this app does idioms. That is difficult to find pics for.

  22. Susan Berkowitz

    I love using Smarty Symbols in my resources! This is a great giveaway opportunity!

  23. Kelly

    I work in early intervention, so target lots of core vocabulary!

  24. Megan

    i target mostly curricular and seasonal vocabulary but also some core/functional vocabulary for my md and nonverbal kiddos. This would be a great resource!

  25. Carrie

    I typically target academic vocabulary..antonyms/synonyms especially.

  26. Sue

    I would LOVE a chance to win this as I am always creating visuals to use with my students … those who need social stories and visual schedules as well as those working on basic concepts and articulation skills.

  27. Katy Smith

    I find myself working on verbs a lot these days and I’m always looking for new ways to practise with the kids so they don’t get bored of the same old pictures and games 🙂

  28. Renee

    I tend to target descriptive vocabulary that adds richness and complexity to my student’s sentences. These words are often difficult to illustrate. I would love the opportunity to use this type of software. Thank you!

  29. Ashten

    I work in a preschool setting and primarily target functional vocabulary and basic concepts.

  30. Dawn Carriero

    I target basic core vocabulary related to preschool age children this year in special day classes. Visuals are a must!

  31. Lora

    I use a lot of verbs, basic concepts and basic vocabulary for producing picture symbols for students!

  32. Jeannette Burgess, CCC-SLP

    Core vocabulary and those relational words which are so hard to symbolize !

  33. Jennifer

    Currently, I am targeting requesting and verbs. This would be such a blessing to win!

  34. Kristen

    I Have such a diverse caseload this year it feels like I am targeting everything !! By the way I am not shouting I can’t get this to type in lower case : ) Thanks for a great opportunity !!

  35. Carol

    I get plenty of requests for social stories, and recently, a request for scientific procedures and their definitions. Our Boardmaker version is obsolete, and it’s expensive!
    These Smarty Symbols look great!

  36. Shira Reiss

    I target Common Core vocabulary that targets what is happenning in the classroom. Looks like a great program to use.

  37. Lauri

    I target descriptor words and verbs as, these are both lacking in my current caseload of students.

  38. Lea neff

    Targeting core vocabulary mainly right now.

  39. Cynthia

    Everything…nouns, verbs, multiple meaning, wh-question choices, core vocab…all depends on the needs of my caseload

  40. Shannon Giles

    I target a lot of thematic vocabulary…seasonal, holidays, school, home.

  41. Elona Holdhusen

    I target functional vocabulary, verbs and prepositions. I make social stories and task analyses daily.

  42. Breanna Allor

    I work with preschool and kindergarten students, so I target a lot of colors, prepositions, verbs, and various core vocabulary words.

  43. Cassandra S.

    I always seem to be targeting emotion words, core words, and recently started incorporating EET – so a lot of describing words.

  44. Aprill

    This year my caseload is so diverse that i’ve been targeting core vocabulary for my nonverbal students, visual schedules and prompts for others, and adapting curriculum and materials for the rest of my K-3 students. I’ve been trying to convince my district to purchase Smarty Symbols because I love all of the great ways I’ve seen it used!

  45. Lori

    I would love to have an alternative to PCS. Smarty Symbols also looks like a good companion to the symbols my students encounter in TouchChat and P2G. I would love the opportunity to try them!

  46. Terri

    I like to target seasonal vocab, and with my upper elementary kids, have been focusing a lot in common core subject area vocabulary, which the classroom teachers appreciate.

  47. Nikki Heyman

    Basic concepts and verbs is a great way to work on sentence expansion. I love the ability to print in black & white and I will definitely have to invest in a laminator for this!

  48. Liane E.

    I commonly target these types of vocabulary words in a variety of settings; synonyms, antonyms, multiple meaning vocabulary, basic vocabulary for the younger students (nouns, verbs, attributes).

  49. Helen Wagner

    Hi! I target lots of functional vocabulary and basic concepts!



  51. Genevieve

    I work on functional vocabulary as well as thematic and seasonal vocabulary. I also create social stories. This could save a lot of time finding images to match vocabulary in stories that we read during therapy.

  52. John du Bois

    I’m usually targeting descriptive words, especially for the Expanding Expressions Tool descriptors.

    It’s always looked like Smarty Symbols is a great thing to get into using, but I’ve never pulled the trigger on using it. Maybe winning a free year would change my mind 😉

    1. admin

      Looks like you don’t need to, John! You were the lucky number! I’m sending you an email to collect your prize. Kim

  53. Katie Covert

    I’m looking for basic vocabulary and helpful images for my Special Needs classroom!

Comments are closed.


The views expressed in this blog are my own and are intended to inspire other speech-language pathologists in their own practice. If you are a parent, teacher or other educator, these ideas are not intended to take the place of treatment by a certified clinician. Read full disclaimer here.