Facebook Instagram Pinterest TeachersPayTeachers BlogLovin Home Image Map

October 26, 2015

Frenzied SLP's: Treats of Halloween Linky

Helloooooo!!! I am honored to be joining the Frenzied SLPs for this Treats of Halloween Language Tricks and Activities Linky Party hosted by Annie of Doyle Speech Works, Laura of All 'Yall Need and Manda and Shanda of Twin Speech Language and Literacy to share some of my favorites!

We made these darling Frankensteins last week in my speech room. I saw several variations of these posted on Pinterest so I decided to give them a try. They were fairly easy to put together and ALL the kids loved them, from preschoolers to upper elementary. You just cut rectangles from black card stock or construction paper, and then cut out the center to make a frame. Make the top edge jagged to look like his hair. From the scraps, cut out eyebrows, crooked smiles and bolts. Cut circles for the eyes out of white paper and draw the eyeballs in the center. Cut a piece of clear contact paper to fit the rectangle and stick it onto the frame. Cut odd-shaped pieces from green tissue paper to fill in the face.

I used these mostly as reinforcers while working on articulation targets. After the kids said their target words/phrases 3-5 times, I gave them a piece to stick on their Frankenstein. They really turned out cute!

I used Frankenstein as a reinforcer for language activities, too. I paired it with my Halloween Flip Book for Adjectives and had the student make up a sentence using the pictures from the book.  This little flip book is great, by the way, for working on adjectives and talking about if the picture pairs are probable. Can flashlights be scary? Why or why not? And here's another treat: it's a freebie! Just click on the link above to find it.

Another thing I love to do in the week leading up to Halloween is practice trick-or-treating. So many of our little ones really need help practicing this routine, and a play house with characters is the perfect way to do it! The house in the picture is from Fisher Price, and it's really fun.

Another thing I'll be using this week are the Halloween-themed pages from my Fall Find It on the Go flip book. These print-and-go pages are fun search and find activities that kids really enjoy and can be used to target multiple goals. The page pictured above is great for working on finding things that go together. I like to have the children tell me why the items go together after they find each pair. So many great language-learning opportunities! Check out this very flexible flip book at my Teachers Pay Teachers store.

One last quick and easy activity I'd like to share is Halloween Block Play.  I attached some cute Halloween-themed pictures to wooden blocks with clear packing tape, and they have been a hit! Here are some ways I've been using them:

  • following directions: Great for positional directions (top, bottom, next to, behind, in front, between, etc.) and temporal directions (before, after, first, last, etc.).
  • Describing object location: Let the child be the teacher and tell YOU where to place the blocks.
  • Storytelling:  Line up several blocks on the table. Have the student tell a story using the blocks as prompts.
And guess what, I have another treat for you...you can find these cute pictures as freebie in my store! You can find it here.

I hope you found a few treats in this post that you can add to your pumpkin-shaped bucketful of language tricks for Halloween.  You can even find MORE treats by heading on over to the other Frenzied SLPs' blogs to check out their tricks and treats. Just click on the links below:

An InLinkz Link-up

October 20, 2015

Quick No-Prep Halloween Activities for Preschoolers

Want some fun, motivating no-prep activities to do this week?  I've got a couple of ideas!

A number of years ago, I bought these wooden shapes from a craft store. Every October I bring them out, and use them in ways I never have before. They are durable and appealing, and most of all, the kids love them. Here are three ways I used them:

  1. Mystery Box!  I have this wonderful mystery box that I got from Lakeshore Learning that has holes in each end of the box. I have the child close their eyes, and I sneak one of the shapes inside the box.  Next, I let the child reach in and touch the shape from the other side. I held onto the shape from the other side as well to help prevent the child from taking a peek, but you wouldn't need to do this if the child has enough self-control not to peek. Then, I give the child three or four clues about what the object is and let the child guess. After the child makes a guess, he/she pulls the object out of the box.  Here is an example of the clues I gave: You see it on Halloween. It is white. It flies. It is scary. It says "Boo!"
  2. Flashlight Hunt!  This one was my little friend's idea. He asked me to turn off the lights and hide the wooden shapes around the room so he could find them using a flashlight in the dark. How could I resist? So we did just that. It worked perfectly for working on object location! We found the shapes "on" the floor, the bench, the shelf, the chair, the box and the table and said the location each time. We repeated this activity three times, but he could have done this all day! I just know his mom is going to go home and recreate this using Halloween things they have at home.
  3. Make a Sentence! We laid the shapes on the table and named each one. Then we chose two shapes to tell a "story" about. For example, after choosing the witch and the ghost, the child said, "The witch and the ghost went trick-or-treating." This was so great for generating sentences and ideas about what the characters might do! It's the perfect way to introduce storytelling to your littles.
I know you probably don't have these same wooden shapes, but no worries! You could do these same activities using picture cards. And if you don't have a mystery box, use a tissue box instead! 

October 15, 2015

Put Your iPhone Camera to Work: Creating Stories for Your iPad

I love to make stories for my students using my iPhone and photo editing apps. It's really easy! Let me show you how I do it.

Every fall, three little gnome brothers turn up in my speech room to play. If you'd like to see the magical gnome home I created last fall, read this post. Each day, the kids arrive to find those industrious gnomes playing with our toys. This is how I made a story to record all the little gnomes' antics. I wrote this story to specifically target the pronoun "he" and regular past tense verbs.

I started by taking pictures every day of the gnomes posing with their toys.  After a week or two, I had enough pictures to make a story.

I load the pictures onto my computer and open the Picasa app.

I select a picture and then click on the "text" icon on the left side of the screen.

I type the text directly onto the picture. You can choose from a variety of fonts, colors and sizes. Then I click "apply" to save the changes to the picture.

I click the little green symbol above the red circle to hold the completed picture in the tray along with the others I want to add to my story. When I have the ones I need, I save them as an album.

Next, you have options of what you want to do with your story. You can save this file to iPhoto and just view the pictures on your phone or iPad, just like you would with any photographs. But I like to save mine to Dropbox so I can open the file and view just the photos in the file and so I can share the Dropbox link with families.  Here's what I do:

First I save the album to my desktop. Next, I choose the file from my desktop, and then click on "Move to Dropbox".

Once the file is in Dropbox, I can open it on my iPad or my iPhone and view the story, swiping the screen to turn the pages.

See? Wasn't that easy? There are probably many other ways to edit your photos to make a story, but this one really works well for me. I love that I can share the links with parents and that they can access them anonymously. The kids really enjoy them, too.  It's a great way for them to share about speech/language therapy with their families at home and practice their speech and language targets while doing so!

October 14, 2015

My Speech Therapy OOPS!


Have you ever had one of those speech therapy moments you wish you could take back? My friend, Karen over at The Pedi Speechie blog is hosting a series of posts by SLP bloggers sharing their speech therapy OOPS moments. Today is MY day to share, so head on over to Karen's blog to read about one of my most embarrassing moments!

Speech Therapy Oops!

October 11, 2015

Product Review: Halloween Attributes by Activity Tailor


Fall just seems to be flying by, and it's already time to start planning for Halloween! I've been searching Pinterest and Teachers Pay Teachers for a few more activities to round out my lesson plans, and I found this great product for comparing and contrasting by Kim over at Activity Tailor:

Halloween Attributes Game features three different sets of Halloween-themed cards along with a variety of comparing/contrasting activities, several that feature those motivating QR codes that every kid loves!

The first activity includes 8 jack-o-lantern pictures and 16 clue cards. Each clue card features three clues and a QR code. The students listen to the clues and remove the jack-o-lantern cards that don't match the clues until they are left with just one card. Then they check their answer using the QR code.

There's also a costume version of this activity as well as one using witch's hats. So cute and my kids will love the variety!

The second activity that I just love is the set of witch's hat Cariboo cards. My kids never seem to tire of the Cariboo game, and these darling little hats are going to be great for listening for details and for the expressive language skill of describing. If you don't have the Cariboo game, you can still use these cards for the same purpose, just lay them out on the table and hide several plastic chips under the cards.

The last activity included in this set is a chart for comparing and contrasting the Cariboo hat cards. I used the 8 hat picture cards from the QR code activity instead because my Cariboo cards were already mounted on my game, and they worked just fine. You place one card over each column and then you mark off the features of each hat. After completing the chart, I had my students describe each hat using the features checked on the chart. Then I had them compare and contrast the hats based on the features checked. I really liked this activity as it provided a visual way to organize details for comparing and contrasting.

This product is a great addition to my Halloween lesson plans and will provide opportunities for working on comparing and contrasting for at least two sessions. Go to Kim's Teachers Pay Teachers store to grab your own copy: Halloween Attributes