This week in my accent modification class we discussed how to produce the “tr”, “dr”, “du”, and “tu”. These are some of the most common consonant errors that non-native English speakers of English make. Watch my video on how you pronounce these consonants.
If you have received accent modification training or you want to know how your speech can be better understood, then you may be interested in using clear speech. I have taught my clients rules about word stress and intonation. These rules are very important, but when you’re in a stressful moment, such as speaking in front of your boss and co-workers or on the phone, it can be difficult to remember all of the rules. A strategy “Clear Speech“ has helped my clients especially when they are doing presentations or webinars. Check out my video to learn more.
It’s kind of sad that ToysRus closed, but I have to admit I rarely shopped there. I like to find deals on toys and games so it was not my top choice for shopping for speech therapy materials/toys. Luckily one of my client’s parents reminded me about ToysRus’s big 50%-75% closing sale that happened over the summer. I didn’t think there would be anything left, but I was pleasantly surprised. See image below of the treasures that I found!
One of the toys I got for 50% off was Puppy Dog Pal’s Playhouse. In my collections of materials and toys, I do not have anything like this toy. It’s a Disney product and looked like fun so I paid for it half price. I have used it about 5 times in therapy and think it was worth the buy!
Playing with my 2 year olds – This toy is great for motivating late talkers and children who are limited speakers or not speaking yet to work on play skills, attending, and joint attention. I found out that one of my little ones loves the cartoon that goes with the toy, so it was a big hit! I modeled many core words, such as, up, down, in, out, go, stop. Since a couple of my little ones are not yet talking or have only a few words, I decided to model silly sounds and noises while playing: “weee”, ” whoa”, “yay”, “awe”, “hey”, “woof”, (panting sound), dog crying sound, etc. I also encouraged the child to share the dogs as he wanted to hold both of them. We worked on taking turns going down the slide and I made my dog talk to his dog. It was a fun therapy session!
Playing with 4 and 5 year olds – After studying the instructions, I discovered that there were many pictures showing how to play with the toy. I would think it would be self explanatory, but these images gave me an idea. One of my clients is working on following directions and learning concepts (spatial, qualitative, etc.). I took a picture of the images with my iPad. Then before we could play with the toy, I asked him to do what the picture told him to do. So we targeted following the direction with the concept (i.e., “Put the dog on the swing.”). After he followed the directions without difficulty, I had him either repeat a complete sentence or create a sentence about where he put the dog.
Overall this is a fun toy that targets many language goals!
Check out this video for more ideas and materials I use for my “Ocean Life” theme.
A therapy favorite is my stuffed shark “Bruce”. He is from the movie Finding Nemo. I have had him for a long time so his tail no longer moves back and forth, but he still talks when you open his mouth. Most of my kids enjoy opening his mouth and feeding him. A few of the younger kids have been a little afraid of him, but enjoy watching me feed him and make him swim around the room. We target many goals: learning and using core words (open, close, in, out, eat), using prepositions (in, out), producing sentences (i.e., Open your mouth. I want to feed you. Eat the fish.), and any articulation goal (i.e., putting items in his mouth that have the targeted sound).
I always try to make speech therapy fun, but in the summertime I really try to turn the fun up a notch! One of my favorite themes is Ocean Life. This video is part 1 and shows some of the materials I use to target speech and language goals. Hope this gives you some ideas!