Sunday, February 24, 2013

The Winter Blues

Ugh.  It's that time of year.  
The excitement of Mardi Gras is over.  Lenten season is here. 
Here in Louisiana it's been yucky and rainy. No magical snow days for us.  
We sit waiting for the first signs of spring.  
Let's face it y'all...this time of year is BLAH.  

To top it off I missed work Friday due to a crummy stomach virus 
(I hate using sick days for actual sickness!!) 

In my speech room I have all of my St. Patrick's Day and Easter activities on standby but I can't pull them out yet!! It's too early!  
So what will we do for the next 2 weeks in my speech room? 

We're gonna get our game on! 
You can incorporate a game with any old IEP goal! 
My kids are competitive! 
They love to win and they'll do anything I ask of them if they get to play a game- 
and the funny thing is that I NEVER give them anything when they win.  

Any student who asks, "What do I get for winning?" will always hear the same thing ...
"You get the good feeling of winning!"  (that usually brings about a groan or a face)

Just a few games we will be playing to cure the winter blues until Spring arrives...

I'm even using this board for a little guy with behavior issues.  I just added velcro to each star and printed out a little picture of a Jedi on card stick (and added velcro to that).  The student moves his Jedi along the stars from start to finish when his teacher feels he's done something especially positive. When he gets to the end of the board- whether it takes him a day or a week- he gets a reward. 

And I made this one for one of my princess fanatics......
So whatever the goal (or the learning target) may be
making inferences, fact and opinion, dictionary skills, comparing/contrasting
sequencing, articulation, social skills, phonics....
my students won't have the blues. 

 look up a word, get a turn at the game
answer 2 questions, get a turn at the game
role play a social scene, get a turn at the game
say your /r/ words 5 times, get a turn at the game
read 3 word family words, get a turn at the game
follow 3 directions, get a turn at the game

If you wanna grab my pack of 11 open game boards for your students, you can do it RIGHT HERE

What are YOU doing to fight the wintertime blues? 

Until next time
:)
Mia







Thursday, February 14, 2013

DIY and a FrEEBIE!

Today in my speech room, I was knee deep in Valentine's Day!
 Next week will be all about President's Day-
but before we know it, St. Patrick's Day will be here!! 

I want to tell you about one of my favorite activities that's perfect for St. Patty's, but it's a DIY so I want to make sure you have plenty of time to make it! 

It's all about practicing carryover of fluency and articulation skills OR it's also perfect for working on basic reading comprehension or following directions! 

What will you need? 

1) 60 tongue depressors
2) some paint (I used tempura) in red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple
3) a permanent marker 
4) the free download of 80 cards from my Teachers Pay Teachers Store


FIRST, paint the tips (front and back) of the 60 tongue depressors
(10 red, 10 orange, 10 yellow, 10 green, 10 blue, 10 purple). 

After the paint dries, use a permanent marker to write the numbers 1-10 on your 10 tongue depressors of each color (front and back) like I did on the sticks shown below.  


Let the 60 tongue depressors dry and place them- colored tips down- in a container of some sort.  
I use an owl mug because my room is owl themed and this mug happens to be super cute :)


Download, print and cut out the cards that you will need to play the game HERE 


During my speech sessions, I use this as a carryover activity for my articulation and fluency students. 
 I even use it with my DIBELS intervention group because they need practice reading those little bitty sight words in sentences. 
{Also great practice for following directions!} 


We go around the table and students take turns drawing a card from the facedown stack,  reading it aloud, and following the directions.  

Cards include directions such as "Pick a stick that is red or less than six" or "Pick two sticks with even numbers" or "Pick a yellow stick but it cannot be the number three." 
Some of the cards are shown below. 

If they pick the stick called for on the card, they get to keep it.  If not, they have to put the stick back in the container. 

It's a fun and fast paced way to get in lots of speech practice- whichever you may be targeting. 
It also requires the kids to strain their brains which I LOVE! 



The object of the game is to make a rainbow by collecting sticks with the 6 colors of the rainbow (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple) 
Whoever does so first, wins the game! 


This can be played all year round (a great go-to activity!) 
but it's especially fun for St. Patrick's Day and spring!!

Enjoy! If you give it a try, I'd love you hear how it worked for 'ya!
-Mia

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

NYC and cupcakes!


I'm back home from an amazing trip to New York City where I got to experience 
Winter Storm Nemo firsthand!! 
Wow!! 
Being from the south, I had never experienced anything even CLOSE to that 
and I loved every minute of it!!  

Some of the highlights?...











and another important highlight from our trip....


CUPCAKES!!
 We fell in love with these little bite sized babies from Baked by Melissa. 
Yummo
My husband and I devoured this dozen...

and then bought 2 cases  to bring home to our 2 boys....


Too cute and yummy to resist!!

I've also been on a cupcake kick in my speech room!! 

First came my Cupcake Cause and Effect Activity...








 
Finally a way to make teaching cause and effect concrete and fun!

 Uhhhh, and who can resist these cute little cupcakes!?  








If you haven't already checked it out, you can find Cupcakes Cause and Effect HERE  

Then came my matching game that I use for quick articulation therapy and other monotonous (borrrrinnng)  tasks.....





















You can grab these cutie pies (or cupcakes I should say) HERE


And now my latest creation- Cupcake Questions and Games!   

I don't know about you but so many of my students can't answer some of the simplest questions!! 
 If you can't answer the simple ones, OH MY what trouble you will have answering the rigorous, higher order, multi-step questions of the common core! 

And if you can't do that, well geez louise, how will my babies ever pass their tests?  

You would think that I made these questions and activity for my little bitty ones
.....and I did.... 
but I also have 3rd and 4th graders who struggle with these easy wh- (and how) questions.  



Why oh why are they always getting the why, when and wheres mixed up!?  
Well, I made them some visual cue cards for them and I'm hoping that will help. 


Oh the dreaded WHY questions!
















It even includes a gameboard to use along with the questions.  
Games= happy students= happy me
You can check out Cupcake Questions and Games right here!

Ok all this cupcake talk is making me hungry!  
See ya soon!!
-Mia


Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Princesses are taking over my speech room!!

So far this week in my "speech room" we have been immersed in everything Mardi Gras.     

Mardi Gras art. Mardi Gras reading.  Mardi gras crafts. Mardi Gras games.  

However,  I have a few little girls who don't give a hoot about Mardi Gras....so for them I cranked out some princesses!! 

I have the most precious 5 year old little student who is utterly obsessed with princesses 
(the same child who does commentary on my outfit everyday)
so I made this little activity for her and and my other girlie girls.  
It's quick, easy and cute as can be....



The premise is easy.  The little girlie who finds the most princessses wins the game! 
Turn all cards facedown on the table and each student will get a chance to find a princess card after she's performed the skill I've asked of her. 
At this point, they are putty in my hands :)

 I have them say their /r/ sounds, /l/ sounds, "sh" sounds, etc.  
{but you could use them to perform any skills or task you'd like!} 
Math problems- reading practice-answering questions-writing spelling words- practicing handwriting-The possibilities are endless. 

 After they do it to your liking, they get to flip over a card. If it's a princess, they get to keep it; if it's one of the 5 wild cards they have to follow the directions on the card.  

I like to set a timer for the period of time I have to work with them and whoever has the most princesses when the timer rings, wins the game! 
If it's just me and one child, I get to play along with her :) {I'll never be too old for games}

Princesses make them happy, and lots of target skill practice makes me happy! 
If you have princess obsessed students, you may want to grab this activity HERE


This year I started working with a young old girl who has Asperger Syndrome. 
 In the past all of my students with Asperger's have been boys, and I found that most of the materials out there catered to boys. 

I have a pragmatics/social language program that is my standard go-to program but this little girl has grown tired of it {and so have I}  so I created an activity that fits just what she needs.....complete with ....you guessed it.........princesses! 





I use the social scenario cards to play games {and to elicit some great discussions with my student}.


There are 56 cards that tackle some very common "problem" social sitations for kids, and 4 blank cards so that you can write in some scenarios that personally pertain to your students.







You can use these to play a card game. Students must pick a card and answer the questions about it.  Once they do that, they get the keep the card, and the student with the most cards wins!





Or you can use this with ANY board game. Students must pick a card and answer the questions on the card before getting a turn at any boardgame (Candyland, Kerplunk, Hi Ho Cherrio, etc). 



Or.......





....you can play with either of the 2 included gameboards.  (Just print them, overlap them slightly and tape them together on the back). I like to laminate them so they will last FOREVER!!  (or at least until I'm too old and tired to do speech therapy)















With these games, students must pick a princess card and discuss the social situation prior to getting a turn at the game.  



If you have a little princess who would flip her lid for these princess goodies you can find the 12 page download right here.  If you have boys and missed my earlier blog post on SUPERHEROES, I have another activity just like this one featuring irresistable super heroes!!  You can check it out here!


Who says learning can't be fun!? Even for princesses!

-Mia

Jasper Roberts Consulting - Widget