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The Communication Window Has Moved!

20 Nov

Exciting news! I have outgrown my free WordPress website so it is time to move! So excited to unveil my new web address and website:

www.thecommunicationwindow.com

If you follow me or have this web address bookmarked, please change over to the new web address. I’m so excited to have new features and more control over everything on the new site. No more random ads and lots more functionality!

This website will stay up for a few more days until it starts forwarding to the new site. I hope everyone loves the new site as much as I do. Feel free to leave feedback on anything you like or dislike about the new site.

I also have a new logo! Click on it to head over to the new site!

Communication Window Logo Long

Pronouns Interactive Game for Preschool and Up

20 Sep

It’s been a busy week of getting to know my new kids and starting therapy, so I haven’t had a chance to post about the new activity I made. I have kids on my caseload (and always do) that have pronouns goals. Flashcards work for my older kids but don’t keep my preschoolers’ interest so I created a hands on activity to keep them interested while we work on pronouns. It is also great for working on plurals, is/are verb+ing, and general sentence structure.

Pronouns Preschool Speech Therapy GameSince it is food-based, I decided to name it the Yum Yum Pronouns Game. It focuses on the pronouns “he”, “she”, and “they”. It’s a printable game that includes game cards that show either a girl, boy, or girl and boy as well as a food item. A child picks a card and labels it with whatever language targets you are working on. It could be “he/she is eating an ______” if you would like to use present progressive verb tenses or “they ate two apples” if you would like the child to use past tense verbs. It also has large pictures of a girl, boy, and girl and boy; as well as lots of small food picture cards that correspond to the foods on the game cards. Those pictures are sized to fit a square tissue box. I cut out the mouth areas on the picture and on the box, so when a child chooses a game card they can then find the matching food and feed it to the matching boy, girl, or boy and girl. After a child completes their turn they get to keep the game card and the player with the most cards at the end is the winner. To make the game more exciting, there are also “Ants! Lose a Card!” and “Ice Cream Truck! Take Another Turn!” cards.

I also included printable dice templates so that the game could be played in a more open-ended manner. To play the dice version of the game, roll both dice then choose a food picture that matches the food showing on the dice and feed it to the matching person/people while labeling what you are doing (i.e., “She is eating ice cream”).

If you do not want to put the pictures on a tissue box, you can also just tape them to the front of a sandwich baggie and cut out the mouth holes to still have an interactive game. I also thought this format  would be great to adapt to work on the dreaded “I” and “You” pronouns by putting a picture of the child and a parent or teacher on the box. Then you could take turns feeding each person targeting things like “I am eating a cookie” and “You are eating a banana”. Working on “I” and “you” is so tough I am constantly trying to think of ways to work on it!

I made the game to keep my preschoolers interested, but it works great with any age child who is working on pronouns. I used it with kids all the way up to third grade this week and got rave reviews!

If you would like the game, it is available on Teachers Pay Teachers here.

I’m Back!

2 Sep

Holy moly! It looks like it’s been almost two years since I have updated my blog! Where has the time gone? A lot of has changed in the last two years both personally and in the world of education. Personally, I spent much of my free time over the last year embracing my creative side and started a freelance graphic design business (www.backfourdesign.com if you are interested.) I have been doing logos, graphics, web design and all sorts of things! It has been more successful than I ever imagined but unfortunately took me away from my blogging.

Well after a couple year hiatus I have been re-energized by a change in my assignment for this upcoming school year. After 4 years of having only preschoolers on my caseload, this year I will have both preschool and elementary kiddos. So while I will still have a big focus on preschoolers with autism I am also jumping back into the world of elementary. I guess I better turn back on that part of my brain and unbox all my elementary materials and games!

Over the last two years, technology has opened many opportunities for new activities and materials in the world of speech pathology and special education. I have been using my iPad as a speech therapy tool fairly consistently and plan on using it even more this year since I know how motivating it is for older kids. Some other technology resources that are changing education are Pinterest and and sites like Teachers Pay Teachers.

With my developing graphic design skills and desire to have to great new activities this year I am starting to develop lists of  all the materials I would like to create! Way too many ideas! This week I have been working on revamping my articulation data sheets as well as making a sheet that my students can graph their own progress on articulation goals. I will be posting up a link to that soon so keep an eye out. The really big first project I am working on is a packet of great pictures and activities for working on multisyllabic words that will target both articulation and language goals. Hopefully it will be ready by the end of the week!

This year I plan on blogging about new materials I discover, reviewing iPad apps, and of course general ideas about the world of speech pathology and autism. It feels good to be back!

Taking the Plunge

25 Jan

It looks too cold…I can’t see the bottom…What if a lake monster grabs my foot??

Starting this blog feels a bit like the trepidation and rush of adrenaline I remember feeling when I was young and about to take the plunge off a dock into a murky lake. Making that leap was always more than worth it though so here goes nothing!

Who am I?

I am a speech-language pathologist who works primarily with preschool students who attend special education classrooms at a school in California.

What is The Communication Window about?

I would like to think of it as view inside the world of speech therapy, children with autism, and special education. Hopefully my experiences and insights in those areas will be beneficial to readers with an interest in that world.