I Spy | A Gift of Speech

Playing “I Spy” for speech therapy

I love using “I spy” for articulation and for increasing length of utterance.  It is a fun and easy activity that requires little to no preparation.  You can use “I Spy” to work on articulation or language.  Below is an example of how I use this game for articulation.

Items to use for I Spy:  things in the room, pictures (like the ones in the collage above), sound cards, and books.  What are some ways that you play “I Spy”?

Word Level S-blends articulation

  • Word Level:  I will ask the child “what do you see?”.  I model saying “spy”.  I do not add the “I” until I know that the child has mastered “spy”.  We then practice naming things that we see.  So it might look like this:
    • Therapist: What do you spy?  Say spy.
    • Child:  spy
    • Therapist:  What do you spy?
    • Child:  Names an item in the room.  Have them share what they see at the appropriate level.  Since you aren’t adding “I spy” yet, this could look like: “a chair” or “a table”.
  • Once a child has mastered saying spy, I add “I” or “he/she” spy.
  • We work on “I spy”, “he/she spies”, and “they spy” until that is solid.
  • Once I know the student can say “I spy” and “a chair”, we put them together and move to the phrase level.
  • I always remind myself that there is a big jump from word to phrases, so I make those jumps meet the needs of my student.

Articulation S-blends at the phrase level

  • Phrase level:  I ask the child “what do you see?”.  I model “I spy a chair”. So this is what it might look like:
    • Therapist:  What do you spy?  Tell me,  “I spy a …”
    • Child:  I spy a …
    • Therapist:  I like how you included all of your sounds.  Let’s see what else we can spy

This is a great activity for working on coarticulation and increasing the length of utterance, whether you are focusing on s-blends or not.

How do you use “I Spy” in speech therapy?