Let’s talk about getting creative with speech therapy activities!
Being creative with therapy is a must! A student with significant deficits might spend a great deal of time in speech therapy. Looking at the same articulation or language cards can get boring. I get bored, so I know my students and clients get bored! When boredom sets in, we can decrease productivity or even an increase in behaviors!
We need to make speech therapy fun but functional.
- We don’t always have the time or the resources for new cards or activities
- Some sounds or targets have limited options
Thus creativity becomes a plus.
Here are some ideas for getting creative with speech therapy activities!
These are some of the ways I can make a card or vocabulary set seem new every day:
Poppers –oh, what you can do with poppers for speech activities!
- Place their target on the floor and have them try to hit the target. This is a great way to work on coarticulation and length of utterance. While working with a client at 3-4 syllables phrases with s-blends, I had him say “I pop a snake” or “I hit a snake,” for example. They worked on turn-taking, and he shared the popper with me. He then would say, “you hit a snake.”
- For early communicators, this is great for CV utterances and interactions. “Wow, oh, pah, bah, pop, up, go” are some of the targets you can use.
- Great for following directions! I will have the students take turns with the poppers. I then ask them to find something using target basic concepts/prepositions and then hit it with the popper. So, for example, I might say, “hit the book that is on the bookshelf” or “pop the bottom of the trashcan.”
Throwing Cards – Yes, I said it! THROW THE CARDS! I aim for their feet or for the ground around them (most of the time). If it is a group with lots of energy, I make it a bit of a dash to get their cards. This game can quickly get out of hand, so I only use this with small groups or individual clients.
- House of Cards – My CFY year, I remember keeping the students from handling and messing with the cards. Then I saw a blog post about how the SLP let the kids build houses with their “correct” cards. Motivation, motivation, motivation! So when a student gets a target correct, they get that card to create their masterpiece. Sometimes I am even nice and give them a tissue as base support!
Dinosaur attack – This can be used with pretty much any animal or figure. I have a private client working on multisyllabic words and s-blends. I used the dinosaur to eat/attach/choose the cards. Then I asked, “who at the card (snake or whatever the name of the card is)?”. The child responded with “dinosaur.” I then asked, “what did he eat?” Since we are working on s-blends in short phrases, I had him respond, “he ate the snake.”