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As I sit here listening to the college basketball games in the background, I am getting even more excited for my therapy plans this coming week.

I'm using a new to me book, Salt in His Shoes:  Michael Jordan in Pursuit of a Dream by Delores Jordan. (no affiliation). I created a minimal prep book companion to go along with the text. It includes a variety of speech and language activities for mixed therapy groups, suggested K-3. I've pinned a read aloud too. 

For reinforcement and movement, I happen to have a mini basketball hoop on my door (similar to this one).

Suggested ways I use the hoop in my speech room:

Allow a set number of minutes following skill and drill practice-I set a timer for 2 minutes, work with one student for articulation drill and allow others to take turns shooting hoops. Then switch students.

For younger students, I stand at the front of the line and do 5 quick drills and then allow a shot, move to the end of the line, repeat process!

For students working on language tasks, I usually do the lesson and then allow 3-5 minutes of a continuous line of shooting for students in the group.

Here is a free app that will allow for 45 seconds of basketball fun should you not have a speech room or to accommodate some push-in or quick hallway drills! My boys love this app!

My SLP friend from All Y'All Need has these basketball language activities for younger and upper elementary students. My copies are already printed and ready for use!

It's also a short and extremely busy week for me. The light at the end of the tunnel is spring break! Happy hooping it up in speech therapy to you!

March is true to its motto coming in like a lion. My busy life as an SLP and mom of three is actually helping to motivate me to be ultra organized and driven to accomplish my long list of to-dos. This month is filled with overlapping sports for my children, both winter and spring colliding, many IEP meetings, spring conferences, and the school-wide talent show in which I help organize. So, my plans for therapy need to carry me through much of March!

I recently finished my Leprechaun Speech and Language Unit which includes a variety of themed therapy tasks for mixed groups all surrounding a leprechaun theme. I so enjoy creating these thematic packs as the research part is so engaging. I try to create at least one activity for each of my groups K-5 in the themed packets. There are also ample reinforcement activities to pair with any skill and drill activity. I have my March Monthly Themed Therapy pack all ready for those quick drill times, too!

What I am most excited about is a communication engineering project that I know my students will love! I was a bit overwhelmed at the end of last week, so in routine fashion, I organized and purged items in my therapy room. In doing so, I found lots of recycled items that would be perfect for a Leprechaun Trap Challenge! The OT in my building says I would be perfect for Let's Make a Deal, so why not test out this proposition.

Here is what I found:

gold coins
shamrock erasers
toilet paper rolls
Washi tape
popsicle sticks
paper plates
plastic spoons
plastic cups
index cards

Along with glue, tape, crayons, makers, and a stapler, I believe we have our materials.  After my students learn all about leprechauns during our therapy sessions, I am going to have them use their very best communication skills to work as a group to create a leprechaun trap. 

At home, to test out my idea, I also gathered a collection of materials and in no time my engineering-minded middle child, crafted up this trap.

My youngest and best product tester, used her attention to detail to complete the drawing.


Here are some communication targets that I will be prompting for/eliciting during the challenge. 

Carryover of speech sounds in conversation, increasing utterances, past/present/future tense sentences, pronouns, conjunctions, complex sentence structures, following and understanding directions, understanding target vocabulary and concepts, using specific vocabulary and making associations. taking another’s perspective, verbal sequencing, turn taking and conversational skills, executive functioning, listening/attending and topic maintenance, and fluent speaking.

Here is a list of some vocabulary that can be targeted:
St. Patrick’s Day

Do you think you might be able to incorporate this leprechaun trap challenge into your therapy plans? I have made the worksheet and a couple variations into a freebie you can snag here.

Here's to going out like lamb which will be spring break for me! 

I'm fortunate to be the recipient of many acts of kindness. I must be lucky at choosing some really special people to surround myself! The Frenzied SLPs are just one of the many circles that spread their kindness my way. We've teamed up again this month, this time to bring you a sharing kindness blog hop with sweet posts and FREEBIES!

My first random act of communication kindness is to give you this Sharing Kindness Articulation FREEBIE for print and go therapy this month. It includes a worksheet for /k, f, s, r/ sounds, open-ended worksheets to create your own targets, and a carryover sharing kindness flap book to use in a variety of ways.  Go ahead and download this freebie!

This month, I'm teaming up with another SLP in my district to share random acts of communication kindness lessons in classrooms! Her students have already practiced their communication skills by delivering kindness classroom packets to all teachers in our building. The packet challenges classrooms to become part of the Kind Kids Club by completing acts of kindness. You can find some ideas and be inspired from the originator on the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation site (no affiliation). When we carryout our lessons, we plan on discussing communicating with kindness, working on some conversational skills activities, and completing a short kindness craftivity. We are bringing along our OT pals too for our push-in co-treating lessons, as students on our caseloads will be our go-to communication assistants! Some students will create the flap book (from my freebie resource) to illustrate how to share kindness and others will create a "just write" craftivity using hearts and pencils. This later craftivity is part of my Valentine Speech and Language packet, but you can make your own easily with these items.

How will you share kindness this month?  Check our the other posts and freebies by clicking below!

As we make our resolutions for 2017, I am adding a literacy resolution to the list. You might know I absolutely love bringing literature books into my therapy sessions. This practice likely accounts for more than 50% of my therapy plans. I can target just about any goal using a literature book and really stretch its content from kindergarten through grade 3 and sometimes beyond (although, I often use curriculum texts for grades 4 and 5). Today, I'm focusing my literacy resolution on my phonological kindergarteners.

Since sight word reading is such a huge part of the kindergarten curriculum, why not make a resolution to include sight word practice within my therapy sessions? I have quite a few students receiving therapy for phonological disorders within my kindergarten population.  I love working with these patterned errors and highly motivated littles. The progress they make is truly remarkable!

I'm impatient!  {Yep, it's officially in print.} I find drill at the isolation, syllable, and even word level pretty monotonous. I often move past these levels quickly. It may even help generalization occur quicker. In fact, just before break, I was talking with a kindergarten teacher about a student I recently re-screened. All of sudden, she asked if she could hug me. Well, I agreed, and she proceeded to tell me she was thanking me for the progress one of her unintelligible students has made. I picked up this student week one of school when we knew she needed my help:) Cycles, minimal pairs, carrier phrases, and reinforcement have been my go-to tools with lots of repetitions!

I made this carrier phrases in action DIY some time back and I use it ALL THE TIME!  My students always grab a phrase on their way to the table now! In fact, if I don't plan to use phrases, they take one anyway!

This year, I'm resolving to use sight word practice within my phonological therapy regularly, if not every session. I've updated an old go-to Carrier Phrases product to help you add this resolution to your literacy list as well {it's pictured to the left of my DIY above}.

The freebie comes with a variety of carrier phrases and images to help those little readers. There are also additional cards to manipulate the sentence for your needs.

Just pair with your favorite stack of articulation cards or write words right on the strip. I laminated all of mine and placed them in a handy zippered pouch.

What are your literacy resolutions for 2017?

Don't miss our Instagram giveaway that begins 1/6/2017 at 7:00am EST and ends 1/8/2017 at 8:00pm EST!  Start @sparklleslp. You could win four Yeti-themed products, a Yeti mug, and Yeti in My Spaghetti!  

My students had so much fun with Gingerbread Speech and Language that I created Yeti Speech and Language. I never knew I would learn so much creating these units. Do you believe in Yetis? Would you like to stay in the Yak & Yeti hotel in Nepal?  I have experienced Expedition Everest quite a few times at Animal Kingdom and even enjoyed the cuisine at the Yak & Yeti restaurant there. This Yeti theme is already a huge hit with my students. My daughter received the game Yeti in My Spaghetti for Christmas and it has already made its way to my therapy room!

Check out a few of the contents in my unit, which will be on sale for 50% off on 1/7/2017 for the #jan17slpmusthave SALE too!

Reinforcement activities galore!

A non-fiction text, conjunctions, analogies, listening for details, and Tier 2 vocabulary.

A barrier activity, word list and articulation open-ended worksheet, Tier 1 describing, and Yeti-themed recipes!

Regular and irregular verbs, verb worksheet, and location concepts.

Don't forget to check out these other Yeti-themed materials from my SLP friends!

Yeti Inferencing and Vocabulary

Yeti Subordinating Conjunctions

The Abominable "No"-Man

Are you Yeti for a fun speech and language theme? I'm Yeti for a giveaway here too! Comment below with your email for a chance to win my Yeti Speech and Language Unit.

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