Superhero Bulletin Board

This year, my school wide theme is superheroes!  I love the theme, as I feel we all have superpowers within ourselves.

I have a large bulletin board outside my room that I love to decorate once or twice a year.  Sometimes I will put projects that my students have worked on, but sometimes I just pick something that goes with our theme and kind of stick to that for the year.  This year I had a vision of a city skyline with superheroes flying around.  I started with my basic blue background (fabric that I put on the board three years ago and still looks great).  Then, I took a large piece of black paper from the bulletin board paper roll.  I freestyle cut out the city buildings in one large piece (really not that hard-I promise).  I put that up on the board, and then I had to cut out all of the tiny yellow windows.  I asked the kindergarten teacher across the hall from me to please remind me next time I had an idea like this that cutting out hundreds of tiny pieces of paper is not fun!

I glued all of the tiny yellow piece onto the black paper to create the windows.  I also divided the buildings up using a white crayon.

I wish now that I had made my title "We Are Super Communicators!"  I might have to add the "we are" at a later date now that the title came to me.  Have I mentioned though that I hate moving letters around on bulletin boards?!?!

For my little superheroes, I used a set from Pink Cat Studio that you could find HERE.  I also found the superhero speech bubbles in her store HERE.  If you don't want to buy a whole packet of clipart though, you could use speech bubbles like these that I found from another of my favorite artists, Educlips.

I am planning on putting together another bulletin board game like I did last year to fit my superhero theme.  Look for that soon, as I will probably have some freebies to help you create one too.

Data Collection with a {FREEBIE}

I have talked to you before about my super high low tech way of keeping data, but I wanted to show you again for this linky full of great ideas for how to collect your data.  Plus, I added a freebie!

My way of keeping data is super simple.  I just have a manilla file folder for each student that I keep in a drawer with green hanging files for each day.  I write the name of the student and the days of the week that they attend sessions on the tab.  Then, I put a copy of their goals on the left side of the file folder and keep a data sheet open on the other side.  I also put any worksheets, notes from parents, or other items in the folder for daily use.

At the end of the year, I take out the data sheets and any other items that need to be saved and place them in the students' main file.

As for my actual data collection, I use a sheet that simply has 9 boxes and allows me to write the date, and circle whether it was an individual session or group session.  I also included a space to write how many students are in the group (I need this for Medicaid billing).  I also love to use colored pens for these data sheets, just because the colors usually brighten my day. :)

To keep data, I use a +/- system.  First, I write a quick detail of what we are working on (in the sample it is /s/ initial).  Then, I give the student a plus for a correct production and a minus for incorrect.  If the production is heavily prompted, I will circle the plus sign.  After ten products, I put a slash mark so that the productions are easier for me to count later.

You can get a copy of my simple data sheet HERE.  

Thanks for checking out my way of collecting data!  Hopefully you will click through the rest of the great bloggers in the linky to see their ideas too.

Back to School: What's in your Cart? {LINKY}

I can't believe I am saying this but the TpT Back to School Sale is here!  Monday, August 3, and Tuesday, August 4, my store, Speech Universe, and many others will be 20% off.  You can get an additional 10% off when you put in the code BTS15 at checkout.

Now, for the fun part, the linky!  Thanks to Jenna over at Speech Room News for hosting this fun way to share lots of great products for the sale.  You can click on through and find lots of great products for the new school year.

Here are some things I think you might love from Speech Universe.

First, one of my favorite things from last year was my Paper Bag Articulation Books.  My kids LOVED making these.  I have added a lot of sounds to the bundle since last fall, and think you might really love this packet as much as I do.

Next, I think you might really like my Interactive Articulation Books.  There are a bunch of sounds in this packet, and you can also purchase the sounds separately.  I had so much fun using these last year.
Speaking of interactive books, I also have a new set of Back to School Interactive Books to share
with you!

The last thing you might be interested in is my Speech and Language Homework Calendars.  These are great to send home all year to target language and articulation skills.  The awesome thing about these is that they are updated for you every year!

I have three great things that I am really excited about in my cart!

First is something I am really looking forward to using to work on inferencing and predicting.  It has real pictures that I can use on an iPad.  Say Cheese!  Using Photographs to Target Inferences & Predictions  by LyndaSLP123 is this product.

Next is Figurative Language ~ In Pop Music by SLP Runner.  I have some students who absolutely love and are motivated by pop music, so this will be perfect for them!

The last thing I have in my cart that I think you might enjoy too is a minimal-pairs product by Speech2U.  Minimal Pairs, Stopping, Phonology, Speech Therapy is a bundle of several minimal pair products.  It looks great!

There you go!  Some great ideas for you to stock up on before the school year.  For some of you, there is plenty of time left in the summer to prep these products before school starts too!  Not that we want to think about it yet, but it is coming...

Thanks again to Jenna for hosting this fun linky!  Go to Speech Room News to see who else has linked up with their carts.

The Best Things I Learned This Summer

The Best Thing I Learned This Summer.  What a question!  When I first heard it, my initial response was that this summer I learned that I eat too much, drink too much (at least that is what my waistline is telling me), and buying and selling a house is very stressful!  I think I have learned all of those things, but I have also learned some better things this summer too.  Here are three things I learned this summer...

First, I really love Michigan!  Sometimes in winter, I am really not sure why I live where I do, but then summer hits.  This summer, my family took a vacation to the Traverse City area where we rented a cottage on the water.  It was amazing!  It was so relaxing with lots of time for some family bonding!  Here is a picture of the view from Sleeping Bear Dunes:

The second thing I learned this summer was how to use Periscope!  What a fun, new social media app that is available on both Apple and Android phones.  It is a live streaming app that is owned by Twitter.  I have only done two videos so far, but I have been watching a ton of them, and they are so fun!  You can really learn a little bit more about your favorite SLP bloggers, celebrities, and companies.

The last thing I learned is truly that buying and selling a home is a huge job, and very stressful.  At the end of the school year, we decided to sell our home that we have been in for 12 years.  We have outgrown it a bit, and wanted a change.  So, the last two months have been a whirlwind, and now, I am moving on Saturday!!!  We are all excited for the new changes to come.

Hope you are enjoying your summer, and are learning a thing or two also.  Share something that you have learned this summer in the comments- I would love to hear about them!

Tips for Tuesday: Updating your Purchases on TpT

One of the great things about purchasing items on Teachers Pay Teachers (TpT) is that when authors update their work (which I often do) you can easily get these updates by following these simple steps:

1.  Go to My TpT and click on My Purchases.

2.  Next, sort your purchases by changing the sort to Recently Revised.  Then, look for products with the red Newly Revised Re-Download button.

3.  Then, you can click on the Description of Revision button to see what has changed.

4.  Last, simply click the Download Now button to get the most updated version of the product.

Pretty easy, right?

There are a few reasons that I might update a product: 
  • I may have missed something when I proofread the original product, and had to make some fixes or changes for that reason. Oops!  Sorry about that one!
  • I may have looked at the original product and realized that I don't really like how it looks anymore.  In creating new products, I have changed my style over the years, and I want all of my products to reflect my latest updated style.  This usually translates into new graphics, easier printing options, and sometimes additional activities within the product.
  • I update my homework calendars and planners every year so that you will have pages for the most current year.
  • I added a new packet to a bundle (E.G., Interactive Articulation Books- I continue to add sounds to this bundle.)
Here is a product that I recently updated:

For the Roll it, Say it, Keep it Bundle, I added some sounds and also completely updated the look of the entire product.  I also added a low ink, black and white option.

Here is a freebie that I have recently updated.

Please go and either update it or grab it HERE.

 Hopefully this tip will help you this week! 

Let me know what else you need help with, and it may turn into a new Tips for Tuesday post!

Fall Interactive Books

Hi everyone!  Hope your summer is going well.  I am having a blast staying at home this summer with my boys.  I am also in the midst of moving too.  We purchased a new house, and are moving this month.  It has been a crazy time, but we are all excited.

I can't believe it, but fall will be coming before we know it!  I know, how dare I say that!?  But, in my free time between packing and just generally relaxing, I created the last in my series of seasonal interactive books.  My newest addition is for, you guessed it, FALL!

I think these Fall Interactive Books turned out really cute.  I can't wait to use them with my students!  They have been kid tested though, by my very own little monkeys. :)

There are three books in this set:
Fall Activities
Fall Clothes
What Do You See?

Each of these books has ten pages with an interactive piece for each page.  Your students will be quickly engaged with these repetitive sentences in each book.  There are detailed instructions for how to put each of these books together using Velcro and either binder rings or a book binder.

Here are some samples from each book:

Fall Activities:

 Fall Clothes:

 What Do You See?

I have loved using this series of books with my students with ASD as well as some of my younger students in Kindergarten and First grade.  There are so many opportunities for sentence expansion, and it also encourages early reading with the repetitive sentences.  I use these books to work on WH questions too.  With these books, you can target WHAT, WHO, and WHEN questions very easily.

I hope you like these books as much as I do!  You can get them here: Fall Interactive Books

Listening Power Preschool: Review and {GIVEAWAY}

I have another great app that I was able to review this week!  This one is from Hamaguchi Apps, and is called Listening Power Preschool.

Don't let the name fool you.  I am using this with my elementary population in grades K-2.  It is also great with some of my older students with ASD.

I am so excited to share this app with you today!  I absolutely LOVE Hamaguchi Apps.  I use the Fun With Verbs & Sentences all of the time.  So, when I was asked to review this new app, I jumped at the chance!!!!  The most exciting part is that Hamaguchi Apps has offered to giveaway not one, but TWO copies of this app!

Listening Power Preschool starts out very similarly to most of the Hamaguchi Apps.  You will go and select a user.  You can add in your different students and then decide if one person is playing or a group of students.

After I enter my players, I actually went back to the home page to select the settings.  There are several different things you can play with.

  • Activities: You can select the level and how many choices for each of the five different activities.  You can also choose whether or not you want the app to automatically advance your student after a correct choice or if you want to manually advance.  This is a great feature because you can talk about each item with plenty of time before the next item pops up.
  • Answer Choices: You can have the choices automatically pop up, or you can push a button to "Show Choices."  This option can also give you extra time in between the presentation of the items and when the choices pop up.
  • Levels: This gives you the option to automatically drop or advance a level based on how many the student gets correct or incorrect.  There is also a manual option to change the level.  I really liked when it automatically increased or decreased difficulty for my students.  Sometimes I might over or under estimate my students, and this quickly remedies the situation for me.
  • Bubble Game: This is an incentive that students can earn after they work.  You have the option to turn this on or off.  You also have the option for the game to pop up after 1 activity, 3 activities, 5 activities, 8 activities, 10 activities, or 15 activities.  That's a lot of options!

You also have the options to track or not track progress, turn the text on or off, and also have narration and story sounds turned on or off.

Now, on to the activities!  These are so great!

Listening for Directions
This activity targets concepts such as on, in, out, on, up, down, behind, line up, sit down, stop, underline, cross out, and more.  Students listen to a direction and then choose their answer.  There is a pause between the direction and the choices so that students are not looking at the visual cues while listening.  This forces them to use their auditory memory skills.

Listening for Descriptions
This activity targets adjectives such as colors, big/little, happy, sad, clean/direty, hot/cold, stripes, spots, soft/hard, round, and square.  Again, students listen to the direction and then pick an answer from a choice of two, three, or four pictures.

Listening for Grammar and Meaning
This activity focuses on plurals, verb tenses, pronouns, preposition concepts, and negation.

Listening for Stories with Pictures
A story is read with accompanying pictures and sound effects, followed by quesitons about the story such as who, what, and where questions.


Listening for Stories without Pictures
This activity is the same as above, except the student is not shown pictures during the story.  The student must stay focused and imagine the story, then answer simple questions about the story.  An animation after the story shows some aspect of the story.

After your student is finished with this app, you can check out the data that was recorded for the session.  This is all saved by date for your to use later also, which is great when doing progress reports!

What do I think?
I think this app is very versatile!  I used it with a variety of students ages 5-11.  I used it with some of my older students who are developmentally delayed, and it fit their goals perfectly.  I loved all of the options for choices of answers, presentation of items, and levels of activities.  There isn't anything else I would want to see, because I think they really nailed this app!  It's great!

You can get Listening Power Preschool at the app store for $15.99.  You can also enter to win a copy here!  Hamaguchi Apps was very generous to offer not just one copy, but two copies of this app for a giveaway!  Just enter the rafflecopter below by Thursday, June 18 at 11:59 pm EST for your chance to win one of the two copies of this app.

a Rafflecopter giveaway