Speech Language Play

Leafing Through Speech Goals September 20, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — speechlanguageplay @ 10:42 pm

I have to apologize for the fact that I have been MIA. Over the past few months I have gotten engaged, got a new job, and have planned a wedding (in what would be considered less time than is humanly possible).

So I will just leave you with a tiny bit of good stuff to start the year off right. Since many of you (including me) make a fall themed bulletin board, I thought that it would be great to have students reflect on their goals while making a fun little play on word “Leafing through my speech goals” (“leafing” as related to leaves but also to all the IEP’s I’ve had to read over the last few days.)

Students can verbally state, write, or select a symbol related to what their goals are and why they are working towards those goals.

Simple little double sided book that can be used with kids of all abilities.




Giveaway of “The Monster at the End of This Book” App May 30, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — speechlanguageplay @ 11:02 pm

I have been offered a free code for this really awesome app, so if you would like it, please do any of the following and post a comment for each one that you complete. I will pick a winner on Thursday June 7th. 


You can post a link to my blog on facebook, twitter, pinterest, or anywhere else its relevant.

You can follow my blog. (This would make me happiest of all)

You can like Callaway Digital Arts, and send them a hello from SpeechLangaugePlay https://www.facebook.com/CallawayDigitalArts#

Or you can just leave me a message about what you would be interested in reading on my blog.


You’re Graduating! Now what….. May 26, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — speechlanguageplay @ 9:31 am

I have been lucky these past few years to have such amazing graduate interns. They are eager for

Imageinformation and their zeal for therapy is unmatched. It renews my own enthusiasm in therapy and makes me give extra thought to what I am doing therapeutically and why I am doing it. One part of being a supervisor is answering questions and making sure graduate interns get an honest view of what working in the profession looks like (the good: trips to Toys R US for fun, and the bad: too many students, and almost endless paper work)

A wonderful and creative former graduate student of mine Katrina Van Sluyk wrote this guest post on some of the questions she used to ask me about life after graduation. So please enjoy!


Congratulations to all the January, May, and August 2012 graduates! You did it! Commencement services are fast approaching or have passed and you now hold a Master’s Degree in Speech Language Pathology!! Parties, dinners, imitate gatherings, and celebrations are now over and you are in search of your first job, a Clinical Fellowship Year (CFY) position in Speech Language Pathology.  This is a very exciting time in your life but can be also be very scary.

The beauty of our field is that there are so many possible employment opportunities.  If you don’t already know, you need to decide what population you want to work with.  After completing my placements, I knew I wanted to work with pediatrics.  During my last semester of graduate school, I had a ton of questions regarding what I should look for in an agency, school and/or supervisor before I accept a CFY position. Viky, my supervisor at the time, gave me a lot of useful advice about what I should look for when choosing my CFY position.

I am going to try to answer those questions and help advise you based on the advice that was given to me.  Here is the advice that was given to me when seeking a placement that I would like to pass on to you:

First, I hate to be the bearer of this news, but it very difficult to find a CFY position.  Once you have spent time searching the known websites including www.advanceweb.com, www.indeed.com, www.speechpathology.com and www.craigslist.com, just to name a few, you will see that many of the agencies, private practices, and both private and charter schools are looking for certified SLPs with a few years of experience.  Keeping in mind, that CFY positions are limited from the start, and let’s face it, we all want to finish our 9 months ASAP, to become Certified Speech Language Pathologists, I suggest not settling for the first position that is offered after you ace the interview.  A CFY position is an extremely critical time as we still have a lot to learn in the field.  This is the last time we will have a Supervisor guiding us as we treat disorders and cases we did not come across during our graduate internships and externships.

You will need to choose which aspects of your CFY are most important for you.

  1. Other therapists, CFY’s on site (like the saying goes “two heads are better than one”) to bounce ideas off, share materials, and ask questions to obtain an immediate answer
  2.  A full time position is always better than part time (full times requires 9 months, part time is longer)
  3. A salaried position (getting paid for days off/sick days, benefits)
  4. A Supervisor that is always available (phone, email, text messaging-being able to use all modes of communication)
  5. Supervisor observation (how often does the supervisor comes to observe you)
  6. A convenient location (consider travel expensive)
  7. Mode of transportation (distance from train/bus to site of employment, parking arrangements if driving)
  8. Dress code of employer
  9. Methodology of treatment (play therapy vs. structured ABA/PECS therapy)
  10. Group vs. individual therapy (you may get paid per hour not per person seen)
  11. Requirements of paperwork/reports (is there time built into the day to complete paperwork, or done on your own time)
  12. When considering working with junior high school/high school-the nature of our field is changing to include more fields so consider the requirements of the child that includes reading and writing therapy
  13. Working environment (your own room, sharing a room with multiple therapists, or working in a hallway, using different rooms)
  14. Availability of resources (therapy materials, computer, I-pad, specialized computer programs)

If this was not mentioned in your graduate courses it is a vital piece of information and if it was, I think it is worth repeating: CHECK WITH YOUR STATE ABOUT THE REQUIREMENTS FOR A CFY!!!!!!!!

In New York State (where I am) you are only allowed two Supervisors during the total time of your CFY position (9 months full-time/more for part-time).  You will need to stay a total of six months at one position (either full-time (35 hrs/per week) or part-time (a minimum of two days per week consisting of no less than 12 hrs/per week) in order for your hours to count towards NYS Certification.  Here is the link with additional valuable information for New York State’s requirements for Certification.   http://www.op.nysed.gov/prof/slpa/speechlic.htm#exp

—-Katrina Van Sluyk


Spring Food Craft- Field of Sprouts May 17, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — speechlanguageplay @ 10:18 am

I have been working on the planting/gardening theme for a bit of time. We have read books, planted seeds, repotted plants, made art projects, and played in the dirt. I wanted to create a food craft to round out the theme while reinforcing the students’ use of vocabulary and their ability to follow directions with the new vocabulary. This is just a fun project they can eat.Image

I also thought it would be good for students to see the whole process from planting the seeds, watching them grown, watering them, and “harvesting” and eating. The kids should be able to taste what they planted (I personally love sprouts) and it was great to see some of my students asking for more sprouts.



For each student:

1 slice of whole wheat bread

1 tablespoon for cream cheese

1 slice of banana

5-10 sprouts (I used sunflower) but if you use smaller ones like (alfalfa) you may want to use more.

1 ziploc bag or a small bowl (for mixing)

1 spoon for mixing and spreading

1 drop of blue food coloring


1. Mix the cream cheese with a drop of food coloring.

2.Spread the blue sky on the bread

3. A slice of banana for the sun in the sky.

4. Sprouts in the soil.


I worked on reinforcing the vocabulary: sprouts, sun, field, sky, sun, soil, planting, farmer.

My students loved this recipe.


Mothers Day Craft May 10, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — speechlanguageplay @ 9:57 pm

With some of my older (and more involved) students, I make sure to give them some level of control in the activities that we do. I sometimes give them a choice between two options, and sometimes (much like for this following craft) I leave the instructions more open ended.

I introduced this particular student to Pinterest and gave her the following directions: “find a craft that you can make for mother’s day.”

She found this mother’s day ice cream cone with adjectives for sprinkles.

Once the task was selected, she had to make a list of necessary materials, walk to the reception desk to request the materials, and decide how to make a similar “cone.”Image

I made that task harder by having her write a sentence for each word that she use to describe her mom. We then added a cover and made it a card (we glued it on backwards so you will have to forgive us).


Happy Mother’s Day


The Very Hungry Caterpillar (simple craft) April 26, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — speechlanguageplay @ 5:16 pm
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I have been seeing a million and one wonderful crafts, so why throw my recent adventure into the mix. I created this craft during a shared book reading task to give my children manipulatives to play with.



  • Green streamer (or green tissue paper cut into long strips)
  • Googly eyes
  • Brown Tissue to wrap the caterpillar (streamer) while it’s in the cocoon
  • Tissue paper of various colors (cut/ripped into random shapes) for butterfly wings
  • Construction paper butterfly (precut by therapist)
  1. First make the caterpillar by cutting a length of streamer (approximately 1 foot) and paste eyes onto it.
  2. Use the caterpillar throughout the book reading to eat all the foods in the book
  3. When the caterpillar gets larger in the book, have the kids wrap the caterpillar in brown tissue paper and put it to sleep in the cocoon.
  4. While “metamorphosis” occurs, decorate the wings of the butterfly with the tissue paper. You can have the kids follow a pattern of putting the tissue paper one (blue, red, green, blue, red, ____) and this task is also good for increasing fine motor control, as the kids have to take only one piece of tissue paper at a time, and sequence putting glue on the paper wings and then pasting the tissue paper down.
  5. Once the wings are complete the caterpillar is ready to come out of the cocoon and get to use his wings (paste the streamer onto the butterfly wings)
  6. TAH DAH!!!!
  7. Don’t forget to review the vocabulary related to butterflies, which will differ based on the age and target goals for each child.

Expressive/Receptive idea for a group activity April 18, 2012

In honor of the guest post that will be up on Speech Bop next week, I want to continue talking about a group therapy. My current graduate student and I have been working on perfecting a group activity for a mismatched group with very different goals.

In the group, we have 2 students: the first student has difficulty listening and attending, and the second has difficulty formulating sentences and with word finding.

This activity is simple to put together and helps both students target their goals while working together.

The basic premise is: every student gets the same coloring sheet, and each takes turns giving their peer a direction. The student who has difficulty formulating sentences/finding the correct words, has visual supports and a word bank of sorts, whereas the student who has difficulty attending to the directive needs to listen to the directive and ask for clarification from his peer.

By the end of the session, the students are taking turns, and I as a therapist can take a bit of time to write down session notes.

One difficulty that I have encountered: sometimes students don’t want to color their picture in the way they were directed to by a peer. A solution to this is that the students are making the pictures for each other, so “you have to tell your friend how you want your picture colored, and then you can trade pictures.”

I have created a couple of simple sheets that can be laminates and reused again and again.

This is the basic template: (click on the image to download it)


The color coded columns and blocks help kids put the pictures from the word bank to to corresponding spot in the sentence strip at the top. I would suggest color pictures be put into each column.

I put together a simple spring planting activity with the images put into it the sentence strip page. I copied the pictures from “speaking of speech” http://www.speakingofspeech.com/AugCom_Materials.html which has simple Boardmaker boards sorted by group/category that would cover most early education topics. I also added the corresponding coloring sheets that could be used. I suggest printing 2 copies, cutting out one of the pages into each individual icon, and using Velcro to make this sheet reusable.

Hope this has been helpful! Happy Spring!!! (Or Summer as it has been close to 80 degrees here in NYC the last few days).


Speech Language Play Therapeutic Services September 13, 2009

I are starting this website to help parents, professionals, and students. I will be providing reviews, websites, and current information about the field of Speech-Language Pathology, as well as closely related fields. Please do not hesitate to contact me, should you have any questions. I look forward to hearing from you.