Wednesday, November 21, 2012

ASHA Conference 2012

I have so much to report since the last time I updated Mrs. Ludwig's Speech Room! I had fully intended on updating day-by-day at the 2012 ASHA Convention, but my time there was SO busy & time got away!

Hello, Atlanta! 
(this was about all of the city I actually saw)

First off, it was AMAZING! So much great information. Here's a brief rundown on of my highlights:

  • The opening speaker was Maya Angelou - pretty amazing! The best shot I could get:

"If you don't like something, change it. 
If you can't change it, change your attitude." - Maya A.

  • There were so many great oral seminars that I often had to make tough choices about which one to actually attend!
  • I gathered some great resources, tips & tricks. I'll post the best share-able resources here.
  • The iPads at convention were EVERYWHERE! You know you're at a convention with SLPs, when.... :) And several sessions were dedicated to iPad use in therapy. 
A Few iPad Resources
The Opposites:
Cost: FREE
    This one is pretty cool and I find myself even wanting to play! It's a little like old-school Tetris. Words float up and once you see an opposite pair, you click on the pair of words and they disappear. If the words pile up, you lose!

    There are 10 different levels. 
    Harder levels = harder words.
    Level 1 (left) has easier opposites than Level 3 (right).

    At the end of each level is a bonus round where you have 20 seconds to click all the opposites. I like this one!

The next iPad app is called Toontastic:


This app creates an animated comic strip with a beginning, middle, and end. It's a neat for storytelling and generating a narrative. Each box is a part of the animated comic strip: 

Setup, Conflict, Challenge, Climax, Resolution. 
You can delete or add any of the parts of the story
 if they don't work for your narrative.

When you click on the first box "Setup", you get to pick your Setting.

....or draw your own! One feature I wish it had is the option of adding your own photo.  But it doesn't, so I'll deal. :)

Then you pick your characters. Once they're all in place, you're ready to record your animation and narrative for the "Setting" part of your story. 

You record your story while moving your characters around. When you're finished, you can play your audio recording back along with the character movement that was added during your recording.

Once you complete the steps described above for each box (mine are still empty), you can play your entire comic strip story complete with animation and audio. 

Pretty neat.....and the best's FREE!

A few highlights from the Oral Seminars

For my younger LI/SI kids this session was really great:
Concomitant Speech & Language Impairment: Effect Practice for Optimal Outcomes. Presenters Ann Tyler & Gail Gillon
  • Lots of my LI/SI kids struggle with literacy. This session offered lots of cool evidence-based resources that merge the research with practice. Go see for yourself!!
      • Explicit lesson plans for specific books
      • Materials to print:
      • Progress Monitoring Sheets

And for my upper elementary & middle school kids, this one was useful: 
SLPs Enhancing Students' Language Skills in STEM Disciplines. Presenters: Janet Proly, Karen Davis, Melissa Malani, and Kimberly Murza

  • The STEM (science, technology, engineering, & math) disciplines are becoming a big focus in the academic world.
  • For LI kids, math and science texts can be difficult to break down and are each written in their own language
  • The presenters gave a handout for breaking down academic text. Here were their Top 10 Questions to ask for disciplinary texts:

....and that is a very, very brief look at my time in Atlanta, but I hope those resources/links are useful! 

Now that I'm back very professionally-developed and energized with lots of new ideas, I've gotten back to work on some of my therapy activities for the holidays! 

Here's a preview of my Holiday Packet I'm working on:  
Coming soon to a blog & TPT store near you! :) 

And since it's almost Thanksgiving, one more turkey for you! When thinking what she was thankful for, a cute kindergartner pulled out a Fruit Rollup from her pocket and copied the letters exactly (even the O!, we'll work on the S...). 

Enjoy your holiday, thanks for checking in, and have a very very happy Thanksgiving!!

~Mrs. Ludwig

Monday, November 12, 2012

DOS: the "Uno-Like" Speech Sound Card Game

Time to introduce a game that I think will be in my therapy toolbox for a very long time. **drum roll, pleeeease**

The game is called DOS: the "Uno-like" Speech Sound Card Game (Dos as in Spanish for two). My kids LOVE to play Uno, so I made a game just like Uno with a few tweaks and modifications to make it work in Mrs. Ludwig's Speech Room.

My first version of the game targets the "sh" sound. You can download it for FREE from my Teachers Pay Teachers Store: Just give it a click! This is what it looks like: 

A full set of directions: 
Classic Uno Rules with a Speech Twist

"sh" cards for numbers 0 to 9 
come in 4 different colors

"Skip", "Reverse", and "Draw & Say 2" Cards 
come in every color

And WILD cards too!

I also made some additional add-on packs to incorporate different sounds when working with groups. Mix & match your DOS Decks to target lots of different sounds all within one session. You can buy some of the add-on packs for additional sounds in my TpT Store: Just give this a click.

Oh, that awful /r/...

I spy sp- & sk- blends:

Here's an example for the multi-target game:
  • Use the 0-5 cards from the /r/ pack.
  • Use the 6-9 cards of the s-blend pack.
  • Include all the same Wild, Skips, Draw & Say 2s.
  • Two targets in One big game.
Hey there, efficiency. 

A note on Target Selection:
I tried to choose mainly CVC words since there are no pictures on the cards. They will be easier for the little kids to sound out, which is good for spontaneous productions. Also good literacy practice for the first & second-graders! Bonus.

A quick note on Evidence-Based Practice: 
I love reading up on the new research in our field and incorporating the latest and greatest into my own therapy. I based my word selection off of my former professor's newest research article that considers Age of Acquisition (AoA) as a variable in treatment efficacy. 

Results: Later-acquired words were found to have better phonological generalization than early-acquired words. Also, the study provided more evidence that the late-8 sounds showed greater gains compared to middle-8 sounds. 

Targets were gathered from an AoA rating database (Kuperman et al. (in press)) and chosen based on an older age of acquisition. Cheers, to Evidence-Based Practice! 

Article citation: 
Gierut, J. A., & Morrisette, M. L. (2012). Age-of-word-acquisition effects in treatment of children with phonological delays. Applied Psycholinguistics, 33, 121-144. NIHMSID: 353839

Kuperman, V., Stadthagen-Gonzalez, H., & Brysbaert, M. (in press). Age-of-acquisition ratings for 30 thousand English words. Behavior Research Methods.

I hope you can find this useful in your speech rooms. Happy DOS-ing!!

Mrs. Ludwig


Saturday, November 10, 2012

A Few Resources

I wanted to throw down a post dedicated a few resources. Okay, here we go!

READING COMPREHENSION - it's amazing! Just create a log in and you can get access to tons of FREE informational text passages and suggested kid books that target specific skills. You can search for passages by lexile levels or by skill sets (e.g. cause & effect, fact/opinion, figurative language, vocabulary in context). All of them are aligned to the Common Core Standards.


VOCABULARY: The kids get to build vocabulary while donating rice to help feed the hungry. How motivating is that, right? The words get harder as you get more right and easier as your success rate plummets. I like to use it with the middle schoolers and high schoolers because you can choose to target academic vocabulary & SAT prep words. It looks like this:

I am blessed to have several iPads to use with my speech kids at school and have been collecting lots of apps to use in my speech room. Here's just a few I've enjoyed using:

Sentence Builder

The kids get to choose from a set of words to make grammatical sentences. There are 3 different levels and an option to turn on/off reinforcers. They kids think the dancing animals are pretty funny when they get the sentence correct!


A voice recording app. How I use it: To collect my language samples and responses during evaluations (e.g. the CELF-4 recalling sentences). I started off with the free version and eventually ran out of space so I upgraded to the full version. I use it all the time.

The standard camera. A few of many ways I use it:

1) To practice speech sounds. It's a great visual reinforcer to have the kids look at themselves while they produce the  target sound. (e.g. "Ohhhh, that /r/ looks like a /w/..." I stopped counting a long time ago how many times I've used that phrase.) 

2) Snapping pictures around the school for vocabulary practice with my lower language kids.

3) The video function as a "Let's pretend we're on TV and interview each other." Elicits questions and answers to wh- questions. Win, win.

Doodle Buddy

A free drawing pad for kids. A few ways I use it: 
Following directions activities (e.g. "Draw a square under a circle").  Hangman to target question syntax,
 "Is there a ____." & copula verbs, 
"No there IS not a ____." Arts-infused therapy!

And....CUT! The first of many posts dedicated to my iPad usage in the speech room.

I'm excited to announce I will be attending the ASHA Convention this week in Atlanta....yessss! I am SO excited to get some new ideas, resources, and CEUs. Check back later for ASHA updates!

Thanks for checking in! :)

~ Mrs. Ludwig

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

The Many Roads to the Treasure Box

Prizes and Candy. Prizes and Candy. Seems like all the kids ever want are prizes and candy.

My first year as an SLP I gave out a lot of candy...and I mean A LOT of candy. My husband, who happens to be a dentist, had to have an intervention in the aisle of Sam's Club to avoid buying another mega-pack of chocolate bars.

I've gone through a few different prize systems that looked a little like this:

First system: the kids all had Speech Passports. The Passports had pages inside where the kids got a stamp each day they attended speech. That worked well for little awhile. However, at times it became a hassle to find the ink, stamp their book, and send them on their way without being late for my next group.

Next, I switched over to dealing out Shine Tickets. The kids had to earn Shine Tickets throughout the month and during the last week of the month we had a raffle. More shine tickets = Better chance to win.  I'll admit the raffle was a little rigged to ensure every kid got a chance to "win"... :)

Then, we switched to a sticker chart. One big chart where they earned stickers all year long. 10 stickers = prize.

My new system is based on a punchcard. The kids have to earn 10 punches on their card to get a prize. It looks a little like this:

And they hang on the back of the door like this:

I introduced them with the multiple meaning word: punch. Many different kinds of punches! And the punches, or holes, are nice and hidden in those pockets, so they aren't distracting during our group time. So far so good!

And when prize day finally comes, here is my giant treasure box the kids get to pick out of. I keep it locked and we have to use the key to get inside. Here it is:

I spy only a little bit of candy...
Instead of prizes & candy, maybe some day they'll be asking for /r/ sounds and pronouns, /r/ sounds and pronouns. Ha, right...

Thanks for visiting!

~Mrs. Ludwig

Monday, November 5, 2012

Thanksgiving, here we come!

November is officially here! Phew, time is flying! Our school didn't get a fall break this year, so we are all anxiously awaiting our Thanksgiving break. Only a few more weeks to go!

As the temps have dropped in Indy and the Halloween candy is all on sale at the grocery story, I've found myself getting in the November mood. Time to start thinking about all the many million things we have to be thankful for. I'm always thankful that the holidays provide some extra inspiration for my therapy activities!

Here's a sneak peak at some of the activites we're using in Mrs. Ludwig's Speech Room. You can find them all in one big FREE pack in my Teachers Pay Teachers Store: Thanksgiving Speech & Language Pack

1) Preposition & Concept Memory Match. We play just like classic memory match but this time with a fun turkey teaching us important concepts!

2) We are also using this Thanksgiving scene for working on our sentences using is & are. It's also the Common Core Standard my first graders are targeting, so perfect timing to get some reinforcement. 

3) I also made some easy coloring sheets. The kids can color this cute turkey while taking turns practicing their sounds.

Here's a few my kiddos did at school. My 2nd graders are thankful for: 1) people that help the world & 2) gravity. Both solid choices.

4) Pronoun Sentences. The kids had to choose from the word bank to apply the appropriate he, she, they, him, her, it pronoun and write it on their worksheet.

5) I have a kiddo with Childhood Apraxia of Speech who is struggling with reading, especially the CCVC words. We have been working on segmenting those words, so I made some CCVC segementation cards with a visual to use with manipulatives.

Happy November and check back again soon! :)

~ Mrs. Ludwig