Our store has a few new items I wanted to share with you. The first is a behavior chart. It has lots of speech bubbles. Because speech/language therapy doesn't really have a symbol, like books for librarian or apples for teachers, I'm on a one-woman crusade to make the speech bubble our symbol! Just kidding, but I do tend to use speech bubbles now and then. The behavior chart has two sizes of titles and an incentive chart that will last the school year, at least for our 36 instructional weeks in Texas, AND it's just 50 cents. Go check it out here.
                                         Source: teacherspayteachers.com via Laura on Pinteres
The next items are bulletin board ideas. It is so hard for me to find things just for speech/language therapy. These ideas are designed to go along with popular themes and to let SLPs have something specific. I could set up a camping theme using items from the teacher store AND have something just for speech therapy! Also, the bulletin boards can stay up all year - no switching out!

The sets also include large and medium sets, a print-out of notes "From Your Speech Pathologist" with the theme and a page of brag notes. Sets are $2.

The first theme is camping. Go here to see more.

                                                Source: teacherspayteachers.com via Amberly on Pinterest

The second theme is superheroes. Go here to see more.t

                                                     Source: teacherspayteachers.com via Laura on Pinterest

And one more item, Speech Bubbles for Vocabulary Development. This has graphic organizers, ready to print out and use for individual use or print out and laminate for group work. It can be used by anyone, but I like the speech bubbles, of course. It is $2.

                                                 Source: teacherspayteachers.com via Laura on Pinterest
Thanks for looking. If you like the bulletin board sets but they don't match your theme, let me know, and I will try to accommodate.

The Pin:
                                            Source: makeaheadmealsforbusymoms.com via Laura on Pinterest

Yes, I've made it before. But I didn't post a picture so I'm counting this as a do-over.

This is Cafe Rio Chicken from Make Ahead Meals for Busy Moms. I had previously posted that everyone liked it. We've been eating out a lot lately, so I decided to go to HEB and make a crock pot lunch while we attended the late services.

The Good: We still like it. I think sour cream would be a great topping.

The Bad: My chicken looks nothing like the picture. Here it is:
I would like to know how the chicken in the pin is so white when both cumin and chili powder are ingredients.

Summary: Still a keeper!

My wonderful cousin Lisa from The Glittery Apple has nominated me for two awards. It looks like most are teacher blogs, so I hope you don't mind me jumping on. I'm a speech therapist in the public schools, and I have been for 19 years, so I do have a connection.

So here are the awards:

For receiving One Lovely Blog award, I have to:
1. Follow the person who gave me the award - already doing!
2. Link back - see first sentence or here
3. Pass to 15 bloggers and let them know that they have received the award.

For receiving the Versatile Blogger award, I have to:
1. Thank the blogger who nominated me - done
2. Include a link to their blog - The Glittery Apple, one more time! Really, you should check out Lisa's blog.
3. Include the award image in my post - see above
4. Give 7 random facts about myself - see below
5. Nominate 15 other bloggers for the award
6. When nominating, include a link to the blog
7. Let other bloggers know they've been nominated

So, 7 random facts. I'm kind of boring.
1) My family makes fun of me because I think Gotye's song "Somebody That I Used to Know" is not grammatically correct - it should be "Somebody WHO I Used to Know" - and yes, I'm a nerd and looked it up and Somebody THAT is acceptable, but it still bugs me
2) I love planning trips to Disney World. My husband says even more than going. I've planned out a trip for my sister-in-law and extended family, and each day is about a typed page. I'm even planning a trip for October 2013, and Lisa is not cooperating very well! Something about still having time to make decisions...
3) I'm a latecomer to The Big Bang Theory. My teen-agers hooked me when they showed me a clip of Sheldon playing "Bazinga!" in the ball pit, and sometimes I watch the reruns if the evening news is too depressing.
4) I try to limit myself to one Diet Coke per day. Ideally, it's a 12 oz can, but sometimes it's a large Sonic. It was a bad day when I had a large Diet Coke at 6:45 a.m. That was a morning when we were trying to get my son's driver's license approved.
5) I cannot sleep with a blinking light on anywhere. Chargers are not in the bedroom, and heaven forbid if the clock or TV light starts blinking!
6) I love word games. Scramble with Friends is my favorite, Words with Friends is next, and Hanging with Friends is one I play just to keep friend connections. I think SLPs have an advantage with consonant blends.
7) Snoring yet? I lock the car doors even when the car is in the garage. It drives my husband crazy, but it's just a habit. I don't know where it came from.

Time to wake up! Here are the 15 blogs, and I'm going to follow Lisa's example and combine them.
1. Life in Room 406 - I love the chevrons!
2. 3rd Grade Troops - lots of teaching experience
3. Hoot for First Grade - looks cute
4. The First Grade Derby - another one I want to spend some more time exploring
5. Simpson's Superstars - because Simpson is my maiden name, and although I'm sure we're not related, it's a sign of a great blog
6. A Ray of Kindergarten Sunshine - new blog that looks good
7. Inside the Classroom - looks like a net focus on BOOKS!
8. Once Upon a Third Grade Class - will be interesting to read about looping
9. Spotted in First Grade - looks like detailed blog posts
10. Mrs. Kelly's Klass - a new blog
11. Leaping into First Grade - because elementary is my spot
12. The Friz in First Grade - a fellow Texan
13. Orange Triangle - looks like technology information, and I need that

Because I'm an SLP, the next two blog are, too.
14. Carrie's Speech Corner - great ideas
15. Speech Chic - another good resource

Whew! That's a LOT of great ideas to check out!

My husband Jim is a middle-school counselor. Now that I've shared the speech room, it's his turn.

He and J made this awesome marble desk from IKEA parts. The desk was inspired by the marble doors at Disney's Rock 'n' Roller Coaster.

 The marbles actually come up out of the slots.
There's also a light underneath. It is really cool! It looks like a high-tech OT toy to me - use fine-motor skills to pick up marbles to find the light.
 Larger picture view.

View upon entering. Happy counselor subject to change depending on day. Just kidding. Jim is a very positive person!

We have a few more things to do, but I think he's almost set!

I forgot to take a picture of the Let's Talk sign. It fit perfectly just across the top of the chalkboard. Emily and Amy hung it up with wire and then covered the wire with a brown bow. Just darling!

Thanks to my wonderful son J, my awesome sister Amy, my niece-by-heart Emily, my friend Sarah, and my super husband, Jim, the speech room is looking better!

By far, the most detailed and time-consuming part was covering the file cabinet drawers which came from this pin, #33 for the Summer of 60 pins.
The Pin:
                                                 Source: teachinginroom6.blogspot.com via Laura on Pinterest

My Version:
The first pin has contact paper, but I was a little nervous about covering school property with something that wouldn't come off, or least come off easily. Earlier in the summer, I bordered year.o.graphy and summer fresh 12 x 12 papers from Simple Stories with Mud Pie card stock from Bazzill. My friend Nancy selected the collections after I told her what I wanted, and I used Chip It! from Sherwin-Williams (Summer of 60 Pins #34).

The Pin:
                                          Source: letschipit.com via Laura on Pinterest

My Version: Chip It! is sooo easy to use. I just dragged a picture from year.o.graphy in and got this:

                                 Source: letschipit.com via Laura on Pinterest
Just taking off the hardware, waiting for the laminator to heat up, and putting everything back on took longer than I thought. But before I was through, J showed up to help. Well, he showed up because I told him I had lunch. It was Pioneer Woman's Chicken Spaghetti Casserole made with turkey in the crock pot, Summer of 60 Pins #35. I forgot to take a picture of it, but I'm sure it looked just like Pioneer Woman's.

The Pin:
                                  Source: thepioneerwoman.com via Laura on Pinterest

Here's a close-up. I still need to put on the labels.
Amy and Emily showed up around lunch with Sonic drinks.  I knew I had invited the right people. They got right to work, despite Amy not feeling well because she had reactions to her allergy shots.

Amy is an elementary-school librarian, so she organized my books on the bookshelf Jim repainted. It was originally in the kids' nursery and has been repainted a couple of times. Amy figured out I had units for body parts, dinosaurs, and the circus without even asking me. She put author books, alphabetized of course, on the top shelf, units on the middle shelf, and books from January-December on the bottom shelf.

Meanwhile, my friend Sarah and Jim showed up. Here are pictures from the afternoon.

My diplomas, CCCs and license above the desk along with a cute magnetic board with daisy and swirl magnets from Amy:
And isn't this cute? Amy took two buckets, tied them together with fabric and leopard-print ribbon, and hung them from a wreath hanger on the side of the chalkboard. She also brought me these darling speech bubble magnets that can be written on with dry-erase markers.

Here is Sarah cutting out letters for the mesh wreath. I used g/k, s/z, l, r, ch, sh, f/v, and th, common sounds I work on with students. I originally had phonetic letters, but no one understood them and thought they were gang symbols! So I caved in and did regular letters on the Cricut using the Plantin Schoolbook cartridge. Sarah is cutting them out.
 Emily is hot gluing them on.
Here they are! Except for the /k/, which dropped out of the pile and didn't get laminated. Amy wouldn't let me put it on.
Here are the speech word art and wreath from my cousin Lisa hanging up.
And I got my big file cabinet back in order. Yes, I know about all the cute labels and stuff, but my cabinet has doors, and I just want it to be functional for me. That means labeling and visibility.

The top-top has a picture of my childhood playhouse that my grandmother painted. Jim attached Velcro strips so it won't slide off/down/around. The top shelf has stamps, my styrofoam snowman, and a box of stickers that may not stay there. The next shelf has oral-motor, Jim's hammer (at home now), and a possum puppet in an awkward postion. J is almost 17, but he had fun today!
The next shelf has clear plastic drawers with labels, plastic spoons and plates, wax paper and baggies plus Super Duper game things that I'll probably move.
This shelf has my games. I don't display them in the open because I have a few students who think they should play these games every time. The spirals are all old lesson plans I have to store.
The bottom shelf has two milk crates of file folder and Treats games along with my laptop case I never use and Dottie Zimmermann books.
One last pin for the Summer of 60 Pins, #36. I liked how the Super Duper cards were in book binder rings at the display at TSHA, and I also liked this pin, so I combined them.

The Pin:
                                               Source: 1.bp.blogspot.com via Laura on Pinterest

My Version:
What's next? Fabric to cover the metal cabinet doors and to create a "bulletin board" for student incentive charts. Whew, I'm tired, and I KNOW everyone else is! Stay tuned!

The Backstory: I will skip the gory details and just say that I was not the first inhabitant of the speech room at my elementary. Which meant I inherited nail holes, wall smudges and just general build-up on the walls. Here's an example:

In May, when it seemed likely that I would stay at the same elementary - SLPs never know! - I started campaigning for a new paint job.

I justified - It's a tiny room, it won't take long!

I begged - Please, I only made two of the nail holes!

I went for the guilt trip - when the Sp. Ed. Director said she wanted SLPs to feel taken care of, I told her a new paint job would do it.

I asked for sympathy - my AP and principal both visited the room, and the AP even pulled in a maintenance man.

When the room wasn't painted after July 4th, I thought it was over. My principal asked me to have faith. I didn't.

So it was a huge surprise when I walked in to get some summer speech supplies one week later to find beautiful walls! I was just expecting holes to be patched and a fresh coat of white paint at the most.

The room now has 3 neutral walls and one red wall! Our school colors are red and white. It will go so great with all of the year.o-graphy stuff!

So I sent an apologetic yet gushing e-mail to my principal and director and baked a cake for the custodians and maintenance men.

This weekend, I read a post from Heather's Heart that talks about putting students first in the classroom, not decorating. It made me think about my room arrangement, which previously looked like:
Lots of putty-colored metallic storage, my desk in the lower left that you can't see but which kind of didn't set up the most welcoming of entrances, and the work table in the middle.

My awesome husband moved the furniture around yesterday, and I'm happier. The desk is now in the corner, and while it invades a little bit into the chalkboard space, it's not too bad. There is a metal cabinet at the entrance, but it's not as chunky as the desk. I hope I can do without the metal bookshelf in the corner, and I broke up the big cabinet and filing cabinets.

I'm a little embarrassed to show you this picture. My room is not at all finished, but I'm very excited! I unpacked most of my boxes. The stuff on the table is going up on Thursday. My goal is to have the table be the focus when entering. Just ignore all the other stuff and come back on Friday to see more!
Oh, wow that's pretty bad right now. But isn't the paint purty? And separating the furniture doesn't give such an industrial look.

Stay tuned!
I'm getting ready to do a little bit of speech therapy tomorrow. The students I'm working with are mostly very limited with oral communication and have diagnoses of more than speech therapy. But it makes me think about my students who struggle to learn language but still have oral communication. Don't we often think that if these students can say more than they are? They're not non-verbal, after all. Are we expecting too much to make them talk more? Not expecting enough and letting them slide with simple sentences and answers? Maybe we need to be somewhere in the middle.

I had two kindergarten groups this year that were very opposite. One had several students working mostly on speech sounds. Believe me, they had great oral language besides that! If I had asked them to retell me the story of the "The Three Little Pigs", this is probably what I would have gotten:

Student #1: The first pig built a house of straw and the wolf came and huffed and puffed.
Student #2: Yeah, and then the second pig used sticks, but the wolf blew that down.
Student #3: The third little pig used bricks and kept everyone safe.

Yes, they probably would have been difficult to understand, what with saying "pid" for "pig" and "taw" for "straw", but they would have connected to the previous sentence and been able to sequence with mostly correct grammar.

Contrast that with my kindergarten group working mostly on language. "Tell me about The Three Little Pigs" might have led to this answer: PIGS

Ever gotten that? I mean, it's a familiar story. Shouldn't the student tell us more? And a one-word utterance in response to "tell me" is not appropriate for a kindergartener. There could be a lot of things going on. But since I'm an SLP and this is my example, we're going to go with a language-disordered student.

Our natural next response is to think, "I've got to get this kid on the RtI Committee agenda!" Ok, maybe it's not, although you should definitely visit with your SLP. Usually, our next response is to quiz the student and offer a sentence: How many pigs? What did they do? Who blew the houses down? That's right, the three little pigs built houses and the wolf came.

And guess what? We have changed the original request to answering WH- questions instead of "tell me". Our poor little student who gave us one word for an answer and maybe one-word answers to the questions. How much language did we just throw at a student who can't process that much? Lots of questions and a whole sentence. That's overwhelming for a student talking in short utterances. That's where I usually get the glassy-eyed look.

Here is an alternative - add ONE word to the student's answer. It won't be where you want them to be, but it's a stepping stone. Here's an example:

Me: Tell me about "The Three Little Pigs".
Student: Pigs
Me: Three pigs
Student: Three pigs.
Me: Now, tell me about "The Three Little Pigs".
Student: Three pigs.

The general rule is that a student should use utterances equal to age. For example, a 1-year-old says one word: doggie. A two-year-old adds to that: doggie run. A kindergarten student should be at 5-6 words.

I'm not saying you shouldn't ask questions. I love WH- questions. It's a good way to assess if a student can answer questions about story elements. But if our goal is to extend what the student is saying, adding one word at a time is a good way to go.

The Pin: Here is one example of seasonal subway art now available in All Y'all Need:

                                                   Source: teacherspayteachers.com via Lisa on Pinterest
We also have spring, summer, and winter! Words are based on curriculum. Come take a look.

New items in our All Y'all Need Teachers pay Teachers store! These are easy checklists for speech/language. I cannot tell you how many times teachers see me in the hallway - with my mind on another task or with students - and say, "Hey, can you come listen to my student?" I know it's human nature to see someone and have a thought triggered, but I am often not going to remember the request, or even to write it down! These are packets that the SLP can print out at the beginning of the year for teachers or print out pages as needed. The checklists are easy for the teacher to fill out. Places to document concerns and discussions. $2. For PK-2nd grade.

Pre-Kg packet
                                                      Source: teacherspayteachers.com via Amy on Pinterest

Kg packet
                                     Source: teacherspayteachers.com via Amy on Pinterest

1st grade packet
                                                Source: teacherspayteachers.com via Amy on Pinteres

2nd grade packet

                                                       Source: teacherspayteachers.com via Amy on Pinterest
Thanks for taking a look!
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