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That's Absurd! - FREEBIE ALERT

Hello Speechies!

Do you ever work on absurdities? My caseload this year is primarily students with ASD and related disorders and we are constantly working on describing pictures. One thing my students struggle with is stating "What is wrong?" in a picture. I found some REALLY cute clip art from Krista Walden Creative Clips on Teachers Pay Teachers and made a quick FREEBIE to use this week with my students. I wanted to share it with you in case you are working on the same skill! 
With this download, you will receive 18 colorful task cards with picture scenes and sentences embedded with an absurdity. Ask your students open ended questions instead of yes/no questions to avoid a getting a simple response. I typically ask a what or why question first. Then, once the student responds with an answer, I probe for more questions. Additional questions to ask:
Why is this silly?
What would you typically see at/in the _____?
Where would you find a _____?
These questions further your students comprehension of the picture and the scenario. All the while, you can target syntax, morphology, pragmatics, and semantics. 
I hope you enjoy this FREEBIE!
CLICK HERE to download.
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Cyber Monday Sale!!! - Linky Party

Hey friends!! 
TpT is having an AMAZING sale this Monday and Tuesday, November 28th and 29th! Save up to 28% by entering in the promo code: CYBER2016 at checkout. 

Here are a few items in my cart you should check out...

Social Stories from Speech Me Maybe

Winter Speech and Language MEGA Bundle from Short and Sweet Speech

No Print Investigating Tier 2 Vocabulary from The Speech Owl

On the Ranch Articulation Practice from Talkin' With Twang

Happy shopping, friends!

Check out the linky party on Short and Sweet Speech's blog HERE!

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TpT Cyber Sale and a FREEBIE!!!

Hello friends!

I hope everyone had an enjoyable Thanksgiving holiday. As we head into December, things at school can get crazy with the holidays so I wanted to share a fun FREEBIE to put a smile on your face. I've created these fun holiday gift tags that hopefully will get a laugh or two out of your family and friends. CLICK HERE to get these tags for free.

I printed mine on red, green, and white card stock and hole punched them at the top. Tie with ribbon or string onto the present for a unique tag!

Also, Teachers Pay Teachers is having an amazing Cyber Sale on November 28th and 29th. My entire store will be 20% off but...you can save up to 28% when you use the promo code: CYBER2016

Don't forget to type in that promo code at checkout...it is no fun when you forget (not that I've forgotten before... ;)

Happy Holidays!!!
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5 Reasons Smarty Symbols is a Must Have for School SLPs

As school based SLPs, we know that our students highly benefit from visual aids. That increases ten fold if you work with individuals with autism spectrum disorder or English language learners. Subscriptions to well-known image libraries can be pricey and unreachable. Also, if you enjoy making products on Teachers Pay Teachers, you are prohibited by copyright of selling these items. That is why I LOVE Smarty Symbols.

1) Smarty Symbols is a wonderful tool that I use every single day. I can’t say that for most of my therapy tools. You have access to over 20000 images and more are being added daily. These images are clear, detailed, and print off wonderfully.
2) In addition to their vast library of images, I must add that their website is beyond easy to navigate. Just search the word and a variety of images appear. You won't ever spend too much time searching for just the right image.
3) You can search and create your own pages off of their templates that are already created. Need a 1st grade MLU activity? Search it easily by clicking on 1st grade, speech therapy. It is so simple and quick…completely necessary with our busy schedules.
4) With the personal subscription, it is perfect for developing low tech AAC for students that need to start with PECS or a core board. I can't tell you how many times I have made a PECS book, a core board, or visuals for paraprofessionals to put on a lanyard.
5) With the commercial license, you can create your own therapy materials and then turn around and sell them on TpT! A no-brainer if you’re already creating or making your own materials.

Check out these products that I have made with Smarty Symbols images…and these are just a few!

Interactive Adapted Social Story Books

FREE Speech Schedule

File Folder Games

Who, What, When, Where Interactive Books

I love Smarty Symbols so much that I want to give away a FREE subscription! Comment below on how you would use a subscription and describe the caseload that you serve. I would love to hear from you! Don't forget to leave your email address so I can contact you if you are the winner. Winner will be chosen next Wednesday, November 16th at 3pm, Central Time. Good luck!

P.S. If you want to be notified of more giveaways and exclusive FREEBIES, subscribe to my blog!
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1,000 Followers...A Mini-Milestone

1,000 Followers….FINALLY!

I am beyond excited that my little TpT shop has reached 1,000 followers! I’ve worked very hard to get here and am so thankful for Teachers Pay Teachers. It has been such a huge blessing in my life. To celebrate, I wanted to giveback in some way so…why not host a giveaway?

Follow these steps to win a $20 Starbucks gift card, a $20 TpT gift card or a $30 credit to my shop! There will be THREE winners so your chances are good!! ☺

1) Like this post and tag a friend or two ;)
2) Follow me on TpT if you are not already
3) Like my page on Facebook
4) Leave feedback on a product from my store (It can be a FREEBIE)
5) Sign up on my blog, www.speechmemaybe.com, to get therapy ideas and access to exclusive freebies☺

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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OUTLOUD Timer 2 {App Review}

I am always looking for new ways to motivate the students on my caseload. One thing that I do with EVERY student is I use a timer for breaks. Almost every kiddo works off a token economy that leads to a one or two minute break. And as a side note, I find that the students are more attentive and cooperative if they have some input on how long their break should be. So, if you ask, “Do you want a one minute or two minute break?” they feel that they have some power over the situation.

I got to use the Outloud Timer 2 with my students in a one on one setting and it was a hit! Unlike the traditional digital timer, this timer provided some auditory and visual reinforcement. Here is how it works…
The home screen will pop up with two options: seconds or minutes. I really like this feature because it is easily customizable to what you’re doing.

Once you select how much time you want it takes you to the next screen. This is probably my favorite part of the app. Your student can draw the path that the penguin will follow. It can be curvy, straight, or even spell a word. It’s a really cool feature!

Once you draw the path, the countdown begins. During this time, the penguin follows the path all the way to the tent. You can see the countdown in the bottom right corner, which my students absolutely need so I’m glad that is a feature. Something else that I like about it is that you can pause the timer just by clicking on the screen.

Finally, once the penguin reaches the tent and the time is up, you will hear an applause and stars appear on the screen.

Not only did my kids enjoy the stars but also it changed their perception of their break ending from a not-so-positive thing to “Hey! That’s cool,” perspective.

Pros to this app:
1)It’s a new, “fun” way to take a break. My students enjoyed drawing the path for the penguin to follow.
2)Provides visual and auditory feedback.
3)Students seemed less made when their break time was over as they walked back to the table to see the penguin reach the tent.
4)Easily accessible and quick…no more work than setting the timer on your phone.
5)Ease of use. It took me a total of 2 minutes to figure out all of the features.

Cons to this app:
1)Limited to one scene. Meaning its two screens and that’s all. So, while that makes it easy to use, there isn’t much to it besides a pirate penguin walking to a tent and the same background image! Even though he is cute. ☺

The developers of this app are giving 3 away here. Just comment below on how you would use this in your therapy room.

Please note that this app review was provided for Outloud. All opinions are mine.

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Using the Expanding Expression Tool in Speech Therapy

The Expanding Expression Tool (EET) is an amazing resource created by Sara L Smith. You can find the kit here, but I just wanted to relay how it is being used in my speech room.

Our kiddos with expressive language disorders have a very difficult time expressing common vocabulary, retelling events, and much more. The EET provides a multi-sensory approach for oral and written expressions, defining and describing, vocabulary comprehension, and so much more. Not only do I use the EET for building vocabulary by breaking each part down, I also use it for story retell. The possibilities of this tool are endless and I have seen great success with my students!

Vocabulary Building

Green - Group
Blue - Do
Eye - Looks like
Brown - Made of
Pink - Parts
Orange - What else do you know?

We keep a DIY visual aid on our wall for quick reference. We used velcro to attach them to the wall and grab when targeting a specific area. When first introducing EET, you will want to teach one "bead" at a time. Especially if you are servicing a higher needs caseload. My students needed help defining the green bead or, what a "group" was so we completed some receptive sorting activities with pictures to determine what a "category" or "group" was. Then, we moved on to the blue bead - the function or "do" bead. If you have ELL students, this is a very difficult skill. I typically teach the function of objects using visual aids. Once your students have mastered the group and function, you will then move on to teaching the eye bead - or what does the object look like. For those students that have a difficult time visualizing objects, provide visual aids for a better understanding and slowly fade them out. Next you will talk about the wood or brown bead - this bead is for explaining what the object is made of or how it feels. The pink bead will elicit different parts of the object, i.e. tree-branches/leaves/bark/roots/etc...The white bead is to probe the location or where its from/belongs. Lastly, the orange bead is to add more information and talk about what else you know about the object.

Story Retell

Green - What group is involved?
Blue - What did they do? or What did you do?
Eye - Describe the visual details
Brown - How "wood" they feel? How "wood" you feel?
Pink - Describe and sequence important parts of the story.
Orange - Is there anything else to add?

To elaborate on this, my older students have such a hard time retelling stories that their peers (and myself) loose interest or get lost with their scattered story telling. Using the EET allows for a clear, sequenced story line with characters, details, and events. First, they start with telling who is involved with the green bead. Then, they elaborate on what happened or what the characters did in the story for the blue bead. Usually this part is brief as the details happen during the pink bead. Next, they paint a vivid picture in their listeners mind using the white eye bead. They can add an illustration or describe the setting in more detail. Then, they discuss the feelings of themselves or the characters in the story at the brown bead. Then, they add sufficient details with the pink bead. The white bead can be used to reflect on the story thus far, did they give adequate detail, etc. The orange bead can be used to summarize the story or event, add a resolution or ending, and reflect on what happened. Maybe target some higher level thinking i.e., What would you do in this situation? How would something like this make you feel? Included a moral to the story.

The EET can be used in soo many ways! Do you use the EET? How do you incorporate it into therapy?

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Pencil Categories - A FREEBIE!!

Happy Sunday!!

September in this house is a GOOD month. Football starts and I get a full day of peaceful, product making! I have many kiddos working on vocabulary and I am SO tired of hearing stories with "You know, the THING, and that THING I had, and all the THINGS." So, in an effort to build those semantics...I found these cute paint chip pencils from Creative Clips and turned it into a fun vocabulary activity!

This resource is FREE. Just got to my TpT store and download. Instructions on different ways to play are included! I hope you enjoy it!!

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5 Ways to Use Dry Erase Dice!

The Dollar Tree has these AMAZING dry erase dice for...you guessed it...A DOLLAR! The possibilities of these are truly endless. I want to share some ideas with you on how I use them in therapy.

1) Articulation Dice - Using two dice, write target sounds/words on each side of the first die and on the second die, write numbers 1 through 6. Have your students roll both dice. Then, they can produce the target sound for number rolled on the other die.

2) Answering Questions Dice- Using a fine point dry erase marker, write WH questions on each side of the die. These can be used for ice-breakers, answering questions about a story, or general WH questions. 

3) Verb Dice - Write regular or irregular verbs on the dice. Roll the die and have your student produce the past tense form of the verb and use it in a sentence.

4) Vocabulary Dice - Target homophones, antonyms, synonyms, categories, etc. Write a grade level vocabulary word on each side of the die. Roll the die and ask your student to produce the target vocabulary concept.

5) Sentence Building Dice- Using two dice, write a subject (noun, pronoun, etc.) on each side of the first die and on the second die, write an action verb. Have your students roll both dice. Then, they can form a grammatically correct sentence with dice. 

What are some creative ways you can use or have used these dice in therapy? I'd love to hear!

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Informal Assessment for Individuals with Autism

I don't know about you, but giving standardized tests to some of my kiddos isn't the end all - be all measure. And it definitely doesn't paint a true picture of all the abilities and strengths of the child. When initially meeting a family, I always like to give a case history/interview form as well as a functional communication checklist to the parents. Typically, I grab the CELF pragmatic profile with some random case history form that I found on google. I was never satisfied with the information I had gathered when I sat down to write the report and IEP.

For those very reasons, I tried to create an assessment that would give me enough information to feel comfortable about a students true receptive and expressive language ability. This is my newest product on TpT: Informal Assessment for Individuals with Autism: Lower level. 

This is the expressive language portion with the stimulus book and scoring assessment. In both the receptive and expressive stimuli books, I used real pictures and limited language. 

These are the checklists included in the resource. You can score each task with a 0, .5, and 1. This gives you more information when writing goals. Check it out on my TpT Store: Speech Me Maybe and let me know what you think! 
P.S. Higher level version is coming soon!!! :)

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Teachers Pay Teachers is having a back to school bonus sale for today, August 22nd ONLY!! Check out some of my latest and greatest to help start your school year off right!


 Don't forget to enter code: ONEDAY at checkout to receive an EXTRA 10% off!!

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Back To School: Progress Monitoring Tools

The beginning of the school year is the perfect time to get good baseline data on your caseload. Of course only after you break the ice and get to know each other! This progress monitoring tool can give you great baseline data on the following speech and language areas...

Articulation: Phonemes: /k, g, t, d, f, v, s, z, sh, ch, voiced th, voiceless th, l, l-blends, r, r-blends.
Antonyms, Synonyms, and Homophones
Context Clues
Basic Concepts
WH questions
Following Directions
Irregular Verbs
Irregular Plural Nouns

This product also comes with 30 IEP goals for the following areas: Articulations, semantics, syntax/morphology, pragmatics, fluency, and voice. Have confidence in your systems of developing goals from accurate data with this tool!

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Interactive Notebook for Social Groups

I do a lot of social groups with high functioning students. I'm always struggling to encourage participation and I think I've finally figured it out..an interactive notebook to go along with the lessons!! This resource is designed to be used with children with social communication skills difficulties, higher functioning individuals with autism, or social-emotional learning challenges. It can be used with a variety of client groups but specifically targets middle school to high school age groups. 

It is meant to aid therapists and/or teachers that run social groups in a more fun, engaging way with the use of an interactive notebook. This resource includes 13 mini-lesson plans and gives ideas and examples while teaching higher functioning language concepts. However, it is not all-inclusive as it is meant supplement your social group curriculum. Therapists and teachers are encouraged to add worksheets and/or change the order of lesson plans presented. 

Topics included are…
Lesson 1: Self-Assessment
Lesson 2: “About Me” Interview
Lesson 3: Strengths and Needs
Lesson 4: Personal Goal
Lesson 5: How to Self-Monitor
Lesson 6: Behavior Tool Box
Lesson 7: Expected vs. Unexpected
Lesson 8: Behavior Strategies
Lesson 9: Flexible Thinking
Lesson 10: Social Thinking
Lesson 11: Body Language
Lesson 12: People Files
Lesson 13: Having Conversations

There are so many interactive pieces...surely to keep the students engaged!

Self-monitoring forms!

Check this resource out here for 28% off Aug 1-2 ONLY!!

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Matching Non-Identical Pictures - An ABA Technique

Have you noticed a trend? I found some GREAT real photographs and have incorporated them into my new TpT materials. If you read my earlier post, you would know that I started working for a different company where my primary population is individuals with Autism. Using real photographs is a MUST.

Matching non-identical photographs may be more of an ABA technique, but it teaches some really important language skills such as:

Concepts Same & Different
Picture Matching

You can either use these as a file folder activity (perfect for independent center work)...


You can use them as flash cards...

Either way, I hope you enjoy them! You can find the full product HERE!

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Photo Language Prompts

Photo language cards are my saving grace when I'm working with individuals with significant language needs. They provide real pictures (unlike clip art) that children really respond and attend to. Most of the students on my caseload do not attend to clip art or line drawings yet and real photographs are hard to find!

That is why I have created 30 photo cards with language prompts. Each card has a story prompt on the front and a question prompt sheet is provided. You can specifically target these four areas:

1) WH Questions
2) Inferences
3) Verbs
4) Prediction

These cards also give students the opportunity to develop their own story about what is happening. All the while, targeting story retell, increasing MLU, verbs, and much more!!

Take a look at where you can find this new product HERE.
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Mystery Boxes - DIY Language Activity

As some of you know, I presented at the AZ SLP Boot Camp along with some great SLPs, Anne, Lisa, Sarah, and Laurel. As part of our conference, we set up centers where we made a "Make and Take" speech or language activity. At my center, we created a Mystery Box. This box can be used as a describing activity or a sensory activity. It's similar to the concept of "Ned's Head" however it cost UNDER $3. You'll need a paper box (or you can use an empty Kleenex box), scissors, foam paper, a stapler, and a variety of small items. Here's how you can make one.

Step 1:
Grab your box.

Step 2:
Cut off the lid or flaps.

Step 3:
Fold and cut foam paper making an X shape.

Step 4:
Staple foam paper onto box creating a lid.

Step 5: Gather items of different size, shape, and texture and put inside the box.

Viola! You're done! 

A funny story about these make and takes...
So, I bought enough materials to make 90+ make and takes for the conference. I bring the materials home, and frantically explain how nervous I am about the activity to my husband. I explain to him that I have to take the stickers off, the steps of making them, and how I hope everyone enjoys the activity, etc. The idea was that SLPs would actually MAKE these boxes at the conference and TAKE them home. The next morning (the day of the conference) I wake up to this...

My husband stayed up late making all of these boxes for me because he thought I had to make them and take them to the conference!!! All I could do is laugh (and frantically think about how I was going to make this work). Luckily, it worked out great at the conference because people were able to grab a pre-made box and talk about ways to use it in therapy rather than spend time cutting and stapling. So, if you grabbed a ready made box at the conference, thank my sweet, sweet hubby!! :)
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New Job...New Materials!

As some of you might know, I was presented with an amazing opportunity to grow my career with a new position at an AMAZING company. You know the best things fall into your lap when you stop searching…or at least that is how many great things start for me. I was happy with my current job, working in a school district at ONE school with a completely manageable caseload. However, I’m not one to be content and I love a challenge so…here I am.

This year I will be supervising and overseeing two SLPAs, having a caseload of my own, and working with a whole new group of people! The population this company serves is primarily individuals with ASD. Given that I have always had a mixed caseload from mild-profound disabilities, I am now focused on making new products to fit my current population.

Which means new products and FREEBIES for you!!
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Guest Blogger Post!

I am thrilled to be a part of Nicole Allison's guest blog post series, "Stepping Out Beyond Our Four Walls." Check out how I like to make connections and become part of the school community. 

Enjoy the rest of your summer!
-Speech Me Maybe
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Local AZ SLPs/Dog Lovers!!

Phoenix, AZ - A Dogs World

As you probably already know, I am obsessed with my fur-baby, Phoenix. Before you poke fun – we did not name our dog after the city we live in, we actually lived in Nashville, TN when we got her and coincidentally moved to the Phoenix area about a 1 ½ years later. We joke and say we will name our next one, Nash. We are in love with Arizona and all of the outdoor activities it has to offer. Here is a brief summary of our favorite dog friendly places we take her. 

Good Eats

O.S.H.O. Distillery
15681 N Hayden Rd #112, Scottsdale, AZ 85260

This is such a fun restaurant that LOVES dogs. Here you can see that Phoenix joined us at the table and she agrees that the food and drinks are delicious. When the server brings my dog water before me, I know I’m at the right place. They brew and serve all local beers and will let you taste test them, too! My favorite is the peach beer!!

5144 N Central Ave, Phoenix, AZ 85012

Postino’s is a trendy wine and brunch place that is also dog friendly. They have a great patio and atmosphere for 20-30 something’s.

Snooze an AM Eatery
2045 E Camelback Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85016
615 S College Ave #103, Tempe, AZ 85281

This place is so delicious. There are multiple locations to try out depending what area of Phoenix you are in. My suggestion is go on an early morning hike and stop for breakfast at this place. You won’t regret it.

Dog Friendly Hiking Trails

Phoenix has endless hiking trails to try out but not all of them allow pets to join you. A few of my favorite hiking trails are…

Brown’s Ranch Trailhead
30301 Alma School Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85262

I like this trail for a couple reasons. You can stay on the flat, level surface or you can opt for the more strenuous mountain hike. This hike offers beautiful scenery and it’s almost a guarantee you will see people riding horseback and passing you on the trail. Watch out for bikers as they enjoy the flat trail, too!

Gateway Trailhead
18333 N. Thompson Peak Rd, Scottsdale, AZ, 85255

I always take visitors to Gateway to hike when they come into town. It offers a variety of hikes from easy to difficult and is probably one of the most popular hikes in the city. It is very scenic and Phoenix enjoys the rough terrain and loves seeing fellow pups!

If you’re ever visiting the Phoenix or Scottsdale area and you are a dog lover, like me, try out some of these spots! Let me know what you think!!
And if you're in either of these areas and can't bring your pup along with you for any reason, try Rover.com for Phoenix or Scottsdale dog boarding. It'll be fun for your dog and will give you a piece of mind knowing they're not home alone!

Take care!!
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