Turn Kids Into Story Champions
School speech-language pathologist Michelle Carlson shares how to make and use a "story champion chart" to teach narrative structure and storytelling to preschool and older children.
"What is a narrative? Narratives are basically stories. A child needs to know how to tell stories in order to be successful in school and make friends. Can you picture it? Children are always telling stories in the school setting. If a child is taking too long or their narrative doesn't make any sense, the other child is probably going to walk away bored. I ... adapted my own Story Champion Chart to use not only with preschoolers but also with K–third grade ... The kids love it, and they really do learn the main components of storytelling. It also translates into better writing, so the teachers love it too. There is a large symbol sheet for teaching, and a small symbol chart to use for printing and making the nifty little booklet. The symbols are 'character,' 'problem,' 'feeling,' 'action' and 'ending.'"
Try Some Speech Support
School SLP Ashley went from bystander to believer after testing an articulation instrument with one of her challenging /r/ clients.
"I first heard about Speech Buddies at the 2010 ASHA Convention. I thought it sounded like such a great idea, but could they really work? Well, after using Speech Buddies for several weeks, I believe they really do work! I used the /r/ Speech Buddy with a 7-year-old client who was not stimulable for /r/ before. His baseline data was 0 percent for /r/ in all positions. We used the /r/ probe throughout the first one-hour session. One week later, the client achieved 60 percent accuracy for producing /r/ in all positions of syllables while using the /r/ Speech Buddy probe. Some increase is expected in the early weeks of therapy. However, a 0 percent to 60 percent increase is greater than I would normally expect to see."
Pep Up Your Preposition Instruction
SLP Kim Rowe uses some classic children's stories, along with teddy bears and props, to engage the preschool set in learning their prepositions.
"How much fun is it to bring out those cuddly teddy bears and put them to work? We'll start with 'Inside, Outside, Upside Down' by Stan and Jan Berenstain ... In a nutshell, a bear climbs in a box, the box is turned upside down, taken outside, and loaded on a truck on its way to town. When the truck hits a bump, the box falls off, the bear comes out, and he runs home to tell his mom, 'Mama, mama. I went to town, inside, outside, upside down!'"
Horse Around With /r/ Positions
SLP blogger Kim Swon Lewis relates how she harnessed her experience as a parent of a budding equestrian to create an articulation game targeting /r/.
"I can't remember when my daughter didn't love horses. It seems like since she was old enough to speak she was begging for pony rides, begging for riding lessons, begging for a horse ... Earlier this November, she was in a very large and competitive show. She worked her butt off all fall in preparation and I spent a shocking number of hours waiting for her in the barn. As a result, I ended up creating 'Flies in the Barn,' a fun game to target /r/ in all positions of phrases/short sentences. (In case you were wondering, she placed first in her age group in both equestrian and pleasure!)."