Wednesday, January 16, 2013

More Low Cost Therapy Materials

Did you check out the Guest Post by Teach Speech 365 on Low Cost Therapy Materials?  I promised I'd share some of my own favorite low cost therapy materials/ideas.  Here they are:



This is probably a favorite of all of the kids I have seen for therapy!  I have a bunch of small flashlights I've found at a nearby odd-lot type of store.  To play, simply hide articulation or language cards around your room, give the students a flashlight and have them search for the cards!  They keep the cards that they find and complete and the student with the most is the winner.


I have 3 or 4 child-sized hula hoops that I found one summer for about $2 each at a CVS pharmacy!  Here are some things I do with them.

1.  I lay 2 of them on the floor for sorting activities (e.g., farm animals vs. zoo animals):

2.  You can use them for Venn Diagrams as well for older students.  The last time I did a sorting activity (farm animals vs. pets), I had a few kids decide that a cat could be a farm animal or a pet:

We actually used the hoops this week!  We read "The Jacket I Wear in the Snow" and sorted clothing into clothes you wear in the snow and clothes you do NOT wear in the snow.

3.  Have students take turns tossing articulation cards (or tokens) into the hoop.  They must say a word to take a turn.  Students can earn points by landing in the center of the hoop.  The student with the most points is the winner.  If you have different sized hoops, you can make different point areas.

Jumping Frogs

For my preschoolers, when the teachers are doing a pond/frog theme (usually in the spring), we use these jumping frogs:

(Amazon Link)

I cut out shapes of various colors and place them in the center of the blue hula-hoop (lily pads in a pond). I have the students make the frogs jump into the pond and use a sentence to describe where it landed ("He landed on a purple square").  You could do this activity with articulation or language cards as well - when the frog lands on a card, the student says the word (artic cards) or completes activity (language cards).


Another versatile (and inexpensive) staple!  Some examples of how I use stickers in therapy:

1.  Barrier Games.  If you have two of the same sticker sheets, hand one to each player/team along with a blank sheet of paper.  For more information on how to play barrier games, click HERE.  

2.  Following Directions.  This can range from simple "Find a smiley face sticker," to more complex "Get a heart shaped sticker and put it on your left hand."  In the past, I've cut out stickers and hidden them (one at a time) under cards from a Memory Game while the kids aren't looking.  When they open their eyes, they can ask me yes/no questions to figure out where the sticker is (e.g., "Is it under a fruit?").  The student who finds the sticker gets to keep it. 

3.  Making a Sticker Train.  I used this activity with a social language group and it was a HUGE hit!  I found this worksheet from Super Duper's Artic Quickies:

The worksheet is designed for final /k/.  I put post-it notes over the pictures so I could have a blank template.  Then I cut out the engine and cars from several copies.  I took a sheet of construction paper, cut it in half (the long way) and taped end-to-end for a long strip of paper.  I told the kids they were each going to make a train, but that they had to work together.  I had them discuss and plan how many cars would fit on the paper and where the engine should go.  Once we glued down the train parts, we discussed whether they should color the cars and/or draw details (e.g., "Let's draw 3 puffs of steam").  You're probably wondering where the stickers come in, right?  Well, I typically use character stickers for this part (Dora, Hello Kitty, Spongebob, Elmo, Diego, Mickey Mouse, etc), but sometimes I add in various all depends on what I have on hand.  I give 3 sticker sheets to each student.  If one child wants a particular character, they have to ask the person who has the sticker sheet.  This probably doesn't sound like a stellar activity, but I got a TON of language out of it and the kids really liked the activity as well!  Here's a completed train:

That's it for now!

Tell me, what are some of your favorite low or no-cost therapy activities?

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