Wednesday, November 28, 2012

O Christmas Tree App with Communication Board

Here's a free app that my kids like---O Christmas Tree by R2Integration.  There are several tree decorating apps out there---I liked this one because it's free, and the graphics are realistic.  The best part is that when you want to start over, you shake the iPad and all of the decorations plummet to the ground.  (The kids have loved that part the best, too!)

 Touch the ornament so that it shows up in the middle of the wreath on the left.  Then touch the tree wherever you want the ornaments.  It has cute sound effects too.  

I've made a simple communication/choice board to go with this.  The reason is so that the kids will tell me what they want before they start touching the iPad screen.  I want them to make some requests (verbal and non-verbal) and use some joint referencing skills.  The iPad is  the tool but the child and adult need to communicate. Augmenting the app with a board helps this process.  Have fun!!!!

Click here to download the communication board in Boardmaker.

Click here to download the communication board in pdf.


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Peace Corps!!!!

A while back, I wrote about my wonderful talented daughter, Andorra, and her application to the Peace Corps.  She has now received a formal invitation, and she'll be going to Indonesia!!!!  I'm so proud of her. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

Christmas for 10--printable icons for a nice book

Here's another nice counting book by the same author as Feast for 10---this one is entitled Christmas for 10 by Cathryn Falwell.  It has simple text, it features counting, it's centered around the same African American family, and has great Christmas-themed vocabulary.

I've made some simple icons paired with numbers to go with each page of the book.  I use this type of format in language groups, especially in EC classrooms.  As a group, and individually within the group, the kids practice counting, labeling, commenting, and answering questions.  They take turns, practice raising their hands to be called on, and share materials.  I then loan the book to the classroom teacher for her to use with the students again (repetition is good!).  She loves this because she has an instant lesson to do, and already has observed it being taught.  

The real question is 'why did I blog about the same type of book as Feast for 10?'
The answer is that my kids need to learn language in one activity, and then the language needs changed a only a little so they can learn a bit more in the next activity.  Offering two similar, but slightly different books allows them to expand on their existing language, yet, they don't have to go through a completely new language experience.  The kids in this class have read Feast for 10 twice--this Friday, they will listen to and read with me Christmas for 10.  I'm excited about it!

Click here for the book icons in Boardmaker

Click here for the book icons in pdf

Friday, November 23, 2012

The Lonely Reindeer and his Prepositions--printable

Thanksgiving is now officially over!   I feel blessed by all the good people who surround me, and I feel fortunate that I live in this era of networking and blogging.  This blog has enlarged my world so much, and I've come to know some incredible professionals and parents.  Thank you all for your nice comments and feedback.

Title page
I made another preposition themed book to share---kids need vocabulary presented in multiple ways, and repetition.  If you are familiar with my work, this book (The Lonely Reindeer Flying Over and Between) is very similar to an Angry Birds book I put up a while back.  This one has a bit of a Christmas theme to it----sorry if you don't celebrate this.  (If you want a different theme, send some suggestions, and I can see what I can do!)

Scroll down to find the links to download.

book icons---cut these out, the blue ones are the sentence strip

screen shot of a sample page

Happy Ending screenshot

 Click here to download the book in pdf

Click here to download the book in Boardmaker

what this looks like in Boardmaker--all the pages
   Time is flying by!     I've just been told I'm going to be a grandmother so I'm celebrating!


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A Stop Motion Thanksgiving!!!

Happy Thanksgiving to all of my blogging friends!    I'm off to visit with my wonderful inlaws in Brevard NC tomorrow.

This video, by the way, illustrates a nice step-by-step set of directions for making a real pumpkin pie!  It's stop motion filming is very engaging for all viewers, and it's set to some great music.  Let the kidos watch it and then retell!    Then after the retell, they can write and illustrate a 'how to' book (from our school writing curriculum--it's amazing to me how many kids seem to be at a loss when it comes to this task.)

If you are permitted to cook with the kids (we're not), make an easier version of a pumpkin pie (open a box and cook) and then have them compare what they did with what this video shows.

OR, just don't think about speech therapy for a few days, and make a pumpkin pie of your own!  Have a nice holiday!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Tutorial--simple method for disabling the iPad home button

This is a common complaint---your child needs to be using either an educational app, or a communication app---the minute your back is turned, the child has closed the non-preferred app and is playing Angry Birds.  

It's now time for all of us to celebrate!  If you upgrade your device to iOS 6, it's extremely easy to disable the home key.  I learned all about this from Eric Sailers, a renowned techie SLP, at ASHA, and feel the need to pass it forward!   This is a major iPad breakthrough for me and my students!

Here's a quick tutorial:

1. Locate the settings icon on your home screen.

2.  Once you have selected Settings, scroll down on the left to 'general', and then select 'Accessibility' on the right. 

3.  Once you open 'accessibility', then select 'guided access'.

4.  Once you select 'guided access', slide this to 'on'.

5. Once you have set Guided Access to 'on', you need to set a passcode.  Make sure you remember the passcode.  In my case, I set it to my birth year.
(I'm sure that number is lower than your birth year!)  

6.  Now it's time for you to touch the 'home key' and get out of settings.  Then open up the app you would like a child to use for a bit.  In this case, I've opened Proloquo2Go.  I don't want the child to leave this to play a game, so the next step is to push the 'home button' three times.

7.  After you push the home button three times, this popup will come up---touch the top button "Guided Access".  

8.  After you touch 'guided access', the app screen will contract a bit, and a new button will show up in the top right corner.  It says 'start'.  Push that!

9.  Your ipad will then read 'guided access started' and your app will show up normally.  The home button will not work!   Yeah!

10.  When you, as the adult in charge, have decided it's time to change apps, depress the home button three times.  The Passcode popup will come up.  (I hope you remember your passcode!)  Type that number in.

11.  After you have typed in your passcode, your ipad app screen will shrink a bit, and the word 'end' will appear in the upper left corner.  Touch that, and your iPad is back to what it was. 

I'm so grateful to Eric Sailers for taking the time to teach this at ASHA!    This feaure, however, will only work with iOS 6, and will never work with the 1st generation of iPads.  You need an iPad 2 or iPad 3--and this should be a motivation for you to upgrade to iOS 6 if you haven't already done so. 

Look for more tutorials on iPad accessibility!  ASHA was great---it rejuvenates me every time!



Saturday, November 17, 2012

Goodbye ASHA!!!

I've hung on at ASHA until the very end----the end was a fun party put on by ASHA at the Georgia Aquarium (for you non speech pathologists out there, ASHA is the American Speech and Language Association).   Our big national convention was in Atlanta this year.   Often, I leave conventions and workshops a little early---this year, I dragged David along to the party finale (I love the Georgia aquarium!).

I'm putting up these random pictures of the fun I've had today.  I actually learned quite a bit at all the seminars, which I'll put into practice and write about later.  For now, it's Good-bye ASHA!

Earlier in the day, after a couple of seminars, we took a hike up Stone Mountain.  Atlanta is in the distance.   Great exercise, by the way.

Confederate Memorial

 Closing party was at the Georgia Aquarium!
Pretty cool!

After I get back home, I'll return to posting speech/language materials, and applying and posting what I learned at this convention.  For now, all of you SLPs out there----ASHA is in Chicago next year!  Try to go if you can! 


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

ASHA Unconventional---the day before

Luxurious digs through AirBnB--more similar to a hostel
 For those of you who are not speech pathologists, let me explain.  I'm going to attend a convention tomorrow--the American Speech and Language Association national convention in Atlanta.  To make it a family adventure, my husband came along (he has no interest in ASHA though).  Today was the pre-ASHA fun day for me.  I'll just post the pictures here--you read the captions and notes--you'll see that sometimes, we like more of the unconventional.

Day care center with actual bars--we walk by this to get to MARTA

3 stops to the convention

Took in some geocaching.  This guy wanted to know what we were doing.

 What would a Morgan trip be without geocaching? Look at the photo above and you'll see that not everyone knows it's simply a high tech treasure hunt with a GPS.  The Andrew Young statue has a geocache hidden under his shoe---tricky to find!

I needed to pick up my packet of stuff for ASHA--beating the long lines that will be there tomorrow.  Over 10,000 of us are converging on the convention center!

We visited the Martin Luther King National Historic Site.  Everyone needs to go there.
This cart carried his casket

MLK birth home

 We walked around historic Oakland Cemetery for a bit (geocaching).  Notice the name of the restaurant/bar in the background.

Underground Atlanta

Tomorrow, I'll be sitting in seminars.  Today, I feel like I got a taste of the real Atlanta.  I love where our room is---in a house, in a neighborhood, literally on the other side of the tracks.  I'll keep you posted on how the next few days go!


Monday, November 12, 2012

Where are the cats? Printable book with icons

Hello everyone!

 I'm sitting in Brevard right now--preparing for the next leg of my pilgrimage to the ASHA convention.

Prior to the convention, though, I wanted to post about a new simple book I made on Tarheel Reader, and also have uploaded to Google Drive.  I was very motivated to make this, even while on my trip--- I work with a cute little guy in his home who really, really likes cats and needs customized books.  The last couple of times I saw him, we read "What can Dogs do?"  and "What can Cats Do?"   I brought my twins' old Beanie Babies from home, and we acted out the pictures.  He used more language that day, and answered more questions than any time I've been with him!   The pictures from Tarheel reader are large and clear---for a boy with CVI, they worked!

screen shot of title

To continue the momentum, I've now created "Where are the Cats?" on Tarheel Reader.  You can look at it there, or you can download the book from my Google drive account.  The link is at the bottom of this posting.

screen shot
Targets in language therapy are to elicit a simple patterned sentence, comprehend and elicit prepositions--in, on under; and, now that I'm looking more closely at my pictures, this is good for regular plurals, too!  Bring in stuffed cats and act it all out with the kids!  They'll love it.  I think my student will!   

screen shot

last page

Click here to download Where are the Cats?

Click here for the icons in Boardmaker

Click here for the icons in pdf