Monday, June 23, 2014

Fireworks Everywhere! Printable book

Fireworks Arcade app
This is a repost from last year.  I have loved my "Fireworks Everywhere" book, and kids seem to like to too.  I pair it with a fireworks app (free) found HERE. Image from the app is to the right. It's a simple cause and effect app complete with shooting fireworks and sound effects.

After reading my book, check out the Very Lonely Firefly by Eric Carle.
 There are fireworks in that book too! 

-------------------------(blog entry from last year is below) --------------------

I'm been a little slow with blogging lately, but ESY started this week and so I'm back to making materials.  I'm finding most of my kids this summer need simple, so I made a simple book, which follows the pattern of my other books.  Pictures and links below. 

I print out these books, laminate, and use velcro so the kids can match the pictures.  There's also a sentence strip so kids that are able will read the sentence for each page.  

After the book reading, a fourth of July craft is appropriate.  Check the PediaStaff Pinterest board!  Oodles of activities!

Click here to download Fireworks Everywhere in Boardmaker.

Click here to download Fireworks Everywhere in pdf.
I've switched the pdf to Smarty Symbols for copyright purposes. I do pay for these symbols, so this link will take you to a modestly priced link. The Boardmaker link is free, but you do need the Boardmaker software.

Icons for matching


Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Pre-K Spanish Phrases ---handy little cheat sheet

Two days left!   Wow, this year has gone by fast!

Of course, ESY (Extended School Year) begins next week, so no break for me.  My big vacation comes July 23rd when David and I head to Indonesia to see our wayward daughter. 

I have a quick free download for all of you.  My colleague worked with a graduate intern, Maggie Fitch, from UNC who put together a list of common words or phrases a teacher or SLP might need to tell a preschooler in Spanish. For easy use, there is also a guide to pronunciation!   For me, next year, this may need to be tattooed on my hands and arms for easy access.  I love graduate interns!!!!  They can be totally helpful!

partial screenshot

Click here to download the list! Share with teachers.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Certain Proof: A Question of Worth (Changing the mindset---Kids shouldn't have to 'earn' inclusion)

Over the weekend, I watched a wonderful movie, Certain Proof: A Question of Worth.
I watched it, cried, and then watched it again the next day. This was an awesome experience--the best movies are those that make you dwell on lines, scenes, people the next days and weeks.  This was one!

Rather than writing up my own synopsis, I found one online from IMDb:   

 "Certain Proof: A Question of Worth" is a feature documentary about three children living with significant communication and physical disabilities, who struggle against the public schools in an emotional battle to prove their worth.
     Over the course of two and a half years, "Certain Proof" follows the lives of Josh, Colin and Kay, three children with cerebral palsy. Despite multiple disabilities, they fight to prove that they are able to learn and deserve to be taught. Colin finds "No Child Left Behind" has exceptions; Kay combats harsh stereotypes inside middle school; and Josh faces continual doubt that he can learn at all. They and their families dare to hope in a striking testament to the complexity of the human spirit." 

The purpose of this blog entry is to encourage any of you who work with children with severe physical disabilities to purchase or rent this movie and watch it.  Unfortunately, it's not available on Netflix, but I bought it through iTunes.

   The movie is about hope and determination--on the part of the kids and parents.  Watching this forced me to see life through their eyes--and then think about what I need to change in myself (my thoughts, expectations, practice) when working with children with significant communication difficulties.

Here are links to purchase:

From the Certain Proof website 

From iTunes (this is what I did)
     You can rent or buy

One of the stars, Kay, offers poignant insights about her thoughts, dreams, and life as a teen with a disability.  

Another child, Josh, visits Karen Erikson and through her motivating toys, books, manner, and fun shows his mom that he possesses wit, charm, and a desire to communicate that is hidden from his teachers at school

The movie has clips such as this---in the adult's desire for success, hand-over-hand activities.  The question becomes who is actually communicating here?

 Which picture works for you?
The one on the right of Kay and her friends in class?

or the one below in a more restricted setting?.

I loved this movie---it helped me view life both from the eyes of the parents, and from a child's perspective (especially Kay who was more articulate than the other two children).

  I also loved it from the point of view of a speech pathologist---I constantly asked myself how I could make the children's communication systems more effective.  Auditory scanning? Word prediction? Eye gaze?  These all crossed my mind. It's hard to second guess the professionals here in the movie, but there were examples of different systems to watch, and then ponder.

So if you love your job like I do, head over to iTunes or the Certain Proof website and make a purchase. You won't be disappointed.