Speech Resources for the Real World (Ep 150)Sep 23, 2022
IEP goals should prepare a child for further education, employment, and independent living, and that includes their speech goals! I'm always talking about how to do IEP resets and think about IEPs differently. We have to apply that strategy and find the tools and resources to truly help a child now and in the future. I can't wait to tell you all about Sago Mini First Words!
First Words is an app that reminded me why we need to focus more on our real-world application of communication and speech skills. I watched my brother struggle with communication and speech throughout his school years. Being a special education teacher, I saw speech therapists working inside the classroom on communication goals, frustrated with the tools provided to them. Even today, I see how schools and therapy systems struggle with the out-of-date tools they currently have. For example, I've seen prompts and apps that use cassette players, discontinued phones, and taxis as visuals that young students are supposed to recognize. When was the last time you used a cassette player or a landline phone? What about a taxi? Most likely, you took an Uber or a Lyft and played your music on your smartphone. These items could be easily swapped out for more modern and relevant tools to help our students thrive, but we need to work together to make that happen.
Level Up Your Communication IEP Goals
I love real-world examples! First Words is great because it uses real videos of a child using the item/term which will make it easier for students to connect with the concept while practicing articulation and pronunciation. Instead of using old-fashioned flashcards that have cassette players on them, let's make sure we're using real-life examples and that we're making it fun!
Interaction and gameplay are important for engaging students. Games don't disappear with childhood, right? I still play games like pool, Bingo, and Uno with my family when we get together! Welcome gamification into your classroom and into your curriculum to not only engage your students but also to build on those real-world skills. Do you know what else is encouraged during gameplay? Communication!
As we look at building IEPs for the real-world, find resources like First Words that help connect student interest and engagement with their unique needs.
Go check out Sago Mini because they've got so many resources to help your child succeed! They've even got a show on Apple+ that corresponds to the apps and learning tools.
You have to be that teacher or that parent that says, "I'm not going to get stuck in using what I have." Be the person that looks forward and explores what is possible in applying this learning long-term. Make sure that we have preferred activities, that it's fun, and that it's real.
Here's a glance at the episode...
[2:40] "These items could be easily swapped out for more modern and relevant tools to help our students thrive, but we need to work together to make that happen."
[6:05] "Welcome gamification into your classroom and into your curriculum to not only engage your students but also to build on those real-world skills.
[9:03] "You have to be that teacher or that parent that says, "I'm not going to get stuck in using what I have."
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