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Are You a Stressed Out Speech-Language Pathology Graduate Student? [Free Download]

Are You a Stressed Out Speech-Language Pathology Graduate Student? [Free Download]

Listen up, this blog post is for all you future speech-language pathologists out there. The ones who are currently fighting their ways through the jungles of graduate school – this one is for you. I know you’re probably thinking about final exams or the Praxis exam and you might be a bit stressed out (dare I say scared to death?). Well, I’ve been meaning to tell you that it’s okay to be stressed out and scared. Trust me. Everyone gets stressed out and scared, and if you ever meet someone who tells you anything different, don’t waste your time with that person because he/she is a liar, liar, pants on fire.

But what if I fail my final exam for (insert SLP graduate class title here) or what if I flunk the Praxis exam?

Trust me, you’re not going to. I know I don’t personally know you, but here is something that I do know – you are pursuing the field of speech-language pathology because you are obsessed with the beauty that is human communication. It pains you when a person is unable to effectively communicate. It brings you tears of joy when a person finds their voice. See, you are in this for the right reasons, and that alone will get you past any exam you need to take or hurdle you need to jump over.

But I really don’t know everything there is to know about speech-language pathology yet!

Guess what? I don’t either. There I said it and I am not embarrassed in the least. It is absolutely impossible to know it all. I have been a practicing speech-language for a number of years and every single day that goes by, I find myself saying, “Wow! I never knew that!” See, I learned something new because there is always something new to learn. I’ll be honest with you, you know more than you think and once you enter the field and start working, you will know and learn even more. That is how you will grow as a professional because that is how we all grow as professionals.

Silence those monsters and kick ’em to the curb!

You know those negative thoughts in your brain? They are all made up. They are lies. They are the same thing as those spooky little monsters under your bed – simply shadows caused by something that isn’t real. So just relax, shut your eyes, take a deep breath, and tell those monsters to hit the road because they can’t hold you back. You were put on this Earth to do awesome things. So go get ’em tiger!

Need some more motivation? How about this FREE DOWNLOAD?

Click HERE to download your very own SLP graduate student motivational poster. I made this just for you. Your mission is to hang this poster up and read the words on it every single day. Will you accept your mission?

In closing . . .

SLP_Echo (one of my fav blogs) just wrote a spectacular blog post where she offers interviewing advice to future SLPs trying to get admittance into a SLP graduate school. Though her post focuses on students interviewing with graduate programs, I believe that the content is extremely relevant for any newly graduated (or soon-to-be graduated) SLPs who are thinking about what the interview questions will be like as they interview for their first SLP job. This post is one of those things that I wish I had a few years back, so please do yourself a favor and check it out.

Rock Monsters and Speech-Language Pathologists Rock! [Free Download]

Rock Monsters and Speech-Language Pathologists Rock! [Free Download]

Every single speech-language pathologist has a token catch phrase that he or she always says during speech therapy. Mine is, “You rock!” and I always catch myself shouting it to my students. I guess it is just my thing, ya know? Well, not too long ago, one of my speech students actually gave me a homemade gift that blew my mind . . . it was a rock with a happy face on it! This kiddo found a perfectly shaped rock outside, picked it up, used a marker to draw a happy face on it, and then gave it to me. “Mr. Raj, I made you this rock monster. It is for you because YOU ROCK, too!” announced the youngster as I was standing there cheery eyed (and almost teary eyed).

Do you think that your speech therapy students rock?

If you think they rock (and I’m sure you do), how about letting them know by finding and decorating some rock monsters together! Then, you can encourage them to give their rock monsters to someone that they care about as a fun homemade gift. It is ridiculously easy; let me tell you how to do it.

Step 1 – Find a rock!

If your school has a few trees and some dirt on the campus, chances are, you will find some rocks. Why not take the opportunity to take your students outside to hunt for their potential rock monster? Make sure the rocks they choose are large enough so that they are able to be drawn on. Also, make sure that the rocks are a light color so that the markers will show up on the rocks.

Step 2 – Draw a face on your rock!

Two eyes. A nose. A mouth. Anything their hearts desires. Use that good ol’ imagination to create a spectacular face to really bring that rock monster to life!

Step 3 – Give your rock a background!

Encourage your kiddos to use their creativity to construct a unique profile of their rock monster. In fact, I made a FREE Rock Monster Activity worksheet that can be downloaded by clicking HERE. It contains the following fabulous questions on it:

  • This rock monster’s name is _________. (Examples: Boo Boo, Scooter, Lizzy)
  • This rock monster is from _________. (Examples: outer space, China, Hollywood)
  • This rock monster likes to sleep inside of a _________. (Examples: pocket, book bag, desk)
  • This rock monster likes to eat _________. (Examples: pizza, mozzarella sticks, carrots)
  • This rock monster likes to drink _________. (Examples: tomato juice, chocolate milk, water)

In closing . . .

You’d be surprised at just how much my speech kiddos loved this idea. Once we fill out our Rock Monster Activity worksheet, we practice our auditory memory skills by attempting to remember all of the details about the new rock monsters on the speech therapy table. Trust me, you and your kiddos will have a MONSTER good time!

Oh, and I almost forget to tell you about another FREE DOWNLOAD!

Click HERE to download your very own SLPs ROCK motivational poster. I know you will think that the poster rocks! Haha! 🙂

Multiple Choice Mini Homework Sheets for Speech Therapy [Free Download]

Multiple Choice Mini Homework Sheets for Speech Therapy [Free Download]

I am just going to come right out and say it – my students used to NEVER do their speech-language therapy homework. This fact got me frustrated because I believe that when students actually practice OUTSIDE of the speech room (for example: at home), their communication abilities grow much faster. So, I started to think long and hard on how I could solve this homework predicament. Was there something different that I could do with the speech-language therapy homework that I was assigning?

“Mr. Raj, I would have done your homework but I lost it.”

Have you ever heard a statement like this from one of your speech kiddos? I am sure you have because I used to hear it ALL THE TIME! Upon further inspection, I noticed there was some sort of black hole that existed between my speech room and the child’s home. The homework was just disappearing and they didn’t know how it happened! Clearly it had to be a black hole, right? (That black hole seems comparable to the one that exists inside of all washing machines; you know how sometimes you mysteriously lose a sock but you just don’t know where it went?! It probably fell into a black hole, haha!)

Let’s make the dittos smaller!

I came up with the idea to create my own homework worksheets, but instead of making my dittos the size of standard paper, 8.5″ wide and 11″ tall, I made them pocket sized. These dittos are about the size of a cell phone and have been working GREAT!

Just put your homework in your pocket!

I have been handing out pint-sized homework assignments and I have found that once the homework is physically in the student’s pocket, the black hole cannot make it disappear! Eureka! (And since us speech-language pathologists love data – my homework return rate is now hovering around 80% which is terrific when you compare it to the initial 30%.)

Free download for you to print out!

In celebration of my wonderful discovery, I made you some FREE teeny tiny multiple choice articulation question dittos (click HERE to download ’em). These are perfect for students who are working towards improving their initial /S/ sound. Trust me, I guarantee your students will love bringing these questions home to share with their parents because they really spice up every conversation!

Want more multiple choice questions?

If you adore my multiple choice questions and you own an Apple device, feel free download my app called Multiple Choice Articulation by clicking HERE. It features a collection of over 500 sound-specific multiple choice questions and over 150 minutes worth of silly and thought-provoking audio questions and answers. Tons of clinicians are using this bad boy and it just might become your NEW FAVORITE APP! Give it a try and let me know how it goes, friend.

Learning About Phobias in Speech Therapy [Free Download]

Learning About Phobias in Speech Therapy [Free Download]

Did you know that if you’re afraid of numbers, you have arithmophobia? Or that if you’re afraid of bees, you have apiphobia? Pretty darn interesting, right? Well, if you love learning random trivia as much as I do, you will get a kick out of the following speech therapy idea. It is chock full of new words that are sure to make you and your students say, “Whoa! I never knew that! Totally cool!”

Can we chat about phobias in speech therapy?

Oh, you bet we can! Let me describe to you a little articulation activity I like to do with speech therapy kiddos that consistently introduces them to a ton of new words. Together, we look up some phobias online at a site called The Phobia List. There are hundreds of phobias to be found and they’re all usually tricky to articulate (perfect for speech class!). Have each one of your students search for phobias that contain their target sound. After they collect a bunch, be prepared to have a BLAST trying to properly pronounce the newly discovered phobia words. Here are some of my students’ all-time favorites:

  • Alektorophobia – Fear of chickens (medial R)
  • Ambulophobia – Fear of walking (medial L)
  • Bibliophobia – Fear of books (medial L)
  • Cyclophobia – Fear of bicycles (initial S)
  • Dromophobia – Fear of crossing streets (R blend)
  • Insectophobia – Fear of insects (medial S)
  • Papyrophobia- Fear of paper (medial R)
  • Rupophobia- Fear of dirt (initial R)
  • Selenophobia- Fear of the moon (initial S)
  • Vestiphobia- Fear of clothing (medial S)

Auditory memory, too!

In addition to remembering to say the target sound appropriately, I also enjoy throwing some auditory memory tasks their way by encouraging my speech therapy students to remember the SPECIFIC definition of the SPECIFIC phobia they just learned about. Was he or she able to remember that bathmophobia meant the fear of stairs? Or that botanophobia meant the fear of plants? All in all, this phobia-centered session has the ability to exercise so many aspects of our communicating brain!

Create a phobia for homework!

Once this speech therapy session comes to an end, the phobia fun doesn’t have to stop. How about asking your students to invent and write down some brand new phobias that they feel they might have for homework? If you give this a try, trust me, you are going to LOVE the responses. I laughed my head off when I read DadsHomeCookingPhobia and SpidersInTheToiletPhobia on my student’s homework paper.

In closing . . .

Do you think the speech therapy students on your caseload would like talking about phobias? I think it is sure worth a shot. Give my speech therapy idea a try and let me know how it goes. I would love to know some of the phobias they come up with.

Oh, and don’t forget about your FREE DOWNLOAD!

Click HERE to download your very own phobias coloring sheet.

*** FREE resource?! Download it HERE!! ***

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