Thursday, July 19, 2012

Pre-workshop jitters and the joys of church yard sales

Next week, I will be going to several workshops. It will be my second experience going to a workshop (let alone 3 different ones) and the first time participating in my state's summer institute program. The courses I'm signed up for don't necessarily scream "SLP", but hopefully they will be useful with my younger ones.

Visual phonics- as I have a student who suffers from a hearing impairment
Letterland for Kindergarten- the EC teachers at my school use it
Social Skills Across the Lifespans- the one that best meets my needs as I'm still grappling with teaching students social skills. (I blame this on being an introvert and feeling socially awkward myself as a kid.)

I'm worried that the four days will be packed with so much information that I won't be able to retain it all. My brain needs to retrain itself from the joys of having a semester-long indulgence in knowledge.

Now on to the more happy topic.....

One of my favorite types of yard sales are ones that support religious organizations. (And, it has nothing to do with my religious beliefs.) Churches and youth groups put on some of the most well-organized yard sales in my community. The items are usually displayed clearly on tables rather than in piles or mysterious heaps in overflowing boxes. Perhaps, I am a yard sale snob? It's just so much nicer when you can clearly see everything.

This past weekend, I convinced my mother to go with me to a 10 family yard sale in support of a Church. It was a very pleasant experience because I got this little guy.....

for FREE. I plan on using him for an articulation game by replacing the hot potato cards with my Weber ones. The kids pass him around and when the music stops, they have to go through the articulation cards and lose the one that they produce (at whatever level) the best.

I also picked up some old conversation cards, Let's Talk!, that were originally intended for learning foreign languages. I plan on using them for social situations as the prompts ask the speaker to act out what he/she would do in real-life scenarios. It absolutely amazes me to find items intended for ESL or teaching foreign languages that can be modified for speech. My favorite find are the "Phonics Monsters" from laternfish. I used them for phonemic awareness as well as articulation last year.

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