Buy (Make) Me Some Peanuts & Crackerjacks! {with SpeechSnacks for a baseball game!}

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With the baseball season in “full swing,” (sorry but the puns will be plentiful in this post!)  I was inspired to create a treat that was reminiscent of America’s  favorite past time. I researched several different versions of crackerjacks on recipe websites.  I thought some contained way too much sugar, others overdid it with butter.  After “striking out” with several versions, this recipe seemed “scored some points”  for having a conservative balance of sugar and butter without overdoing it.  I don’t think my family will ever go back to a box a cracker jacks at the ball park again….I may just try to sneak in this homemade concoction instead!  To go along with my baseball themed treat,  I created a baseball game that was versatile enough to use with both my language and speech kiddos.  And I found a baseball field/whiteboard app on my ipad to help us keep track of our game…the kids loved watching their game come to life with this simplistic visual. I used a tissue box to create a “batter’s box” which contained all our  playing cards…and it was an opportunity to explain another baseball term to the kids who didn’t know what a real batters box was.  This is a great snack for families to make at home or for SLP’s to make and bring in to school to share with students (please be sure to check for peanut allergies—omit peanuts if this presents an issue).   This treat and game activity are sure to “hit a home run” with your little sluggers—so let’s play ball!!

Continue reading “Buy (Make) Me Some Peanuts & Crackerjacks! {with SpeechSnacks for a baseball game!}” »

Ladybug Salad—{with “SpeechSnacks” for /l/ sentences”

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Have you started planting your summer garden yet??  Will it be filled with flowers? Vegetables?  Both?  No matter what you decide to plant, you are sure to find lots of these little buggers in your flowers and veggies all season long—ladybugs!  So after I planted my flowers last week I was inspired to create a post that was seasonally appropriate, healthy, and a fun way to get the kids to try some fruits and veggies!  I recently discovered broccoli slaw in Trader Joe’s and have been using it to make salads every chance I get!  The ingredients double as a kid friendly “ladybug” salad and a crunchy, refreshing and sweet salad that grown ups will find satisfying as well.  I have also created my first post using Custom Boards by Smarty Ears (it was on sale this month for Better Hearing and Speech Month so I took full advantage.)  I LOVE this app for so many reasons—-you can create flashcards, game boards, worksheets…the possibilities are endless!!  Hope your speech kiddos working on /l/ at the sentence level find it fun and informative—not only will they be practicing their /l/, but learning some interesting facts about this cool creature as well!  And don’t forget to check out my fun video for ladybug salad—learn some math and spatial concepts while playing with your fruits and veggies!! Continue reading “Ladybug Salad—{with “SpeechSnacks” for /l/ sentences”” »

Truffula Trees!! {with SpeechSnacks for language building ideas}

PicMonkey Collage truffula

In my last post, I recycled produce containers and paper bags to create birds nests for a Spring language activity.  Today, I continue my tribute to Earth Day with my interpretation of Truffula Trees from the wonderful book and movie, “The Lorax,”  by Dr. Seuss.  I saw this movie with my son and walked away from it with a deeper respect and appreciation for  Mother Earth.  Truffula Trees are super easy to make in the classroom or at home.  Get creative with the tree trunks and experiment with different fruits.   And please send me your feedback and pictures too!!!….I’d love to know how your trees turned  out!  

 

TRUFFULA TREES!!!!

**always check for food allergies before making any hands-on projects  involving food (yes, even fruit!)

I am using blackberries and green grapes to construct the trunks of my trees. I think the textures of each and varied tastes of each fruit make the trees more interesting and fun to eat!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can find cotton candy in many of your local dollar stores and supermarkets. It looks a lot like the wispy tufts of the Truffula trees. Use sparingly–remember this is pure sugar—and some artificial coloring!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Questions to help elicit conversation while creating your trees in the classroom—-

What else does cotton candy remind you of in nature? 

Describe how cotton candy feels. 

What happens when you put it in your mouth (how does it change?)

What events is cotton candy sold at? 

FOR STORY COMPREHENSION: After reading the story with your students, check out these questions.   (most appropriate for upper elementary/middle school)

Search the book for words that contain speech sounds that your students are working on.  Have them repeat the words, phrases and sentences containing their speech sounds.

i.e.: for /l/ sound practice I came up with these words:

LORAX— TRUFFULA— BARBALOOTS— ONCE-LER— GRICKLE GRASS— UNLESS!

I used long cocktail stirrers to thread on my fruit. You can also use wooden skewers but don’t let your tree get too tall or it might not stand up for long!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Long cocktail stirrers are rounded at the ends and safe for little hands to use!  Toothpicks are sharp so be careful if  you use them! 

No need to make them exactly as shown in the picture—Kids can determine how to pattern the “tree trunks.” 

Take a vote prior to purchasing your materials–ask your students to help you brainstorm a list of possibilities—-the two most popular items can be the ones you purchase–this will keep things simple and cost-effective for you!  

Some “tree trunk” possibilities: red grapes, strawberry chunks, raspberries, marshmallows…use your imagination!!   

I used a thick piece of Styrofoam and inserted my sticks into it to display my forest of truffula trees!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Can you come up with a list of different types of trees with your students?   

Go online and search for images of various trees.  Print them out and label them. 

Put your print outs into a binder or staple together to make a book of trees.  If your school is located on property that has surrounding trees, take a nature walk with your students (weather and season permitting!)and see how many you can identify from your book of trees.

If you spot a Truffula tree, please be sure to take a picture and send it to me!!!    

(photo credit: Dr. Seuss)

 

 

Sequencing Pizza—-{with SpeechSnacks for “first, next, last” and good listening skills}

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Is it a pizza?  Is it a burger?? It’s both—and your kids will love it!!!  And to close out the month of March with another “green” recipe—I’ve topped this pizza-burger with some healthy salad greens.  I used arugula but any leafy greens will work—romaine, spinach, kale—take your pick.  Top it with a light dressing like balsamic vinagrette or squeezed lemon with olive oil, light salt and pepper. 

Let the kiddos help press and roll out the dough, add the toppings in proper sequence as you have them repeat them back to you and you’ve turned your healthy dinner into a language lesson.    This week I’ve included a sequencing/listening game, a fun pizza itunes app, a recipe for edible play-doh so they can have fun playing with their foods and a pizza themed toy to play at home or in your speech lessons.   There’s enough pizza burger fun to keep ‘em happy, healthy and busy for quite a while! Continue reading “Sequencing Pizza—-{with SpeechSnacks for “first, next, last” and good listening skills}” »

Holy Guacamole!! “Going Green” in March–with speechsnacks for GREEN idioms

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March is here!   And with it, we welcome Dr. Suess Day, St. Patty’s Day, the first day of spring—all represented by the color GREEN!  So Speechsnacks will be featuring GREEN recipes throughout the month.    Nature provides us with some beautiful shades of green, many of which can be found in the foods we eat (or should be eating!)  Throw out the green food coloring and try some real green foods that not only taste amazing, but contain incredible amount of nutrients.    On today’s menu, Homemade Guacamole Dip.  Enjoy a batch while you catch up on the March Madness College basketball scene—or if that’s not your thing, enjoy it with a beverage of your choice as you celebrate St. Patty’s Day with your lads and lassies!  

And don’t forget to check out the speech and language activities that will center around the GREEN theme as well!  Today’s “speechsnacks” are geared to your upper elementary and middle school kiddos as we explore idioms that contain the word GREEN.  And learn the names of those awesome shades of GREEN in your crayola box that you may have never really paid attention to before.   And have fun playing the idiom game while earning some “green” .       

Continue reading “Holy Guacamole!! “Going Green” in March–with speechsnacks for GREEN idioms” »

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