How to create your own articulation game

A GREAT tip for SLP’s and parents alike. How to create your own articulation game

Articulation Innovation

Articulation drills can be a kiddo’s worst nightmare but here’s a trick that I’ve encountered to make it more enjoyable. In fact, some of my preschool and elementary age clients get excited to practice their target words using this technique! I call it “Articulation Innovation”, as it is when the client makes up their OWN articulation game using YOUR materials.

Step 1: Hit the Goodwill to hunt for some gently used toys.

Step 2: Go to the dollar store and buy LOTS of scotch tape.

Step 3: Google search for free picture cards of target words or have the child make their own by writing the target words on construction paper.

Step 4: Present the toys to the child and say “why don’t you make up the game today?”

Then, your job is DONE. Well, not including the data collection and facilitating target word practice but, they have saved you the headache of trying to find an engaging way to say a sound 100+ times.

You will be surprised just how creative children are, as I have had clients come up with crazy fun games! For example, one time we taped target words to wind-up cars, let them rip and then shot them with a nerf gun. Whichever one was shot is the one that we practice for at least 5-10 correct productions.

I have also raced wind-up cars (from the Dollar Spot at Target) to see which target word will win, as well as used a plastic golfing set to “golf” for target words taped inside of Tupperware containers. As much as I enjoy purchasing materials from Super Duper or teacherspayteachers, I would encourage more SLP’s to let elementary aged students develop their own games to increase participation when practicing their speech sounds.

This gives the client part ownership of the therapy session, which I have found makes them more motivated than using someone else’s (very expensive) articulation game. Also, you can most likely use this method with most of your caseload, making planning for therapy a cinch!

This article was a contribution by one of the SAGE SLP’s.  While it pertains directly to the work of a Speech and Language pathologist, there are certainly important take-aways for parents as well.

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