Paperclips In Speech Therapy: Use What You Have

Paperclips In Speech Therapy: Use What You Have

Sometimes SLP’s have use what they have in their speech rooms for therapy materials. SLP’s either have NO budget (appalling), or limited time to lesson plan because of their workload. I remember a college professor telling me that an SLP should be able to do therapy with just paper and a pencil. SLP’s are the queens and kings of finding amazing ways to use unconventional items. Today I want to talk about how to use paperclips in speech therapy!

SLP's on a budget using paperclips in speech therapy

My current speech budget situation

Currently I get $200 for supplies in my current school district. I know it isn’t much, but I will take whatever I can get! It took me three whole months to decide what I wanted to purchase. I was coveting that $200 with my life. Thank goodness my district uses amazon prime because I was able to find some affordable deals and get a good stash of materials. Luckily all the districts that I have worked for have been amazing at paying for trainings and/or materials when I really needed them to help my caseload. #sothankful
Paperclips in speech therapy is a great resource for using what you have to do therapy. Lots of speech therapy ideas

What to do when you aren’t given ANY money for supplies?

When we don’t have the funds for lots of materials, you have to get creative with finding resources to teach your students. Back when I first started my career there was no pinterest, TPT, or social media to help inspire me with therapy planning. Blogs were just starting to become something that people liked to do, and it wasn’t easy to find materials. Thankfully today we have so many easy ways to get ideas when we have LITTLE TO NO money.

Ways to Find FREE Ideas

Sign up for a pinterest account to search easy DIY therapy ideas. Follow lots of speech blogs at one time using bloglovin’ to get easy therapy ideas. Hallie Sherman from Speech Time Fun did a great blog post about using paperclips in speech therapy that you can check out HERE. Instagram is one of the best places to find fun therapy ideas from other SLP’s. You can search popular hashtags like #slpeeps #schoolslp or #slpbloggers. My handle is @thedabblingspeechie and my hashtag is #dabblingslp if you want to stay up to date with all the latest in my speech world.

Some easy tricks for acquiring therapy materials

Veteran SLP’s have given me advice that if you are allotted $100-200 per year, then use that money to stock up on cardstock, binders, pencils, laminating sheets, etc. Then, use your own personal money for items like games, books, and toys so you will have those therapy materials wherever you are placed. If you are looking for some resources that can help get you through, then read my blog post on How I would spend $100 on TPT. There is a free caseload therapy planner in that post. My caseload therapy planners helps SLP’s see what types of goals they are treating so the SLP can make sure to find specific materials for those goals. Need DIY therapy ideas? Follow my DIY Speech Therapy board on pinterest for new inspiration!

Let’s talk paperclips in speech therapy

Sometimes we have to use common items around our speech rooms because we ran out of lesson planning time. Or remember that beautifully thought out lesson you had ready for your therapy group and your little speechies would have nothing to do with it!? Those are the times that I have had to improvise and find WHATEVER I could to make the rest of the session engaging. Sometimes the simplest ideas can be the most effective for ours students. Here are some ways that I have been using paperclips in speech therapy.

Monitoring Expected Vs. Unexpected Behaviors

Do you have students that need visual reminders to monitor their expected behaviors while you are teaching a lesson? Just write on a half sheet of paper or index card and slip paperclips on the expected or unexpected behavior visual. At the end of the session you can use that as data to determine how expected the student was during the session.

Using paperclips to hold during a conversation lesson

Have a social skills group working on conversational tasks? Write down visuals you want to use on index cards. Slip them on paperclips and you have easy to hold visuals! The students can hold up a “question” visual if they want to ask a question. When a student has to identify expected vs. unexpected in a social situation, the student can hold up the correct visual after the SLP reads the social situation.

Turn any deck of cards into magnetic fun

Busy Bee Speech gave me the idea to use my magnetic wand with paperclips. I placed paperclips on my Super Duper Card Decks and grabbed my magnetic wand. Students were able to pick stimulus cards using the magnetic wand. It adds a little fun to the activity! I printed up little gingerbread men and foxes to slide under the paperclips. If a student got a gingerbread man then they got to keep him. If they found a fox, then the fox ate their gingerbread man and they had to lose a gingerbread man.

With a thick popsicle stick (currently at your local dollar store), a magnetic strip (got this magnetic strip on amazon, Affiliate link included) and a set of paperclips, an SLP now has an engaging therapy tool! This DIY magnetic strip can be used as a behavior working for chart. It can also be used for counting speech productions.

After each 5-10 repetitions of a sound, the student gets to put a paperclip on the strip. Students can also work on their fluency enhancing strategies. Each paperclip could be a pacing visual while practicing sentences. The paperclips can also be used as a reminder to use easy onset. This can also be used for teaching the concepts “on” and “off”. So many things!

SLP’s can work on finding matches with word associations, categories, or multiple meanings. You can make paperclips with yarn or string. Just tie the strip at both ends to two paperclips. Place stimulus cards in a sensory bin or on the table. Have your students hunt for the matches. Once they find a match, they can slip them on the paperclips. Hands on activity for the win! I used my Mitten Match Up Sensory Bin activities with these paperclips.

How do you use paperclips in speech therapy? I would love to add some ideas to my stash!

Articulation ideas that WILL get high repetitions

Articulation ideas that WILL get high repetitions

Trying to get those 100+ trials during articulation therapy can be hard! Student motivation and mixed therapy groups can make it tough to get high repetitions. For myself, I need new ideas to keep it fresh and fun for ME! Telling a student to “say it again” in several articulation sessions can feel redundant. So, I have lots of articulation ideas that will get high repetitions to keep things productive for all parties involved.
articulation therapy ideas that will get high repetitions

Here are some fun ideas to get those 100+ repetitions in articulation therapy!

Articulation Ideas That Will Get High Repetitions
Articulation ideas that WILL get high repetitions

This DIY ZAP IT game is perfect for getting high repetitions.  My students stay motivated the entire session.  Write different numbers on popsicle sticks (make sure you put some high numbers like 10 and 15).  Then, write zap a friend, zap 1, zap 2, etc.  Stick the popsicle sticks in a bucket and have students pick a stick. If they pick a 15, they get 15 points and they have to say their speech sound 15 times.  The person with the most points wins the game! HERE is a rule guide that you can print and reference during therapy.

articulation ideas that will get high repetitions

I use my articulation interactive flipbooks to keep my students engaged while I am getting high repetitions.  Plus, it is easy for me to take data on their performance.  Try my /l/ flipbook for FREE.

diy abacus for speech therapy

Keep hands busy during articulation practice using a DIY abacus!

Adapting Games To Get High Repetitions In Articulation Therapy

articulation ideas that will get high repetitions

Find games like Uno to use during articulation therapy. Play the game as the rules intended, but whatever card the student lays down, that is how many times they have to practice their speech sound.  If the student gets a draw 4, make them practice 20 productions!  Get creative with your “speech rules” for practicing during this game.

articulation ideas that will get high repetitions

You can use a Toss Across Game (amazon affiliate link included) to get high articulation repetitions. Use post it notes and write numbers on the X’s and O’s. When the student throws the bean bag and hits an X or O, they have to say their articulation sound that many times.

Race To 100 game is a great way to get 100 productions and keep the session energy up! Put my Race to 100 game card in a plastic protective sheet or laminate.  Grab a die (make your own with a wooden block, so you can add high numbers like 8, 10, 12, 15) and start rolling!

Click Here To Download The Race To 100 Game TemplateClick Here To Get The Race To 100 Game Template


articulation ideas that will get high repetitions

Want seasonal versions of this game? Just click the yellow button below to grab those! Click Here to get the seasonal Race To 100 Game

articulation ideas that will get high repetitions

Articulation Foldable Wallet Books craftivity are a fun way to keep hands busy during the session.  Students can practice each word 5x and that makes a total of 105 productions with this craftivity.  What I love about this activity is that it can also be sent home for additional practice!  Try my final s-blends & l-blends wallet books for FREE.


The Articulation Challenge is something I do with my speech students that like a little competition.  I use my digital counters, my timer on my phone and my articulation flashcards for this activity.  I tell my students that I am going to set the time and we are going to see how many productions we can get in 3 minutes.  Then, I have them just start drilling.  When the timer beeps, we check our score!  Usually my students will see that they got well over 100 productions and will want to try again to see if they can beat their score. It is perfect for my 4th and 5th grade boys that like competition! My SH, CH, DJ, TH flashcards are FREE in my store.

These are my articulation ideas for getting high repetitions in therapy while keeping the FUN going. Next time, I am going to show you ideas for getting more repetitions at the sentence and conversational levels.  Hope this was helpful!!

That Darn R! 10 TPT Speech Therapy Materials to Treat R

That Darn R! 10 TPT Speech Therapy Materials to Treat R

Treating the /r/ phoneme can be tricky, tiresome and just plain annoying for both the clinician and student! I haven’t met an SLP in the elementary, middle school or high school level that doesn’t need more speech therapy materials for r.

speech therapy activities for treating r. Once you get an /r/ established, there are some great activities on TPT.

The best advice I got from a veteran SLP when I asked how to teach a child to say /r/ was “just grab a pair of gloves, a tongue depressor and hope for the best!”

Dwight Schrute sums up most SLP’s feelings about the /r/ phoneme in his office video clip!  He says “R is one of the most menacing of sounds!  That’s why they call it murder and not muck duck!”  My thoughts exactly Dwight. Here is a post by SLP Natalie Snyders about getting a good /r/. There is also some really good ideas from Playing With Words 365 about teaching the /r/ phoneme.

Articulation Activities To Treat The /R/ Phoneme

Here are some TPT products that I have made or bought from TPT that have helped keep my kids motivated and get good results with mastering the /r/!!r initial flip book blog post1.  My interactive initial r and r-blend flipbooks are perfect for your older students that can read and write well! My prevocalic and vocalic r flip books have been great as well!

speech therapy materials for r

2. Figuratively speeching has a great articulation placemat set that is great for sending home for additional practice. It provides activities for the whole week on one sheet with letters included to send home!

primary punch artic practice

3. Primary Punch has some wonderful home practice worksheets that are print n’ go!

erik mini homework r

4. Erik Raj has these super fun Mini homework sheets for articulation.  They have great silly questions with the /r/ phoneme that students can discuss at home.  Great resource for working on carry over!  Plus, it doesn’t waste lots of paper.  I will have my students try to discuss the question with a friend, the teacher and a parent.

vocalic r flashcards

Speech Therapy Materials For /R/

5. My print n’ go flashcards have been very useful in my speech room.  You can either print up, hole punch and hold on a key ring or staple together.  I started putting my flashcards in plastic cover protectors and having students cross off the words as they say their /r/ sound.  Makes for easy therapy prep and LOTS of practice.  I store in a three hole punch folder, so I can send home with the student if I want them to practice over the weekend.


6. Sublime Speech has these handy Articulation Strips for /r/ that are great to work on /r/ at the word and single sentence level. They are easy to store and have visual cues on the strips to help with reminding students to think about their /r/.

r for homework

7. Miss V’s Speech World has a great  52 Weekly /r/ homework worksheets product that makes planning home practice activities a breeze!!  They last for the entire week and have creative fun activities for the students to complete.


8.  Dollar Challenge Articulation Activity from Speech Room News is a great activity to get students to get 100 trials per session.  She includes /r/ initial, r-blends and vocalic r sheets as well as homework sheets!!


9. Articulation Secret Codes from Kiwi Speech are fun worksheets that keep the students engaged while you are drilling with each student in the group.  These are great for home practice activities too!


10.  Busy Bee Speech has a great product to help with working on generalizing speech sounds into spontaneous speech.  Her Articulation Carry-Over Activities are perfect for therapy sessions or sending home to work on structured conversation.


What resources do you use and love for treating the /r/ phoneme?  I would love to add some more resources to my therapy materials stash.  Did I mention that I have 10 kids working on /r/ this year?

Race to 100 Articulation Drill Games

Looking for articulation drill games that will keep articulation therapy exciting and productive? Then, you came to the right place.

race to 100 articulation game

What articulation drill games do you use in therapy? I am always trying to find articulation drill games to keep my kids motivated to practice their articulation sounds over and over again!  Heck, I need motivation to stay encouraged. Do you know how many times a day I use the phrase “say your ____ sound 10 more times”? After the third articulation group, I need a piece of chocolate!  I totally feel like this speech pathologist when it comes to running articulation groups! The kids get tired of using picture cards fast, so it’s great when I come up with something fun!!

untitled I thought of a fun game to “trick” my students into producing their sound 100 times…muhaaahhhhhh!

articulation drill games

My game is called RACE TO 100.  I took a wooden block and taped different numbers to each side of the block.  When the students roll the die, they get to color or check off that number of spaces as well as practice their speech sound that many number of times.  Whoever gets to 100 first is the winner! Click on the photo above to grab my game template or you can grab it HERE!

*******November 2016 Update********

articulation ideas that will get high repetitions

I created a cute Race To 100 Game Template that is easy to prep!  Just print and put in a plastic sheet protector or laminate.  Then, you can use this game over and over again during articulation therapy! Click the yellow button to get your free pdf.

Click Here To Download The Race To 100 Game Template

How do you keep articulation therapy fun and motivating?


3 Ways To Use Articulation Flipbooks In Speech

3 Ways To Use Articulation Flipbooks In Speech

Having materials to use with group therapy can be tricky at times. If you are able to pair articulation and phonology students together, it can be hard to plan group lessons when all the students are working on a different sound, need a slightly different approach to therapy or are varying levels of skill mastery.

Let’s not even go down the mixed group situation when every student has a completely different target area lol.

These are the problems I face as a school based SLP. Then, on top of trying to increase repetitions, I also have to make time for data collection. It can be overwhelming especially if you’re caseload is growing past 55.

articulation flipbooks for speech therapy to help you increase repetitions, get your students engaged in articulation therapy and collect data with ease! #dabblingslp #slpeeps #schoolslp #speechtherapy #slps #articulationtherapy

Articulation Flipbooks Help You Lesson Plan Easily

I created interactive articulation flipbooks to have something I could consistently pull out for students to work on during the session. I felt much more confident as an SLP knowing that my students were focused on their goals even if I was working with another student. Students became familiar with the routine of the session because I used the flipbooks as a warm up or closing activity to the session.

3 Ways To Use Articulation Flipbooks In Speech

Use the word lists in the books as an auditory bombardment listening warm up for your students with phonological processes. Have student turn on their listening ears and listen to you model words with target sound. You can also have students identify if you produced the sound correctly (auditory discrim). Use the word lists as a guide, so you don’t have to rack your brain thinking of target words.

articulation flipbooks for speech therapy #dabblingslp #slpeeps #articulationtherapy #speechtherapy

When you need to progress monitor students or do a data probe, use these articulation flipbooks as an independent work station. When I did this with my kindergarten students, it was amazing to see them quiet and engaged in working on their sound. The kids seriously love using dry erase markers. In the picture above, I put dots for the productions that were correct for easy data collection.

Use articulation flipbooks to increase repetitions and progress with your student's goals.

I use the phrases and picture scenes to work on generalizing the student’s articulation skills beyond the word level.  If I have a mixed group, I will also use my flip books to work on building MLU and use the stimulus pictures to target vocabulary and grammar goals.

Lastly, these flipbooks can be loaned out to families and teachers to have available for students to practice in the classroom or home setting. This provides a clear and structured way your students can get daily practice in with his/her sound. Plus, the teacher will like that the activities have spelling incorporated in the book.

Want to Try Out Articulation Flipbooks With Your Students?

If you are new to interactive articulation flipbooks, try out my L Flipbook for FREE. You will see an increase in getting higher production repetitions in a shorter amount of time.

L articulation flipbook activity that is FREE. #slpeeps #schoolslp #speechtherapy #slps #speechies

And, I don’t know what it is about using dry erase markers, but adding that privilege of using them truly makes the kids more engaged with practicing. I am currently in love with Ultra Fine Dry Erase markers (amazon affiliate) for my articulation flipbooks.

How have you been utilizing my interactive articulation flip books in your therapy rooms?  I would love to see your pictures in action on instagram. Just tag me @thedabblingspeechie

Summer Speech Therapy Activities: TPT Round UP

Summer Speech Therapy Activities: TPT Round UP

Summer is just around the corner and it is a great theme to use in therapy!  Having summer speech therapy activities to send home as homework are perfect for those summer months.  If you are working this summer, then grab some summer speech therapy activities on TPT!!

summer speech therapy activities for SLPs, special education teachers and ESL teachers. Great for summer themes or summer school lessons.

I started using my summer themed resources this week and plan to use them till the end of May.  Check out my round up of free and paid TPT products that I have found to help plan therapy.  I have links categorized by target area, so you can easily find the items you need!

Summer Speech Therapy Activities

Planning speech therapy lessons is a whole a lot easier when you pick a theme! If I want to do a BBQ theme, then I try to find resources that will cover goals for my whole caseload. These summer speech therapy activities are listed by target area, so you can quickly find items in the areas you need for your summer theme.


Grillin’ Up Articulation: SH, CH, DJ

Grillin’ Up Articulation: S-blends & L-blends

Firework Artic FREEBIE K,G,F

Cool Minimal Pairs: s-blends

My Sound Castles for Articulation: ALL Sounds NO prep

Summer Themed BUNDLE No Prep Artic L,S,R,SH,TH,V

Flip Flop Articulation Matching Game

Let’s Go Camping: An Articulation Unit

Flip Flop Articulation Dot Art NO prep ALL sounds

Oceans of Words-Awesome Articulation Worksheets

Summer Color, Cut & Glue Articulation Activities for Early Developing Sounds

Summer Color, Cut & Glue Articulation Activities-Later Developing Sounds

Mystery Pictures for Speech & Language Summer 6,900 words

Mini Speech Club Summer

Syllable Squeeze Multisyllabic Words for Speech Therapy

Interactive Smore Articulation Activity: Hands on speech therapy

Beach Hunt Interactive Articulation Sensory Tub Activity

Summer Later Developing Sounds: Articulation Games

Summer Early Developing Sounds: Articulation Games

Open Ended Games

Gone Camping FREEBIE Open Ended Board Game

FREEBIE No Print Pass the Prize Summer Edition

Summer Open Ended Games

Ready for Summer 3 games in 1

Lemonade Maker: Open Ended Reinforcemnt Game

All Around the Campground Game Board Set FREEBIE

Summer Open Ended Gameboards FREEBIE


Pronoun Fun with Rangers Rick & Susie FREEBIE

Speech Therapy Pronouns/Prepositions for Summer Grades Prek-1st

FREEBIE summer pronouns he, she, they, him, her, his, hers

Grammar Golf Grades K-8th

Summer People Sentences: 3rd Person Pronouns FREEBIE

Summer Complex Sentence Builder

Beach Grammar Activities for Speech Therapy Classrooms


Summer Time Grammar & Vocabulary Pack Grades Prek-2nd

Scoop Up A Delicious Story FREEBIE

Out In The Woods Cause & Effect Grades 1-5

Camping Out Categories Grades Prek-1st

Splash With Language Levels 1, 2, 3

BBQ Figurative Language

Summer Themed Preschool Speech & Language Pack

Summer Descriptive Sentence Fram FREEBIE

Fishy Guessing Similarities & Differences 2nd-5th

Summer Vocabulary Activities Grades Prek-K

Sailing Through Summer Speech Grades Prek-5th

That’s Fishy! Which Does Not Belong: Understanding Negatives & Associations FREEBIE Prek-1st

Summer speech FREEBIE: Gardening

Get Your Hamburger On-Visuals & Printables for Writing Intervention Grades 2nd-5th

Summer Vocabulary BINGO Grades Prek-2nd

Under the Sea Language Activities for Speech Therapy Grades K-7th

Summer Figurative Language Grades 3-8

Ice Cream Emotions- Feelings & Pragmatic Vocabulary Grades 4-8

Write-Say The Room Summer

Sweet Summer Speech & Language

Fun In The Sun: Beach Themed Speech & Language Activities

Summer Interactive Books

All Around the Campground Game Board Set

Buzzin’ True or False FREEBIE Grades 1st-4th

Summer Fun Language Grades 1st-6th

Speech Camp- Expressive Language Activities

No Print Splashing Into Language: Expressive & Receptive

Picnic Time Language

What Goes With Interactive No Print Categorization Associations

Camping Categories

Spring & Summer Stylist: Expressive/Receptive Language Activities Grades Prek-2nd

Say What? A Comprehension Activity Summer Edition Grades Prek-1st

Summer Print & Go Language Pack

Under The Sea: A Thematic Unit Grades Prek-K

Nonfiction Texts with English Language Arts Targets Spring/Summer Edition Grades K-5th

Baseball Themed Language Activities K-6th

Sunny Packet of Language Fun

Greetings From Summer Camp: Listening for Details

Flip Floppin’ Into Summer Interactive No Print

Fun in the Sun Language Activities

Camping with Questions Yes/No Wh-questions for Speech Therapy

Ocean Animals Facts: Receptive/Expressive Language Activities K-6th

Speech & Language BUNDLES

Soaking Up Summer With Speech & Language No Prep Summer Pack Grades K-4th

Two Scoops of Speech & Language: An Ice Cream Themed Activity Packet

Hear it, See it, Say it: Fun in the Sun Seek & Find

Hear it, See it, Say it: Let’s Go Camping

Ladybug Printable Speech & Language Activities FREEBIE

Summer Fun Pack for Speech & Language Therapy or classroom fun

Speech Therapy Oceans of Fun Bundle

Book Companions

The Rainbow Fish Speech & Language Companion Grades K-5th

The Rainbow Fish Phonemic Awareness Pack

Phonemic Awareness Activity for The Rainbow Fish FREEBIE

Lisa the Lifeguard- Interactive Story & Comprehension Activities

Over in the Meadow: A Book Companion

Story Companion- The Big Wide Mouthed Frog

Giraffes Can’t Dance Speech Therapy Book Companion

There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Shell: A Book Companion for Language

There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Shell Language Unit

Smiley Speech Therapy Book Companion

There was an old lady who swallowed a shell: Speech & Language Activities


Summer Craftivity Worksheets

Father’s Day Speech, Language & Articulation Themed Unit with crafts

Craftivity Vocabulary Activities Summer Theme

 Extension Activities for Home Practice

Summer Homework Packet for Speech & Language Therapy Grades Prek-5

Summer Worksheets HW Pack for Speech Therapy

Preschool Speech & Language Summer Homework Packet

Common Core Summer Packets for Speech & Language Grades k-5th

Summer Articulation Homework Packet

Summer Language Homework Packet

Summer Homework Calendars for Speech, Articulation, Language & Fluency

FREE Summer Speech Homework Calendars for Articulation

Print & Go Summer Camp Speech & Language Homework

FREE Summer Speech Homework Calendards for Language

A Summer of Speech & Language Calendars

Speech & Language HW for the Summer

Summer Preschool Speech & Language Packet: Learning Through Play

Classroom Decor

Summer Themed Classroom Decor: Bright Fun Edition

Summer SPEECh Welcome Posters FREEBIE

Behavior Management

Splish Splash Summer Themed Behavior Management Set

Do you have summer speech therapy activities that you love to use with your students? Leave a comment below or email me at, so I can add them to my stash!

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