When it comes to digital speech therapy organization most SLPs struggle with how to keep track of their speech therapy materials. It’s hard to organize materials digitally if technology isn’t your strong suit too!
If you find yourself having 100 internet browser tabs open with all your activities learning how to digitally organize your materials will help curb that!
Today, I wanted to share some tips on how you can streamline your digital speech therapy organization for keeping track of your theme-based materials. For more info about organizing themed printable materials, check out this POST. I also share LOTS of ideas in this FREE Themed Therapy SLP Facebook group. Come join the group and stay inspired by implementing themed therapy.
How to Create Folders in Google Drive
When organizing your themed materials, you want to create folders for your themes. You can create folders on your computer or a cloud storage solution such as Dropbox or Google Drive. I have found that Google Drive is the easiest to use because I can access it from any computer.
My biggest tip for creating folders is putting a number before labeling the folder so that your most important folders are the first to show up in your Google Drive.
I typically make one general folder for themes and then make sub-folders for all the types of themes I have speech therapy materials for students. You can check out the YouTube video below to see how to add a folder in your Google Drive.
Use Google Slides to Link Your PDFs and Websites
With a Google Slide themed template, you can link YouTube videos, books from GetEpic or YouTube, websites you use for the theme such as ABCYA.com, as well as linking your Boom Cards and other games from the internet.
What’s even cooler is that you can link your PDFs from your Google Drive folders to your themed Google Slides lesson plan cheat sheet.
Whether you do teletherapy or like to use a mix of digital and printable activities, you will easily be able to find what you need for therapy.
My biggest tip for organizing your themes is to do it as you are implementing the theme. All the websites and activities are fresh in your mind and you can slowly add videos and PDFs that you like to use. It may feel cumbersome to link all the things, but the following school year you will have an organized themed unit of materials to use with the majority of your caseload.
Need a FREE Themed Google Slide Planner?
You can watch the YouTube video above to get all the techy tips for adding PDFs, websites, and YouTube videos to the themed therapy Google Slides planner. If you want this free version, type in your email HERE or signup in the box. You will be asked to make a ‘copy’ of the Google Slide template and it will automatically be added to your Google Drive. That is your master copy. Rename it to something that is easy for you to search for in your Google Drive.
If you want more Google apps techy tips, I have a LOT of videos to help you navigate technology (you can do it!)
Planning by themes has helped me cover more goals with my caseload. It can help you streamline planning and students can benefit from a themed-based approach. To learn more about themes, I have several podcast episodes and blog posts with themed ideas. Check it out HERE.
When it comes to treating students with speech sound disorders, I like to have all my tools in one spot. Having an on-the-go container with my articulation materials together allows me to easily grab what I need during a small group or when I am working with a student in a hallway for quick articulation.
I find with articulation organization that having everything in one spot saves me time with putting materials away, transporting materials to classrooms or schools and cuts down my lesson planning time. Today, I wanted to show you how you can make an articulation organization storage container to keep all your speech therapy materials together for the school year.
Where to Find Articulation Organization Storage Bins
When it comes to organizing a lot of random materials that need to stay together, I found that using storage bins that have latches on the tops are really helpful. You don’t want to be carrying materials and drop the container with the lid popping off.
If you need a storage box that can keep your small visuals and reinforcer materials, then the smaller box works well! For SLPs that want to be able to keep some folders, visuals, reinforcers and task card type materials, then the larger 14.5 quart box would be a good investment.
The smaller box would probably store better, but the larger container would help you have materials for multiple sounds to grab when you needed it for speech sessions.
Articulation Organization Container Tip!
The main reason that the Recollections storage bins are my favorite are because of the trays that fit perfectly in the container!
This allows you to keep mini items such as mini erasers, wind-up toys, and magnetic chips (Amazon Affiliate links are included) organized in their own compartment. The only drawback is that it does take up space in the bin, so you have to lay items flat on the bottom in order to fit tasks cards and tools for speech sound disorder therapy.
Favorite Items to Store for Getting High Trials
As clinicians, we know that with many speech sound disorders, students need to get high trials to help achieve mastery of the sound and carryover into conversation. Whether you are using a minimal pairs approach, cycles, traditional, etc. you want your students to practice a LOT in a session.
In order to help make that process a little more motivating and productive, having tools to use for those high trials is key to therapy success. So, I like to have a variety of materials available to switch out if the child isn’t like something that I picked for the day.
Here are some items I love to have in my storage bins for high trials in speech therapy (Amazon Affiliate Links):
For more ideas on how to get high trials, you can check out this blog post HERE. I even have scored with getting high trials using paper plates!
Materials You Can Store in Your Articulation Storage Container
With the larger storage box, you can store your iPad and task card type materials. Having visual sentence strips for students working at the phrase level is great to have on hand. You can use these ones in my store that come as printable and digital options.
You can store speech sound cue cards from Bjorem Speech. With the larger 14.5 quart container, you can even store a slant stand to have a mirror and dry erase board on the go. They also have these cool double-sided clips that you can show minimal pair cards or sound cues. Here are some other cool ways you can use these clips!
I found an 8-inch abacus that fits in the larger storage container and is great for getting those high trials quickly. Having tools like this pair really well with my No Print and Printable Articulation Flipbooks.
When you have a lot of students working on the same articulation sound or phonological process, you can make speech folders for those sounds and store them in the larger bin.
I found that this helps me with planning therapy for several sessions because I can grab the stimulus items, homework sheets, visual reminders, or self awareness rating visuals all together. You can read more about setting these up HERE.
What would you store in your articulation organization storage bin? I would love to know what tools and materials you have found helpful for your students. Let me know if you have any questions about setting up your articulation system in the comments.
Raise your hand if you start the year off strong with organization, and by the end of September you find yourself scouring through laundry piles of resources and worksheets. I know I can’t be the only one out there! I decided to get serious about organizing my themed therapy materials using a system that would last the whole school year. Here are some ways you can organize themed therapy materials so you don’t have to constantly find your self thinking “I swear I put that articulation packet in this folder…..”
Organize Themed Therapy Materials Using a Crate
One thing I invested in is these file storage crates.They are so easy to find and such a game changer.You can find these file storage crates at Staples, Target, Walmart, or Amazon. As you can see in the picture, I label each file folder with my themes. When I’m looking for a particular themed activity, I’ll know exactly where to look in the crate which saves me a ton of time. This is especially helpful for organizing themed therapy materials for my whole classroom or push-in activities. When I first started organizing with crates, I quickly realized the file folders were essential! Without them, my materials turned into another pile, but this time they were in a crate instead of my desk!
Use Zip Pouches to Organize Themed Therapy Materials
Along with the crates, I also love to use these zip or pocket pouches. Like the crates, they are super easy to find and a great organizational investment. These zip pouches are perfect for those themed activities that require a lot of components. For example, crafts, core word squares, books, and sentence strips. It’s super easy to keep all of the themed components in one place with these pouches. They are also very quick to grab and easy to carry from class to class.
A quick tip: if you are interested in buying these pouches, I would recommend going for more durable, plastic ones. These help keep your materials from bending or creasing, and they don’t “flop” as much for easier storage.
Organize Your Story Themed Materials in a Scrapbook Box
Scrapbook boxes are a great tool to organize themed materials and lesson plans. These boxes are wide and deep enough to store your theme related books and the companion activities. I love these scrapbook boxes because I can use them to store the books I want, the activities, any pouches I have for my loose cards and materials, craft examples I want to use, and all of my visual supports. They are so easy to label, grab, use, and reorganize at the end of my day. I’ve cut down so much time on my planning and organizing once I started using these scrapbook boxes.
Check out my video on Facebook or Instagram to see what my scrapbook box and pouch organizational systems look like using an ocean theme!
Use Bags and Bins to Keep Sensory Bins Neat
One thing I love to incorporate into my therapy are themed sensory bins. However, these sensory bins and the loose materials I put in them can get super messy and time consuming to organize. Using gallon-sized baggies and a storage bin has helped keep my sensory bin materials neat. First, I store the loose cards or small toys I’ll be using in my sensory bin in a gallon-sized zip lock baggie. Then, I store the “sensory” materials in their own zip lock baggies as well. I place all of these baggies in a storage bin. Then, when it’s time to assemble my sensory bin, I can simply pick the therapy targets/cards/toys I need, the sensory material I want to use, and place them all in my sensory bin.
Recently, I polled the SLPs that follow me on Instagram to see how many of us make individual student folders for our caseloads. It was a pretty even 50/50 split of speech pathologists that do make individual folders and those that don’t.
I personally do not make individual speech folders for each child on my caseload. I use a giant therapy binder that has tabs for each child on my caseload. If I cover two schools, then I store a therapy binder at each school.
Setting Up Articulation Speech Folders
For each student, I store their therapy logs, a communication log, their IEP-at-a-glance, and specialized data sheets as needed. Typically, I just flip back and forth between students to keep everything documented.
However, I always have certain students that I service in a quick artic model, or I want to have some specialized visuals organized for my artic students to use when running mixed groups. In these circumstances, I will make an articulation speech folder for the individual student or the particular sound/phonological process. Today, I am going to share how you can set up your own articulation speech folders to help you streamline your therapy planning process.
Why I Make Articulation Speech Folders
Let’s face it. We have limited time for planning therapy. And sometimes we are doing our quick artic in the hallways or targeting articulation goals with mixed groups. It is hard for me to keep visuals, homework sheets, flash cards, etc. organized for my articulation students. Having all of the tools I may need in one speech folder helps me to be prepared for therapy. Planning therapy is less stressful because I can grab the folder knowing that everything I need is ready to use.
Or, if I have 3-4 students working on a certain phonological process, I can make one folder for that process and have all the speech materials I need to remediate that process. The only other thing I may need to grab is a toy, a game, or a manipulative to use with all the tools in the speech folder.
Materials to Make Articulation Speech Folders
To make your speech folder, you do need some organizational materials to make it work. I am going to show you what I do, but feel free to adapt for your caseload. Amazon affiliate links are included for your convenience.
What other office supplies have you found helpful to include in your student’s speech folders? Share in the comments!
What to Include in Your Articulation Speech Folder
When setting up your articulation speech folder, you want to have an idea of where the child is performing with learning his/her sound. If the child is at the syllable level, then you can include materials and visuals for that level, as well as add in materials for the word and phrase level.
This allows you to have extra materials ready in the event that the student progresses quicker than you expected. You will be ready to adapt the therapy session easily without racking your brain on what to do next.
Here are some helpful things to include in your speech folder:
Homework forms that help track if the student is practicing at home. I use these ones from Kiwi Speech (FREE printable). For your students that you are creating home programs, you can have homework sheets in this folder ahead of time, so you can easily plan and track homework assignments. This is a free homework sheet once students get to the carryover level in my STORE.
Please share any other forms, visuals, or tools you would add to your articulation speech folders in the comments! You can also tag me on instagram @thedabblingspeechie with your articulation speech folder setup.
Blog Posts To Help You Plan Articulation Therapy
As busy SLPs, it is easy to struggle with ideas on how to increase repetitions or keep your students motivated with articulation practice. Here are some blog posts with ideas to make your articulation therapy productive and fun:
Half the battle of lesson planning for therapy is actually knowing where your materials are located–right? I know when I have a specific home for my materials, it is easier to remember what my options are for therapy. Do you have a “put it in a pile” place in your speech room? Guilty as charged.
I do have a designated area for my “pile” so that when I don’t have time to organize, I can keep the chaos contained to one spot. Above is a picture of my “needs to be shredded pile”. However, I can only live in organized chaos for a short period of time. When my materials are organized, it reduces extra brain energy spent worrying about future lesson planning. If a lesson isn’t going as planned, I can easily grab different materials because I know where they are in my room. Today, I wanted to share some tips and supplies for organizing your speech materials. (Amazon Affiliate links are included in this blog post.)
Organize Your Speech Materials In Batched Chunks
In the real SLP world, you don’t have extra hours in the day just to organize. And, when you have a multitude of disorganized spaces, it is hard to know which one to tackle first. I have found some success with picking one thing I want to organize. Then, I work on that one task until it is finished. Best solution for getting it done? Blocking out time on my schedule for organizational tasks. My next best solution, stop trying to do 3 projects at once.
For example, I wanted to organize my craft materials so, I made a “to do” list and blocked out when I was going to tackle each task. First task: get the file bin (order on Amazon or schedule the day you are going to go to Target or Walmart to get the bin). Plan out when you are going to get any other supplies needed like page protectors, hanging file folders, etc. Then, I made a list of what I would want to keep in the bin. I wanted to store the craft template, have some card stock stored in there, and pre-prepped artic and language stimulus cards (I use my any craft companion printables), so I could have some things prepped if I want to do a last-minute craft.
Do One Organizational Project At A Time
The rest of the week, I schedule any small open chunks of time to devote to my organizing project. If you schedule something in all your open time spots, you will remember to do them. So, I schedule my day with everything I do, such when I have to attend an IEP meeting, progress monitor a student, call a parent, write therapy logs, do medicaid billing, make copies of data sheets, organize visual supports, etc.
Tips For Organizing Themed or Skill-Based Materials
For themed therapy, a lot of SLPs plan their lessons around a book or theme. I found that storing the materials all together helped me prevent losing them, and I knew exactly where I could access the resources. If you have lessons that target skill-based materials, you can keep them all together as well. I highly recommend labeling what is inside your bins/containers/folders. Your brain will thank you later!
Storage Solutions For Themed & Skilled Based Materials In One Place
Expanding file folders are perfect for the traveling SLP or the SLP that goes into the classroom a lot. Similar materials that you may need for a mixed group won’t get lost in a file folder. You can stick most books inside, along with all the extension activities you planned. My seasonal grammar and vocabulary activities easily fit in these file folders. I can fit most of my seasonal grammar and vocabulary activities in one folder, and store on my shelf. You will not lose all the task cards, lesson plan cheat sheets or visual supports that go with the lesson.
I also found plastic poly files on Amazon and some at the Dollar Tree that clip shut. If you have book companion materials or several speech or language activities that you transport for push-in language support, these folders help keep all the pieces together.
Some books even fit inside these folders. I put all my themed language lessons that I use for push-in and pull-out groups. When planning push-in lessons, I usually pick a book or theme. Then, I plan many different speech and language activities around the book or theme. So, in order to keep all the little parts together, I can put them in one folder.
If you have small task cards, jewelry boxes or scrapbook boxes can be great for storing materials. Small task cards or PECS icons work really well with these containers.
An Easy Organization Solution For The Busy SLP
If you have NO time to maintain an elaborate organizational system, or–let’s be real–no money right now to invest in organizational supplies, using a file crate to keep the month’s lessons organized is great solution.
I grab all the books I may want to use for the month and put them inside. Then, I out the materials I will be using to target goals for students during the month. Having this crate with file folders helps you to clean up your materials quickly at the end of the day. This method eliminates keeping things in piles or shoving it back in your therapy closet. After I am finished with the materials for the month, I put them back in my giant storage bins or in my therapy closet.
Put All Similar Themes Or Skills In The Same Bin
This large bin stores all of my sensory bin materials. I put everything in plastic bags or tiny containers. To make things easy, I keep my bin fillers, toy materials and companion materials in this bin. If you are looking for more sensory bin ideas, check out this page for sensory bin inspiration.
I have also used large bins for storing language, social skill and articulation materials. When I need some new materials, I take out what I need from my bin. This organization method will help you if you have a small space. It is also helpful for SLPs that need to see what materials they have available.
Organize Your Speech Materials With Binders
Binders are an easy way to store materials. You can keep similar resources in one binder, have fun tabs on the outside so you can easily find the binder you need, and they fit nicely on bookshelves.
I also use binders to keep a lot of similar resources together using page protectors.
For resources that have stimulus items, lesson plan cheat sheets and visual supports, I will organize them by keeping them in binders. My Seasonal Sensory Bin Companions store well in binders. I can keep the lesson plan sheets, data collection sheets, and stimulus items for all the different goals in one place. I use tabs to separate the different seasons, so I can quickly flip to the season I need.
Organize Your Speech Materials In the Way That Works Best For You
The best place to get more organized is to identify the place in your office that always feels disorganized. The second thing you need to do is figure out what will work best for you. If you are a traveling SLP, expanding folders may be great for keeping multiple materials in one place. The expanding folders have a zipper, so materials can’t fly out. Or if you have great bookshelves in your room, using binders to keep your materials organized will help you. The crate is a great organization option for you if you just don’t have the time or energy to invest in re-vamping your material storage.
How Do You Organize Your Speech Materials?
Where are all of my SLP organizational ladies and gents? I would love to know your genius organizational hacks! Share an organizational tip in the comment. Or, send me a picture of your organizational system at email@example.com Of course, you can always share your organized speech room on instagram and tag me @thedabblingspeechie. I would love to see the amazing solutions you use to keep your speech room pile-free.
Want more ways to stay organized in your speech room? Check out more tips in this blog post HERE. Also, if those first few months back to school have you super overwhelmed, I have a FREE checklist and IEP monthly calendar to help keep you organized that you can access HERE. Check them out!
There are certain office supplies SLPs need to rock the school year. I like office supplies that help me do my job better or reduce stress. Today, I am going to share office supplies that SLPs will use to feel prepared for therapy because you will be more organized. In turn, when you are more organized, you will use less energy stressing and more positive energy focused on your students. Amazon affiliate links are provided for your convenience.
Here is my ultimate speech therapy office supplies must-have list.
Office Supplies SLPs Need To Keep Them Organized
10 Drawer Organizer Cart (Amazon affiliate link) – For this type B+ SLP, I like office supplies that let me shove, I mean–place, my stuff, so my room looks more organized.
You can get a 10 Drawer Organizer Cart from Amazon, Michael’s or Walmart. Sometimes Michael’s has a really good deal on them. I like these rolling carts because it is light weight (which means it is easy to transport when your room gets moved). There are 10 trays which allow you to organize by group, treatment area, or types of “to do”s. For example, you could have a tray for “needs to laminate”, “need to cut out”, etc.
Binder Rings (Amazon affiliate link) – These binder rings help me stay organized with visuals. I have a binder ring filled with visuals that I keep on my lanyard, so I have access to those visuals wherever I go on campus. I also like having binder rings to keep similar task cards, visuals or activities all in one place.
You can keep all your visuals and resources on binder rings. Then, you can hang them near your therapy desk on the wall with push pins or hooks, so you can easily grab them. I noticed that when I had my materials near me in sight, I remembered to grab them when needed.
My Visual Sentence Starter Strips hang on the side of my cabinet with these amazing magnetic hooks. These hooks help organize my most used materials. You can easily grab them on the spot or put them away quickly. If you have metal cabinets in your room, then I highly recommend them.
Page Protectors (Amazon affiliate link) -These have saved me a ton of time for prepping lessons. I don’t have to go to the copier as often because I place worksheets inside and use with a dry erase marker.
Thinking Bubble Post Its (Amazon affiliate link) – These are great when I want to work on social inferencing and perspective taking. Use these with photos or put them in books as a visual cue that the person is having a thought. If you want to work on conversation skills or what the person may say next, the talking bubble post its are awesome too.
Electronic Digital Tally Counters (Amazon affiliate link) – These are amazing for getting kids to do more repetitions for articulation. You can also use them for collecting data during instruction. I originally learned about this tool from SLP Talk With Desiree and found that I love them! You can also use them to track dysfluencies, correct vs incorrect responses (see Desiree’s post for her tips), counting artic reps and for tracking on task/off task behaviors.
An Office Supply That Will Save You Time When Prepping Materials & Communication Books
Velcro dots (Amazon affiliate link) – Velcro dots have saved me hours! I no longer have to cut the velcro strips into tiny pieces. It has also saved my scissors from getting that sticky goop build up. You know what I’m talking about!
Any time I want to turn something into a sorting activity, I can use the velcro dots to make the activity reusable. Communication books, interactive books and file folder activities need velcro, so these dots are worth the investment for the time you save.
Speech Therapy Office Supplies To Preserve Your Materials
Laminator and laminating sheets – I have been moving away from laminating EVERYTHING in my speech room. It just takes too much time. I tend to laminate items that I know I will use over and over again and want to preserve them.
The rest, I just use without that plastic protective layer. Check out my blog post HERE for laminating deals that I have found.
What Office Supplies Help You Rock The School Year?
If you need more functional ways to organize your materials, you can read my blog post HERE. What office supplies do you think SLPs need to rock the school year? Share in the comments. I would love to add more resources that help me stay organized and do a good job. When I feel organized, I know my positive energy will be focused on my students.
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