Christmas Tree Craft for Speech Therapy

Christmas Tree Craft for Speech Therapy

In December, pulling out some festive activities with your speech therapy groups is fun. If your students celebrate Christmas and need mixed group holiday activities, you will love this Christmas tree craft for speech therapy. It’s easy to make and can be sent home as a functional decor that will remind your students to practice their speech and language skills.

If your students don’t celebrate Christmas, you can adapt this craft to be winter trees.

Amazon affiliate links are included in this blog post for your convenience. When you use my affiliate link, I earn a small commission.

Christmas Tree Craft Supplies You Need

Make mixed group planning easier in December with this Christmas tree craft for speech therapy!

To make this Christmas tree craft for speech therapy sessions, you will need the following supplies:

Cardstock (you can print on regular paper, but it will be a little lighter. For a sturdy tree, the cardstock works best)

Colored pencils or crayons

Dot markers (optional)

Scissors

Glue

String or ribbon if you want to put a hole punch and create an ornament

Christmas tree craft templates

Assembling the Christmas Tree Craft

To make your 3D Christmas tree craft, you must fold each tree in half with the ornament side touching each other. Then, you will add glue to one half of the Christmas tree and glue that to another half of a different tree. Once all sides of your tree are glued together, your Christmas tree craft can stand up independently.

Make mixed group planning easier in December with this Christmas tree craft for speech therapy!

How to Use the Christmas Tree Craft for Speech Therapy

When you print out the templates, you can either pre-cut the trees or have students do it.

Your students can practice their speech and language targets with the printouts in the first session and covering with magnetic chips or erasers on the stimulus items. For ideas using magnetic wands, this post has ideas for you!

Then, in the next session, have students color or use dot markers with their trees. As each child is coloring, you can work on their goals.

After everyone is finished coloring, you can help students assemble their crafts.

You can keep your Christmas trees in your room for warm-up practice or progress monitoring. Plus, you can send it home as homework for students to use for practice until Christmas!

Make a Speech Therapy Bulletin Board with Your Christmas Tree Craft

If you have a bulletin board area in the hallway or your room, you can glue their Christmas tree crafts to colorful construction paper and hang them on the wall.

Or, you can punch a hole at the top of the tree and tie string or ribbon to make an ornament that they can hang on their tree at home.

With the Christmas tree language templates, there are mini homework directions to send home to help parents know how to use the stimulus items at home.

Make mixed group planning easier in December with this Christmas tree craft for speech therapy!

Need more Themed Crafts to Use in Speech Therapy?

Make mixed group planning easier in December with this Christmas tree craft for speech therapy!

Using themed crafts can be a great way to switch things up in your mixed groups when you need a break from worksheets and flashcards.

And themed crafts can help you plan literacy-based lessons for small groups and co-teaching sessions. The Themed Therapy SLP membership provides low-prep-themed crafts and visual supports for those crafts. You can also check out these blog posts for more ideas:

 

Easy Christmas Crafts for Speech Therapy

Ideas for Winter Crafts to Use in Speech Therapy

Easy Summer Crafts for Speech Therapy

Spring Crafts for Speech Therapy

3 Easy Valentine’s Day Crafts for Speech Therapy

4 Squirrel Toys You Need for Speech Therapy

4 Squirrel Toys You Need for Speech Therapy

You are seriously missing out if you still need to plan a squirrel theme for your elementary caseload. Squirrels are the funniest creatures, and kids love talking about them.

This theme allows you to ditch your worksheets and easily target speech and language goals with toys and props. This blog post will teach you about four squirrel toys for speech therapy.

This blog post contains Amazon affiliate links which means when you use the link to purchase an item, I receive a small commission at no additional cost to you.

Squirrel Toys Speech Therapy Must-Haves

 Squirrel toy props for your speech therapy sessions that will increase engagement with your students!

Not only is the game Sneaky Snacky Squirrel for targeting speech sound goals, but it also has fabulous game pieces to add to sensory bins. In particular, this game is excellent for targeting s-blends. You can see all my favorite games for s-blends HERE.

The game itself provides opportunities for teaching colors, turn-taking, functional communication, commenting, and verb actions.

Plus, you can use the acorns to teach more, less, all, none, and for pretend play with squirrel figurines.

If you need a toy companion cheat sheet for this game, head to my store to snag the resource that gives you 45 cheat sheets for your most used toys and games.

Want to see how you can use a toy cheat sheet for your therapy groups? Try the bubbles toy cheat sheet for free in this blog post

Squirrel Dog Toys for Teaching Language Skills

One of my go-to places to find themed props is the dog section in stores or on Amazon.

There are always seasonal toys that can be used for your pretend play activities. Hands down, one of my favorite finds is the squirrel log dog toy.

You can target basic concepts, verb actions, answer yes/no questions, and grammar concepts, and hide other items inside the log. Put your acorns inside from sneaky snacky squirrel to work on plurals grammar markers, verbs (i.e., gather, find, carry, collect), and wh-questions.

For more ideas on where to find themed props, head to this blog post.

Squirrel toys speech therapy must-haves that will bring your sessions to life!

Join the Themed Therapy SLP Membership

If you are on the struggle bus with planning themed therapy for your Prek-5th grade caseload, let me take that off your plate!

You can use various printable and digital materials to plan a themed therapy unit without stress. When you join the annual membership, you can access over 24 themed units at once, like the squirrel theme!

Get the support you need to serve your students well.

Squirrel toys speech therapy must-haves that will bring your sessions to life!
Squirrel toys speech therapy must-haves that will bring your sessions to life!
Squirrel toys speech therapy must-haves that will bring your sessions to life!
Squirrel toys speech therapy must-haves that will bring your sessions to life!

Squirrel Figurines for Pretend Play and Sensory Bins

Squirrel toys speech therapy must-haves that will bring your sessions to life!

Another unexpected place to find mini-themed figurines is cake decorating store sections. I found these squirrel figurines on Amazon and knew they would be perfect for a sensory bin and play sets. If you own a treehouse toy or play house, check out how to make a squirrel takeover for play-based speech therapy in this blog post.

Squirrel Toy Speech Therapy Must-Have for High Trials

When working on speech sound goals, you always need props or activities that help make practice trials more fun. Use this squirrel ball popper to hit acorns with points you draw on the whiteboard. You can have students earn the balls after practicing their words several times. Set the flashcards for your language goals and have students try to hit a flashcard to practice.

Squirrel toys speech therapy must-haves that will bring your sessions to life!

What Squirrel Toys Have You Found for Your Caseload?

Squirrel toys speech therapy must-haves that will bring your sessions to life!

Have you found any fun squirrel toys you use with your elementary caseload? If so, share your finds in the comments of the blog post. For more squirrel lesson plan ideas, head to this blog post.

Squirrel Play-Based Speech Therapy Idea!

Squirrel Play-Based Speech Therapy Idea!

One of the MOST fun themes ever includes squirrels! During the fall season, your students will see squirrels scampering about, darting, and scurrying around outside anywhere there are trees or plants.

They are some of the silliest creatures to watch, so why not incorporate squirrels into your play-based speech therapy sessions?

I want to share a fun squirrel play-based speech therapy activity that you can pair with your favorite squirrel book!

Many of my sessions are structured with a book and then a play-based activity to allow for direct teaching, incorporating literacy, and allowing the child to explore concepts while playing.

You will find Amazon affiliate links for your convenience in this blog post. When you use these links, I earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.

What You Need For The Squirrel Play-Based Speech Therapy Activity

Change things up in  your traditional speech therapy sessions by using this squirrel play-based speech therapy activity!

To have your squirrel take over, you need any toy set, but the one that would be best is the treehouse toy set from Fisher-Price. You can also use this fun treehouse from Calico Critters or Li’l Woodzeez

You need these mini squirrel figurines, and if you want verb and vocabulary flashcards related to squirrels, you can find those in the Themed Therapy SLP membership. The squirrel theme is part of the September month, but when you get an annual subscription, you have access to all the themes throughout the year, so you can pick the theme you need for your caseload!

Goals to Target with the Squirrel Play Therapy Activity

You can hide different verb and vocabulary flashcards throughout the play set when doing your squirrel takeaway.

Have your squirrels gather all the cards that are hidden around the set. As your student’s squirrels find cards, you can target speech and language goals.

You can also work on verb actions for the squirrels, target pretend play schemes such as preparing for winter, or work on basic concepts with the squirrels.

With your students working on speech sounds, give them words to practice related to squirrels that have their sounds. Or, have some sound-loaded phrases to use while playing.

Change things up in  your traditional speech therapy sessions by using this squirrel play-based speech therapy activity!

For example, if you are working on s-blends, you can naturally target scamper, scurry, squirrel or snack. For students working on /l/, you can have them say “look” every time they find a squirrel or flashcard.

Or, if the squirrels are searching for acorns and nuts, they can “munch” or “chew.”

How would you use this squirrel-themed play-based speech therapy activity to cover goals on your caseload?

Need more Squirrel Speech Therapy Ideas?

Change things up in  your traditional speech therapy sessions by using this squirrel play-based speech therapy activity!

If you are sold on using a squirrel theme with your entire caseload, you need to check out this blog post for more ideas!

This is a very underrated theme because every time I use it, kids LOVE it. To help you rock a squirrel theme longer than a week, check out this squirrel language lesson plan guide in my store!

You can also find a sneaky snacky squirrel toy cheat sheet in this resource

5 Fall Language Therapy Activities for SLPs

5 Fall Language Therapy Activities for SLPs

When implementing a theme-based approach, you want to ensure your speech therapy materials and activities include the theme’s vocabulary.

That’s why today, in this blog post, I will share 5 Fall language activities you can do that incorporate fall-themed vocabulary words and concepts.

Mixed Group Fall Language Therapy Activity

Learn about 5 fall language therapy activities you can use with your mixed groups in this blog post.

Sequencing with fall activities is a great way to work on various language goals.

You can cover grammar, vocabulary, comprehension, description, and more! This research article found that when therapy focused on a broad range of language skills, students reading comprehension improved.

Working on sequencing the steps for raking leaves, carving a pumpkin, making an apple pie, or a squirrel collecting acorns for the winter, you can work on lots of different language concepts.

You can even show your students YouTube videos with the process for these fall activities. And, if you want digital Boom Cards to work on fall sequencing, check out these different fall-themed sets in my TPT store.

Lervåg, A. , Hulme, C. and Melby‐Lervåg, M. (2017). Unpicking the developmental relationship between oral language skills and reading comprehension: It’s simple, but complex. Child Development. Advance online publication. doi:10.1111/cdev.12861

Work on Comparing and Contrasting with Fall Vocabulary

If you ask classroom teachers what skills they are working on in language arts, one skill that they often share they are teaching is comparison.

Teaching your students how to feature match to find similarities and differences will help them analyze characters from stories and similar items.

You can work on the compare/contrast skill using fall-themed vocabulary. Check out the word lists at Words To Use for some ideas. If you want to avoid thinking of similar items, grab these compare/contrast cards for fall in my TPT store.

Want a free graphic organizer for comparing and contrasting? Grab this one in my store!

Learn about 5 fall language therapy activities you can use with your mixed groups in this blog post.

Use Fall Photos to Build Inferencing Skills

Learn about 5 fall language therapy activities you can use with your mixed groups in this blog post.

You can cover many language goals using real photos from a theme, so why not use fall-related images to target inferencing skills?

One of the main benefits of a theme-based approach is that while you are working on the theme’s concepts, you can build background knowledge simultaneously.

While asking your student’s inferencing questions, you can also help build schema around the fall season. To find fall-themed photos, you can use Pixabay, Google Photos (don’t post this on the internet because you could be violating copyright), or any free, open-source photo site. But, if you want to save time, you can use the fall inferencing photos ready to go with questions and thought bubbles. 

Teach Comprehension With Short Stories

Often we have students on our caseloads with various language needs who struggle with comprehension because vocabulary and syntax are significant areas of need. On top of that, retaining all the components of a story can be difficult if the text is long.

So, I like having short stories to help break down the wh-questions, help build vocabulary, and work on retelling while also targeting syntax.

To help me follow a theme-based approach, I have made fall-themed short stories with fall concepts embedded in the story.

You can find my scaffolded fall short stories in my Themed Therapy SLP membership and the fall sequencing short stories. If you are still deciding whether to try out the membership, I also have a set of fall-scaffolded short stories in my TPT store.

Build Vocabulary with Fall Sensory Bins

Making a fall-themed sensory bin can be a great way to reinforce vocabulary while keeping your students engaged during the session.

A typical therapy plan for me is using a fall-themed book and pairing it with a sensory bin.

You can provide direct teaching with the book and allow the child to explore and use the fall sensory bin to target goals. If you need a fall-themed sensory bin companion, I have this set in my store!

Plus, I have sensory bin cheat sheets in the Themed Therapy SLP membership. For more fall-themed sensory bin ideas, check out this post.

What Fall Language Activities Do You Plan With Your Students?

Do you have any fall language activities that are a big hit with your students? How do you plan for your language goals using a fall theme? Share any books, websites, or resources you use for your speech therapy sessions in the comments. For more fall-themed therapy ideas, check out these blog posts.

 

Leaves Preschool Activities – Hands on Ideas for SLPs

Leaves Preschool Activities – Hands on Ideas for SLPs

Working with preschool-aged students who need some engaging leaves preschool activities?

Well, you came to the right blog post!

When working with the younger crew, we want to find ways to spark their curiosity, and most often, that means ditching the traditional drill tasks and pulling out hands-on activities.

DIY Falling Leaves Hands-On Activity

Easy leaves preschool activities to use in your play-based speech therapy sessions!

To work on labeling the colors of the trees and the essential concept word pair on and off, make this DIY falling leaves hands-on activity. Amazon affiliate links are provided for your convenience.

You need the following supplies:

Colored cardstock
Jumbo popsicle sticks
Velcro dots
Fall colored pom pom balls
Pincher tool (optional)
Styrofoam square (get from packaging, or you can order some here.)

Your students can work on putting leaves on and taking them off and target the verbs put, fall, drop, pick, and gather. Naturally, use this to get high trials by having your students practice their speech targets for each pom pom ball they put on or take off the tree.

How would you use this DIY leaves activity? Share in the comments of the blog post.

Leaves Preschool Activities for Pretend Play

You can create a dramatic play activity for kids to pretend to pick up fallen leaves off the ground. Buy fake leaves, a basket or container, and a plastic rake. Your students can work on sequencing the steps for raking the leaves, targeted verbs, vocabulary, and answering “who” questions. For example, you can have students take turns raking leaves and ask, “Who has the rake?” 

Leaves preschool activities that will keep your students engaged during your speech therapy sessions.
Leaves preschool activities that will keep your students engaged during your speech therapy sessions.

Here is a list of other variations to do with the leaf raking activity:

 

  • Have a race to see how long it takes to rake the leaves
  • Throw some leaves in the air and see how many they can catch with a basket. The number of leaves is the number of words the child has to practice.
  • Teach students vocabulary such as collect, toss, pile, pick, dump, fall, gather, carry, drag, scoop
  • Add painter’s tape or a blanket on the ground. Have your students try to rake the leaves onto the blanket. When all the leaves are on the blanket, they can try to fold the blanket and then dump the leaves into a container. You can problem solve if leaves fall out or if the blanket is too big, how to ask for help. 

Movement Activity With Leaves

Cut up colored construction paper into the form of a leaf. You can put different numbers, directions, verbs, or any speech or language target. Hide the leaves around your room. Tell your students that leaves have fallen off the tree around your room. Carry a container while students find the leaves. You can work on basic concept clues, and then when they see the leaf, they can practice their speech sound the number on the leaf.

What Leaves Preschool Activities Do You Use With Your Students?

If you have any fun leaves preschool activities you do in your speech therapy sessions, share them in the comments. If you need more fall-themed therapy ideas, check out these blog posts:

Preschool Leaf Lesson Plan for Co-Teaching

Engaging Fall Themed Speech and Language Activities

Fall Sensory Bin Ideas to Make Therapy Fun!

10 Fall Themed Sensory Bin Fillers

Preschool Leaf Lesson Plan for Co-Teaching

Preschool Leaf Lesson Plan for Co-Teaching

Working with the Prek-2nd grade population can be hard to plan your co-teaching lessons because there are a LOT of goals to juggle. That’s why you can format your themed co-teaching sessions in a way that gets the adults in the room to participate. Check out this blog post for ideas on structuring your push-in or co-teaching lessons.

Today, I wanted to help you with a leaves preschool lesson plan that you can adapt for small groups and your whole class lessons.

Although the leaves lesson plan is for your preschool-aged students, you can also adapt the activities with K-2 grade, especially with your self-contained classrooms.

Books for Your Leaves Preschool Lesson Plan

Have a preschool leaf lesson plan for your small groups and whole class speech therapy sessions!

On the carpet, you will want to do a leaf-themed book. Here are some of my favorites (Amazon affiliate links are provided for your convenience):

We’re Going on a Leaf Hunt by Steve Metzger (has repetitive text)
Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf by Lois Ehlert
Leaves by David Ezra Stein
There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed Some Leaves by Lucille Colandro

As you read the leaf book, pair verbs with iconic gestures to help increase engagement. An iconic gesture is a movement that resembles the word.

Visual supports for language and story retelling goals are super handy in your sessions. I created this easy-to-prep story retell visuals resource for the old lady series. You have a printable or digital option! Check it out HERE.

Themed Therapy SLP Membership Makes Planning Lessons Easier

When planning themed therapy activities for your Prek-5th grade caseload, overwhelm immediately sets in as you try to find engaging materials to use with your students.

You either become burnt out trying to prepare lessons or feel lost with how to cover all the speech and language goals.

To make themed therapy planning easier, join the Themed Therapy SLP membership. We take lesson planning off your plate so you can enjoy doing therapy. Check out the October months with a fall, spider, and pumpkin theme for your elementary caseload. 

Movement Activities for the Carpet Time

Don't stress about planning a preschool leaf lesson plan for your speech therapy groups! This one is done for y ou.

If you co-teach in a classroom with a SMARTboard, you can do a leaf song. Here are a few fun songs:

Season Song for Kids by The Learning Station
The Leaves on the Trees by The Kiboomers
Why Do Leaves Change Color by Super Simple Songs
Autumn Leaves are Falling Down by The Kiboomers

Check out this video from Miss Nina for some movement ideas to use with the Autumn Leaves are Falling Down.

During carpet time, you can also play Simon Says fall-themed verb charades.

Station Activities for Your Leaves Preschool Lesson Plan

When co-teaching, you want to utilize all the adults in the room to maximize small group instruction.

If you have instructional aides, you can break students into three groups and have one to two teachers as floater teachers.

Otherwise, you can do one tabletop activity and have students at tables with similar goals, students who get along or based on levels of scaffolding.

Here are three leaf-themed language activities you can plan:

Make a leaf sensory bin and throw in your favorite mini trinkets for students to find under the leaves. You can add a mini rake to make it feel like you are raking leaves. I tend to put mini trinkets with my students’ speech sounds related to their language goals. You can read more about dinkydoodads on the blog HERE.

Another variation to this bin is putting fall-themed vocabulary words hidden in the leaves and going on an “I spy” hunt. The fall vocabulary printables are included in the fall-themed push-in language lesson plan guides.

At another station, students can make a falling leaves craft. It’s super easy to prep, and you can do it with any craft supplies you have on hand. You can do it with pieces of construction paper, tissue paper, or paint with Q-tip. If you love easy prep crafts, I have a blog post specifically with fall ideas!

Gather some leaves outside at your home or school and use them to make a leaf rub with crayons. You can also use the leaves to discuss attributes such as color, size, texture, shape, function, etc. With a ruler, you can talk about length, work on quantity of more, less, or equal, and explain why leaves fall off trees during the fall season. 

Want more themed co-teaching lesson plan ideas?

I often share co-teaching lesson plans on my Instagram @thedabblingspeechie

You can look at the highlight reel to find the most seasonal ones!
And if you need some more themed lesson plan ideas, here are a few that you can check out:

Apple Theme Preschool Co-Teaching Lesson Plan

All About Me – Likes and Dislikes

Sound Push-In Lesson Plan

SLP Winter Survival Kit Waitlist

winter-themed materials

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