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

Apple Sensory Bin Ideas for Early Elementary

Apple Sensory Bin Ideas for Early Elementary

During the fall season, a great theme to plan for your speech therapy caseload is an apple theme!

Your students can relate to apples because they are snacking on them, baking with them, and enjoying sweet drinks like apple cider!

Today, I will share all my best tips and ideas for making an apple sensory bin. Using a sensory bin after reading an apple-themed book can be a great way to keep your students engaged while also working on vocabulary from the theme.

Apple Sensory Bin Filler Ideas

Apple sensory bin ideas for your speech therapy caseload!

Here are some of my favorite apple sensory bin fillers (Amazon affiliate links):

Shredded red or green paper
Red or green pom poms
Dyed dry pasta red or green

Must-Have Apple Materials for Your Bin

One of my favorite finds is these plastic apples. You can add them to a sensory bin, set them up as a dramatic play apple stand, or hide them around your speech room. I love that I can use my apple-themed verb and vocabulary set from the Themed Therapy SLP membership by printing four to a page. Check out a demo on my Instagram.

Need some apples to throw in your bin? Use these fake apples from Michaels. They are just the right size to be thrown into a sensory bin!

To make an apple orchard, you need toilet paper rolls or Dixie cups. You can see more on Instagram. Cut slits on both sides, print out some apple trees, and slide the trees onto the toilet paper roll. You can then add those to your bins. If you need printables for apple trees, the ones in the picture are from the Themed Therapy SLP membership.

Get inspired with apple sensory bin ideas for speech therapy!

Apple-Themed Speech Therapy Activities for Prek-5th Grade

If you don’t want to stress about planning themed therapy, join the Themed Therapy SLP membership. It’s designed to take lesson planning off your plate so you can enjoy your speech therapy sessions. Join here!

How To Use These Apple Sensory Bins in Speech Therapy

Easy apple sensory bin ideas for speech therapy!

One of the BEST ways to use themed sensory bins is to pair them with a book. You can reinforce all the vocabulary or use the bin as a story retell prop kit. If you want to see an example of a story prop kit, check out the one I shared about Apple Trouble.

For the apple orchard sensory bin, you can drop the pom poms in the dixie cups or the toilet paper rolls. You can work on in/out, up/down, fall, pick, gather, eat, bite, etc.

Furthermore, you can turn it into a game where the student rolls the die and sees how many apples they can pick.

For the bins with the plastic apples, put mini trinkets with your student’s sounds, and work on inferencing by putting small picture cards inside and having students guess. Before putting the apples in a bin, have students find all the apples that fell from the tree. Put them around your room and give receptive language commands to reinforce spatial concepts.

When students select a plastic apple in the bin, you can target open/close, in/out, look, what, find, etc. Have your student work on placing the apples in and out of a basket and other basic concepts.

When using the apple sensory bin with the fake apples from Michael’s, put your favorite speech or language flashcards in the bin with paper clips attached! Then, your students can select the cards with a magnetic wand. Have your students put their flashcards on the table. Give your students clues for items; they can cover them up with a fake apple when they find them.

How Would You Use These Apple-Themed Sensory Bins in Your Sessions?

SLPs have the best tips and ideas for maximizing the use of material with students. Considering your speech therapy caseload, how would you use these bins to work on goals? Share in the comments to help give SLPs more ideas for re-purposing these themed bins.

Need more apple-themed ideas? Check out these blog posts:

Apple Co-Teaching Blog Post

Apple Activities for Middle School

Engaging Fall Themed Speech And Language Activities

Engaging Fall Themed Speech And Language Activities

I officially pulled out my Fall outfits and am sporting all my scarves, so it’s Fall y’all! Immediately after I wrote that sentence, I started singing, “Y’all gon’ make me spice things up, up in here, up in here.” Because in my world, nutmeg, cinnamon, and clove spice will often be used. Between the bread, muffins, lattes, pancakes, ice cream, and pies, I will be pumpkin spicing my life until after Thanksgiving.  How about you? Fall/Autumn is my favorite season because California’s weather is pretty off the charts. In this blog post, I wanted to share all my favorite engaging fall themed speech therapy activities you can do with your prek-5th grade classroom. 

Low Prep Fall-Themed Speech Therapy Activities

Use no prep Fall themed worksheets to target Fall Speech and Language activities. #slpeeps #dabblingslp #fallspeechtherapy #noprepactivities

After you read a Fall themed book or review Fall vocabulary, you can use themed NO PREP worksheets to target speech and language goals. If you need some fall-themed worksheets that are easy to prep, here are my Autumn No Prep Activities For Your K-4 caseload​.

Where is the falling leaf? Hide a die-cut or fake leaf from the Dollar Tree around your therapy room. Students have to ask “where” questions to get clues such as “Is the leaf under something?” or “Is it behind something?”

Fall Verb Charades – Write down a list of Fall verbs and have your students act them out. The rest of the group has to name the verb. Then, have each group member create a sentence with the verb. Here are some verb action examples that you can use: rake leaves, eat the apple, jump in leaves, bake a pie, smell a candle, sneeze, walk, gather leaves, drink hot cider, throw a football, carry an umbrella, carve a pumpkin, pick an apple, snuggle under blankets, pull out pumpkin pulp, eat a caramel apple, stir a pot of soup.


Easy fall themed speech therapy activities for elementary SLPs

Falling Leaves Pretend Play – Use the fake leaves from Dollar Tree, or you can buy them on amazon (affiliate link included). Grab a basket, plastic bag, and rake, and have your students rake up the leaves. Work on the noun function and describe a rake by attributes. Then, you can work on basic concepts IN/OUT as the student puts the leaves in the basket or plastic bag. After the students practice raking up the leaves, you can have them sequence the steps for raking leaves. First, you get your basket and rake. Next, you rake up the leaves into a pile. Last, you pick up the leaves and put them in the basket.

What else can you come up with? Share in the comments so that we can add to the blog post.

Fall Language Activities for Speech Therapy

When implementing a theme-based approach, use fall-themed vocabulary and concepts when planning your fall lessons. There are a lot of ideas for language activities you can do, such as comparing/contrast fall items, using fall photos to work on inferencing, wh-questions, etc. or sequencing with raking leaves or during fall baking. 

Non-Fiction YouTube Videos with a Fall-Theme

Easy fall-themed speech therapy activities for elementary SLPs.

This video is great for sequencing and learning the parts of a pumpkin!

Practice identifying the main idea and key details with this changing leaves non-fiction video from SciShow Kids.

Autumn Is Here by Scholastic – This Fall video has a lot of visuals of things that happen during the Autumn season. Target verbs and verb tense with the video. Practice answering wh-questions during and after the video.

Use Fall-Themed Vocabulary to Target Language Goals

Use the Fall vocabulary to target speech and language goals. Have students answer wh-questions while making these All About Autumn Books from my Low Prep Seasonal Flipbooks. They can make grammatically correct sentences with the items, answer questions about noun function, describe nouns by attributes and explain what people can do during Fall. Plus, you can send it home for additional Fall vocabulary.

You can also play games such as Go Fish, Memory, or the Flashlight game with Fall vocabulary or action words.

With fall vocabulary, you can work on basic concepts, building sentences with grammar structures, adjectives related to fall, and describing items by attributes. The fall-themed grammar and vocabulary activities have all these activities!

Fall-Themed Sensory Bins for Groups

Fall sensory bins for kids to use in speech therapy. #slpeeps #slpsensorybin #sensorybins #fallspeechtherapy #dabblingslp

Can You Find It? Fall vocabulary sensory bins can be an interactive way to work on noun functions and categories. Check out my blog post to see how you can make one HERE.

For my students working on functional communication with their CORE board or Go Talk, I used this bin to work on the CORE word “look”. We found the pictures and then I had the kids practice “look scarf”, “look squirrel”, “look rake”, etc.  We also just played with the popcorn and leaves working on “falling leaves” and “look leaves”. Some of my students loved the way the popcorn kernels felt, so I used that as an opportunity to target “like”. If you need this Fall sensory bin idea, it is in my Fall Push-In language lesson plan guide.

Crafts for the Fall Season to Use in Speech Therapy

A few years ago, I wrote a blog post about easy crafts you can do with your students working on functional communication. Read about the craft ideas HERE.

You can also use the Fall Tree Q-tip paint craft for any goal. Every time they practice their skill, they can add 5 dots of leaves.

For AAC CORE words, target look, see, want, more, yes, no, like, all done.

Students can request by colors to build MLU, color adjective words for green, red, yellow, and orange as well as verbs for paint, press, hold, give, look.

Share Your Fall-Themed Speech Therapy Activities

What fall-themed speech therapy activities do you use in therapy? Let me know in the comments or email me pics at fe*********@th*****************.com Of course, you can always tag me on instagram @thedabblingspeechie