There has been a shift in service delivery models in which school districts are wanting SLPs to implement collaborative services for students with IEPs. I know when I did my grad school internship, I was only introduced to doing “pull-out” group sessions with students.
I never really learned about what collaborative services were in grad school, nor did anyone show me the ropes to implement these types of services. As I began to grow as a clinician and see the needs of my students, I knew that I wanted to be in the classroom more often.
Collaborative Services Are Scary (At First)
I was nervous and scared. No one teaches you how to work with your colleagues or how to implement collaborative services. There isn’t a manual or a curriculum that you can follow. What I have discovered over the years is that there is not a “one size fits all” solution for students. What works for one student may not work for the next student.
So, today, we are going to learn the different types of service delivery models that you can start implementing for students.
Collaborative Services For Your Students
Co-Teaching: an integrative service delivery, where the SLP and the classroom teacher plan together and carry out a lesson together.
This could mean that one or both teachers do the whole class instruction and each run a different station that was planned together.
One-teach/one-float: the classroom teacher teaches the lesson and the SLP “pushes in” to assist specific students or observe a student. There is no planning with the teacher using this service.
Consultation, coaching model: the SLP discusses strategies with the teacher to implement social skills in the classroom.
You may come in to model a strategy or skill. Creating visuals or supports and coaching the teacher on how to use them are examples of this type of service model.
Pull-out model: the SLP is addressing areas of need in a small group setting outside of the classroom environment.
Teaching Approaches You Can Use with an Integrative Service Delivery Model
Supportive teaching—a combination of pullout services and direct teaching within the classroom.
Complementary teaching—the classroom teacher presents the curriculum content as primary instructor, and the SLP assists specific students with work completion.
Station teaching—instructional material is divided into parts, with the SLP and the classroom teacher(s) each taking a group of students. Students rotate to each station, or learning center, for instruction.
Teaching Approaches Continued
4. Parallel teaching—the students are divided, and the classroom teacher and the SLP each instruct a designated group of students simultaneously, with the SLP taking the group of students that needs more modification of content or slower pacing in order to master the educational content.
5. Team teaching—the SLP and the classroom teacher teach the academic content together, allowing each professional to provide his or her expertise.
6. Supplemental teaching—one person (usually the teacher) presents the lesson in a standard format while the other person (usually the SLP) adapts the lesson.
How I Implement Co-Teaching in my K-2 SDC Classrooms
For the past three years, I have implemented a co-teaching collaborative service model with my Special Day Classroom teachers. Once I had buy-in, doing this model has been so effective for my students. I also found that I was able to also implement consultation and coaching with this model. Check out how you can set up your own push-in sessions HERE.
Want More Professional Development About Collaborative Services?
If you are tired of feeling alone and insecure about your abilities to implement collaborative services, I created an ASHA CEU course that will help you have the tools to feel confident with implementing push-in services with your caseload. Sign up today HERE.
What Questions Do You Have About Implementing Collaborative Services?
Starting a new way of servicing students is overwhelming, scary, and filled with doubts! If you have a question about how I implement collaborative services, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I would love to know what successes you are having with implementing one of these collaborative service delivery models. Share in the comments or email what is working for you and your staff.
During the spring months, I love using specific themes to cover speech and language goals. Bugs, farm life, and spring vocabulary are part of my March and April themes. I also love incorporating chickens into my small group and push-in therapy because many kindergarten teachers are talking about newborn animals. Some teachers even raise eggs to hatch into baby chicks! If you are in search of chicken speech therapy activities for your K-2 students, you came to the right blog post.
Small and Whole Class Lesson Support
For my Special Day Classrooms, I do some form of whole class or co-teaching service delivery model. When I plan lessons for my whole class lessons, I definitely re-use those materials for my small group instruction as well. Today, I will be talking about how to implement the chicken speech therapy activities in a push-in format. But, if you don’t currently do a push-in model, you can still use these ideas in small groups. That’s the beauty of planning effective whole class lessons, because they work for small groups too (lesson planning made easy). If you are looking for information about how I set up my push-in lessons, check out this blog post HERE.
How to Structure Your Push-In Lesson
I usually plan a 15-20-minute lesson that I do with the whole class. During that time, I ask that the teacher and aides help support the behavior in the class. One day, I hope to train some of the staff to take data while I teach. #slpgoals
We start the lesson introducing the theme and reviewing behavioral expectations. Then, the teachers and myself run three different stations that last for 10 minutes each.
Behavior Management Tips for Work Stations
When I run push-in lessons, I try to follow the classroom rules and expectations. I also add in visual supports to help my students navigate what they should be doing during each station. I visually break it down into “What my body can do,” “What I do during the activity,” and “How to use my words.”
When it is time to transition to a new station, I set off a timer and use visuals to help remind students when they have to wait/go to the next station. You can read more about teaching behavior expectations HERE.
Chicken Books to Use with Your Speech Therapy Activities
After the stations, I read a book. During this time, I call on students with wh-question goals, emphasize key vocabulary, and try to get my students working on verb concepts to share about what they see in the pictures.
Here are some of my fave chicken books (Amazon affiliate links included for your convenience):
After I read the book, we do a Google Slide presentation about the theme.
Other activities you can do:
You can do an Anchor chart describing everything about chickens. You can include chickens “can” (i.e. Chickens can run.), “have” (i.e. Chickens have feathers.), chickens “are” (i.e. Chickens are animals.).
We play “Who has the egg?” I print out eggs or baskets and hide the eggs in the students’ hands while everyone has their eyes closed. Then, they open their eyes and students get to initiate a “who” question to a peer or staff member. We play this until all the eggs are found.
I will also put a chicken or an egg on a popsicle stick and work on the basic concept of the week. So, if I choose “above,” I will put the egg above students’ heads and items in the classroom. The students have to say “where” the egg is located.
Station #1 (10 minutes in length): Easter Egg Craft
Use an ice cube tray and put different colored paints in the tray. Attach pom pom balls to clothespins. Students can dip the pom pom balls in the paint to make different designs on the egg. You can work on initiating requests, waiting/sharing, asking friends to pass the paint, and talking about the colors. After the students create their craft, they can talk about what they did first, next, last.
Station #2 (10 minutes in length): Chicken Inferencing
Put the picture stimulus items in plastic eggs. I number the eggs with permanent marker, so I know what items are in which eggs. Use my inferencing cheat sheet to give students clues about “what” is in the egg. You can simultaneously work on taking turns, describing the noun by attributes and the concepts “open/close.”
Station #3 (10 minutes in length): Chicken Crossed the Road
Your students can work on making sentences with correct grammar using these mats. If you have students working on noun-functions or categories, the mats have food, school supplies, and transportation. Sentence frames are included to help your friends have greater success with more complex sentences.
Additional Chicken Speech Therapy Activities
I love using Dinky Doodads to work on skills. They are the perfect size for eggs. Check out how to use trinkets with plastic eggs HERE. You can also make a baby chick sensory bin to work on language skills. Check out the blog post for how to make it HERE (free printables included).
When I use a theme, I try to use the theme for at least two weeks. So, I will interchange some of the activities. At a station, I will bring in toys or games that can work on social skills and functional language.
With this cooperative game Count Your Chickens Game, you can target turn-taking, counting more/less/most, and describing the animals. I love Peaceable Kingdom games because there isn’t a winner or a loser. Perfect for our friends that like to win all of the time!
What Chicken Speech Therapy Activities Do You Plan?
I would love to know how you plan for therapy! If you have some fun chicken activities, share in the comments or tag me at @thedabblingspeechie.
What I love about planning my push-in lesson is that I can re-use the activities in my small group instruction. It feels so nice to have effective therapy plans that I can use across many groups.
There has been a big shift in school districts wanting Speech Pathologists to adopt push-in speech therapy services for their caseloads. It is very easy to tell SLPs to use this model, but without guidance, this process feels overwhelming. And as SLPs in the trenches, we know that when implementing a new model or approach, many conflicts can arise that impact delivering collaborative services well.
Concerns SLPs Have With Implementing Push-In Service Delivery Models
SLPs raise several questions about implementing push-in speech therapy services. Personally, I know since implementing different collaborative service delivery models, conflicts and roadblocks come up. Even though I am in my 12th year as an SLP, I still find issues with doing push-in therapy. It is an on-going learning process.
Here are some questions I have asked about push-in therapy:
How will I have time to fit in all the collaborative services into my schedule?
How will I take and keep data on these students?
Where and when will collaboration and planning happen during my work day?
More Questions SLPs Are Asking About Push-In Service Delivery Model
What do I do if a teacher doesn’t want me in his/her classroom? What if the teacher is difficult to work with?
How do I know this model is going to be effective for my student? And how do I communicate this recommendation to parents and staff?
Why is this deliver model more effective than doing pull-out therapy?
How do I structure lessons to target all my students goals?
These are very valid questions SLPs should be asking when considering a collaborative service delivery model. As busy SLPs it is difficult to know when collaborative services are appropriate, and how to manage those services. Furthermore, having the support for ways to plan effective lessons/classroom supports is time-consuming and complex. Trying a new service deliver model takes time. And it also means that you have to be willing to try new approaches and be flexible with the ups and downs with the process. One way that you can feel more confident about trying a push-in approach is getting some guidance with how to set up your push-in therapy session. Today, I will answer “How do I structure my push-in therapy session?”
Roadblocks I Have Faced Implementing Push-In Speech Therapy
I have been implementing push-in therapy sessions starting in my 4th year as a school-based SLP. Over the years, I have found the most success with implementing a push-in speech therapy model with my Special Day Classrooms. There has been a big desire to provide push-in support in the general education teacher, but one of the big roadblocks I faced was time. A lot of times, I needed to see 3-4 kids at a certain time and they all were placed in different classrooms. I physically could not push into the classroom for each child because of time. One group is 30 minutes long. If I went to individual classrooms, I would be spending one to two hours servicing that group. With the size of my caseload, my schedule was not able to accommodate a full collaborative model. For many general education students, I used a pull-out speech therapy model with a coaching/collaborative approach.
We Must Remember What IEP Stands For When Considering Service Models
It is also a good reminder that the Individual Education Plan is just that, individual. We must consider least restrictive environment, areas of need and how a student will learn best base don the present levels of performance. So, I am not in support of school districts telling SLPs that a full inclusion model is appropriate for every student.
How I Use C0-Teaching In My Special Day Classrooms
Today, I am going to share about how I do a co-teaching or team teaching model with my Special Day Classrooms. When I use this model, I know which students I am providing this support as their services. Some students that have services with me will participate in the push-in lesson, but I may schedule to see them at an alternative time because the areas of need/goals may need to be addressed with a different model. For example, if I have a student with persisting phonological processes, I will try to cover their goals during the push-in lesson as I can, but I may have them on my speech schedule to provide service for that goal in a pull-out group therapy session. Does that make sense?
Tips For Co-Teaching Model in my K-2 Special Day Classrooms for Mild-Moderate Delayed
I go into the classroom for a 50-60 minute block of time. Before starting this co-teaching model, I have set up expectations with the teacher with the support I need during that time. Even though planning out the lessons is more work for me, I found that it has helped teachers with looking forward to having me in the classroom. Typically, I will collaborate with the teacher via conversation or email about the themes and activities I want to plan. My level of co-teaching depends on the teacher. Some teachers like to participate during the whole class lesson and others need me to take the lead on running the entire lesson. Prior to implementing this support model, I share how the session time is structured and the level of support I am wanting to have with the teacher and aides.
What I Do Prior To Starting My Push-In Therapy
During this time, I also ask the teacher about how he/she structures her class and want to make sure I am following his/her classroom procedures. The classroom teacher can help take the lead on behavior management as well as pairing students at the appropriate levels. I am very upfront with my vision for the push-in and how I usually run the lessons. Before starting services, I try to make sure I answer any questions the teacher may have as well as giving them reasons why I chose the co-teaching model.
Here are some talking points that I share:
I get to learn from you and the staff on behavior management techniques. There is also an opportunity to learn about the curriculum you are using with students.
By doing services in the classroom, it helps minimize transitions and provides language instruction in a familiar, natural setting.
All students in the classroom can benefit from the language/social language instruction.
I can model techniques for the teacher and staff on how to facilitate more language/communication skills during the school day.
Helps With Collaboration With How To Support The Classroom Environment
It increases opportunities for the teacher and speech pathologist to collaborate about language supports.
I am able to plan lessons around the classroom curriculum or help with finding opportunities for students to practice language throughout the instructional day.
This model allows me more time to provide support with making visuals or modeling techniques to engineer the classroom for more language and communication (if you say this, then you need to make sure you do it to build trust in the teacher.)
How To Set Up Your Push-in Speech Therapy Session
You can set up a 30 minute whole class lesson or do a 50-60 lesson. Typically, I have found the most success in providing language enriched instruction when doing a 50-60 minute lesson. The longer session works best when you have teacher buy-in to help support running stations with you. The classroom teacher helps with managing behaviors and the flow of the lesson. The speech pathologist can teach the whole lesson as a group in front of the class. The second half of the lesson, break the kids up into small stations that last for 10 minutes each. The instructional aides, SLP and teacher help run a station. Students can rotate to the new language activity every 10 minutes. Or at each table, there is a different activity. If transition is difficult, then scaffold one activity to cover all students’ abilities.
Here is how I set up a push-in speech therapy session for a 50-60 minute period:
Welcome and introduce the activities planned. Review behavior expectations. This portion is implemented as a whole class at their desks or on the carpet. I utilize the instructional aides/teachers to support with behaviors and students focusing.
I read the chosen book to the class. I make it interactive by asking questions, using hand movements for verbs or have students predict what might happen next. You do not have to read a book during this whole class instruction. You can plan a lesson around a theme using songs, anchor charts and answering questions like a circle time routine.
Planning Movement Breaks & Whole Class Instruction After The Book
Then, I implement a movement break or a quick activity to keep the students focus.
At that time, I either do a Google Slide presentation with short videos, pictures to answer questions or working on “I see _______.” If I don’t do a Google Slide presentation, I have come up with a quick language activity to work on basic concepts, answering simple questions or describing an item by attributes. This portion of the push-in can be 20-30 minutes depending on attention spans and content planned.
Then, I explain each of the stations, who will run the station and which students will go to each station. The first month, you may have a heavy emphasis on transitions and behaviors around transitions. I use a lot of behavior visuals to explain what the child needs to do and how I will signal when it is time to move to the next station. My behavior visuals to teach routines and expectations has helped me support the class during this time. If you want to read more about behavior management, click on this post HERE.
Small Group Work Stations With Other Staff Allow Additional Meaningful Practice
Each station has an activity to do that is aligned with the common core standards and targets a language skill or a students goal. Typically, I give the aides and teachers the activities that are easier to implement, so if I don’t have time to give a lot of feedback and direction, they know what to do. I provide cheat sheet instructions or try to make the lesson straight forward, so the aides and teacher feel confident.
At my station, I may use the same activity with all the students or I may vary the activity instruction to give that focused time on specific goals. I try to make my lessons at stations aligned with many of the students goals, so they get multiple opportunities to practice. Station activity time can take 10-15 minutes. I usually make sure to allow 1-2 minutes for transitioning students to the next station. If you have a class that struggles with transitioning, you can just move the activities to the next table and eliminate having students moving from table to table. Also, if you find that you want aides/teachers at the three stations, you can do one activity at a time while you float and model skills across the different tables.
Planning Push-In Lessons
Planning push-in lessons can be time consuming and overwhelming. It can be difficult to come up with lessons that are easily adaptable for different language levels and skills. In my next blog post, I will be providing information on how to plan a push-in lesson as well as showing you a sample lesson plan. If you need language lesson plan guides with activities already thought out for your next push-in lesson, I have lesson plan guides for different themes that will help you feel more confident about going into the classroom. You can check those out HERE. If you have questions or tips for how you do push-in therapy, please share in the comments below or email me at email@example.com
Planning push-in language lessons for the classroom environment can be scary! And stressful. You are worried about failing with behavior management and having the time to plan lessons.
If you use these activity ideas for your lesson planning, your stress will go down because you will have a plan. And, your kids will be engaged, so unwanted behaviors will occur lesson.
Where I Currently Do Push-In Language Support
I have found the most success with doing push-in therapy in the Special Day Classroom setting. I would love to do more push-in for the general education classroom. A big roadblock for me with pushing into the general education classroom is that many of the students are in different classrooms. So, if I need to see three students at a certain time, I can’t push-in to all their classrooms at that time. And, many times, I didn’t have extra time slots to push-in to three classrooms.
If you are wanting to start pushing into the classroom, I recommend trying the Special Day Classroom!
This is how I set up my push-in lesson plans. I do a whole class activity for about 15-20 minutes. Then, I break the students into three small groups. I run a group, the teacher and aid each run a group. This allows us to provide small group instructions. Typically, I run the language group that is more complex or needs to adapt materials for many goals. Below, I am going to share Thanksgiving push-in lessons you can do in the classroom.
Even if you don’t currently use a push-in language model, you can still use these activities in small group sessions.
After I read the book, as a whole class we did a fabulous brain break dance to Gobble, Gobble, Turkey Wobble. This activity was a way to get the kids out of their chairs and following the words of the song. If you have students working on social pragmatics, you can have them participate working on keeping his/her body in the group.
Thanksgiving Simon Says Verb Actions
As a whole class, we played a mean game of Simon Says Thanksgiving verb actions. I modified the rules to just have one person telling everyone what action to do. We didn’t play the “Simon didn’t say part”. We acted out the following verb actions:
carving the turkey
cutting the green beans
stuffing the turkey
spraying whip cream
eating pumpkin pie
mashing the potatoes
stirring the pie batter
cutting the apples for the pie
pouring the gravy
spreading the butter on the bread
scooping the mashed potatoes
setting the table
Thanksgiving Push-In Language Activities at Small Group Stations
After we do the 20 minute whole class lesson, I break the students into smaller groups. The teacher, instructional aid and myself each runs a different station. I usually take the activity that I know how to adapt across all my students goals. At my station, this is where I try to take some data on the students performance.
For my station, we watched this super fun Thanksgiving themed Simon’s cat video. If you have not heard of these videos, you need to start using them! Check out my blog post here for ways to adapt these free YouTube videos for your younger and older students.
I used this video to target a lot of verbs and story sequencing. The first time we watched it, I modeled a variety of verbs with the present progressive verb tense.
I have been reading some research that says when we target a variety of verbs with a specific morpheme marker, we can help increase generalization.
During this lesson, I used conversational recasting during the video with my students. If the student said, “cat take”, I would recast the student’s production with “The cat is taking the food.” With conversational recasting, you take the student’s utterance and model it for them with the correct grammar form.
Here are the verbs we used during this activity: />
Small Group Station #2
For the second station, students practiced learning Thanksgiving themed verbs playing a lively game of memory using magnetic wands. I just put paperclips on the cards and kids got to pick cards using my magnetic wand. Students simultaneously worked on turn taking and following the social rules for a game.
Will you be walking the plank this week in your speech sessions? SLPs out there that love themed therapy, let me just tell that pirates are a BIG hit with the kids. Our younger students love the idea of pirates and all the silly lingo that pirates say. If you need ideas for Pirate speech therapy activities, this blog post has all the inspiration to help you plan engaging speech and language lessons!
Pirate Speech Therapy Activities Using Crafts
When I do push-in speech therapy lessons in my Special Day Classroom for K-2, I try to incorporate as many hands on learning activities as possible. The kids find the lessons more fun, they can take the craft home to spark conversations with parents, and it allows an opportunity for naturalistic conversations or pretend play!
Crafts can be a lot to prep, so to make things easier, find easy to prep crafts such as this pirate paper bag craft. I typically do a 20-30 minute carpet circle time lesson including a pirate book, anchor chart or movement activity. Then, the students break up into three stations. I run a station, and the teachers/instructional aids run stations. We do those for about 10 minutes each and then rotate the students to the next station. Because I didn’t run the paper bag craft station, I didn’t get to see the kids puppets. At the end of the stations, over half the class initiated conversation with me because they wanted ME to see their pirate puppet. It was amazing to hearing all the spontaneous conversation. Some students even requested to take them out at recess to play with them.
Who Stole The Treasure Activity?
I found some plastic gold coins at the Dollar Spot during the St. Patrick’s holiday. After I read a pirate book, we play the “Who Stole The Treasure?” activity. It works on object permanence, being able to have impulse control to NOT reveal if they stole the treasure, ask/answer questions with peers, and using the body language necessary for talking with peers. You can also give students the treasure and work on answering simple wh-questions. Who has the treasure? Who has the gold coins? If you have more pirate props, you can give every student an item and work on “who” questions.
Have all the students close their eyes. Explain that if the student gets a treasure chest or gold coin, that they have to keep it a secret. When all the items are hidden, pick a student or students to ask his/her peers if they have the item? Continue this activity until all the treasure is found. The printables and lesson plan are part of my Pirate Push-In Language Lesson Plan Guide.
Make Your Own Treasure Sensory Bin In Speech Therapy
To make a Treasure Sensory bin, you need a filler, fake gold coins and items to hide in the bin. I liked using kinetic sand that I got at Lakeshore Learning, but there are some good deals on amazon for kinetic sand (affiliate)
I got my container from Lakeshore, but you can use any bin. I actually prefer bins that have clasps (amazon affiliate) on the lid in case you drop the bin in transit. I hid dinkydoodad trinkets that I found on etsy in the bin. Then, students got to go hunt for treasure.
Ways To Use The Treasure Hunt Sensory Bin
Once, students went hunting for treasure, we discussed the items they found by category group, noun function, parts, etc. You can go on a categories treasure hunt using my FREE printable that you can access on this blog post.
Another way that I used this bin was to work on the verbs “bury” and “hide”. After the kids went on the treasure hunt, they got to bury the treasure so that other pirates couldn’t find their loot. Your students can work on building grammatically correct sentences and answering “who” questions. “I buried _______.” And then I asked peers, “who buried the shoe?”
Pirate Books For Speech Therapy
A quick search on pinterest will help you select a pirate themed book for therapy. YouTube also has pirate read aloud books in the event that you don’t have pirate books in your own therapy materials library. Here are a few of my favorite books that I like to use:
The Pirate Who Couldn’t Say Arrr by Angie Neal M.S. CCC-SLP is a great book written by a speech pathologist! It is a great book for teaching /r/ and uses a lot of pirate vocabulary.
YouTube Videos To Use With A Pirate Theme
This pirate YouTube video is good for following directions and a great reinforcer or movement break.
Pirate Party Preschool Song is great for getting some movement, learning pirate vocabulary & doing verb actions.
The Go Noodle crew has a Pirate Prep video that is fun for a movement break and to keep the kids engaged in the lesson.
This video can be used to work on the /ar/ sound in therapy!
What Pirate Speech Therapy Activities Do You Plan?
What pirate speech therapy activities do you plan? Did you know that September 19th is Talk Like A Pirate Day? This is the best time to plan pirate activities. But, honestly, you can do pirates any old time you want to in speech. I think this theme is highly motivating for our younger students. I would love to know what middle school and high school SLPs do for pirates week! Share in the comments your ideas for older students.