Over the past few months, our SLP Katie and I have been trying to sharpen Jake’s auditory memory skills at the recommendation of Lynn Carahaly. Jake has consistently scored low on sentence recall and auditory memory tasks, so we have added some of these activities to our regular speech therapy sessions. A memory and brain that is worked out on a regular basis will result in stronger speech. This week Jake has been on Fall Break and I tailored some Halloween speech activities into auditory memory workouts.
1.) Halloween Bingo – When I think of this game, I think of SLP #3 at our local public school, who was a ghost hunter. Yes, you read that right. SLP by day and ghost hunter by night. I am fairly open to the idea of ghosts, so she was always sharing stories with me and one time, even sent me two audios of a hunt. True story. Therefore, she was a fan of Halloween and had a pretty cool Bingo game she loved playing this time of the year to spice things up.
Last year I went looking for my own Halloween Bingo game and found several versions for FREE over at Heather’s Speech Therapy. Click here to check it out for yourself. Jake and I love, love, love this game! There are four versions of this game available: basic, grammar, pronouns, and interrogative. Today I downloaded the Pronoun version and we used it to work on sentence recall. I would draw a card and say the sentence, Jake would repeat it after me, and then he would put his marker on the appropriate square. He loved the basic game from last year and he loves the more challenging game this year. Thank you, Heather for creating such an awesome, high quality game!
2.) Halloween Following Directions – This activity is great because it works on auditory memory, following directions, and spatial concepts.
We also did this activity last year and when I went to print out a fresh copy, the web site was no longer available. (Click here to view original version.) Fortunately, this is a really easy activity to mock your own. I drew a basic house on construction paper and then went through a few magazines and cut out Halloween pictures. It would also be very easy to find some basic Halloween pictures through Google.
Here’s what our activity ended up looking like …
3.) More Halloween Following Directions – Jake had so much fun doing Activity #2 that I got inspired to do a Halloween version of the Super Duper Hear Builder Following Directions computer program that he’s been doing in speech therapy for the past couple of weeks. Jake loves this program and it gives his brain a phenomenal workout. (More on this program later). I used the same Halloween pictures, grabbed a Happy Meal trick-or-treat bucket and read directions to him. For example …
4.) “The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid” of Anything by Linda Williams – An oldie, but goodie! Again, I put an auditory memory spin on this book by challenging Jake to remember what sound each piece of clothing made. As I got to each part of the story I would pause and wait for him to say the word. I made up a movement for each one, so if he couldn’t remember, I’d cue him appropriately. For example:
Me – Reading from the book: “Suddenly she stopped! Right in the middle of the path were two big shoes. And the shoes went CLOMP, CLOMP.” I pointed to “CLOMP, CLOMP” and got Jake to repeat these words after me.
The next page reads: “Get out of my way, you two big shoes! I’m not afraid of you,” said the little old lady. On she walked down the path. But behind her she could hear two shoes go …” At this point I paused and waited for Jake to say, “Clomp, clomp.”
If you are unfamiliar with the story, the plot builds and by the end, Jake was having to recall pants that wiggle, a shirt that shakes, two gloves that clap, and a hat that nods. He enjoyed having to *think and recall* what sound each one makes and it really helped the story come alive and proved to be a lot of fun!