If you’ve been following along for a bit, you may know that I love a good theme! It makes planning so much easier. Sometimes, though, it’s hard to incorporate themed fluency therapy ideas. Like, how are we supposed to provide good fluency therapy while keeping our seasonal theme for the week?
Well, I’ve 10 ways you can do just that! Let’s check out my favorite ideas for using themes in your fluency therapy sessions.
1. Themed interactive worksheets
A simple way incorporate themes and a hands-on activity is by using a fluency worksheet that’s based on your weekly theme. Most worksheets are print and go, which makes it even easier to grab and use.
If you don’t have fluency worksheets that are theme-based, you can have the student decorate a more generic worksheet with stickers or drawings. I’ve got seasonal interactive stuttering packs in my store ready to roll. Grab them if you want your own.
2. Themed books
Do you use books in your fluency sessions? They’re really versatile. I use them for describing pictures (contextualized conversation) and story retell (decontextualized conversation).
They’re also great for teaching the pausing strategy. Just put washi tape or highlighter tape in the places where students can practice pausing slightly. Grab a picture book based on your theme and you’re golden!
3. Themed sensory bin
Have you tried a fluency sensory bin? You can make them as simple or elaborate as you see fit. Fill them with items that can represent bumpy/smooth, fast/slow, or hard/soft. It’s a great way to teach these concepts to your littles.
Search for theme-based items for your bin – like pinecones and leaves for bumpy/smooth for a fall bin. Or maybe rabbits and snails for fast/slow in a spring bin.
4. Themed scavenger hunt
Scavenger hunts are a great way to get kids up and moving. Make a list of themed items to find around the room or even go outside the speech room.
You can easily practice fluency at the word, phrase, or sentence level when they find each item. Or have the students describe the items they find for conversational tasks.
5. Themed show and tell
Have students bring a theme-based item to speech! Have them find something from home that reminds them of Valentine’s day or gingerbread or whatever the theme. Then they can use their strategies to tell about the item.
Record them and have them rate their speech or give themselves feedback. It’s a great segue into talking about fluency shaping.
6. Themed crafts
Crafts are a great interactive activity for any theme or goal. For some easy ways to make crafts work for fluency (or any goal) check out this post.
And if you want a short-cut, you can grab my seasonal accordion crafts. There’s one for fluency and it can be mixed and matched for any of the other seasons!
7. Themed stickers for pacing
My students and I love to make pacing sticks. We just grab a tongue depressor and put stickers on them to help with slowing our rate or using the syllable timed speech strategy.
Add some themed stickers to your tongue depressors and you’re good to go!
8. Themed representations
One strategy that I like to use for the education piece of my fluency therapy is representations. This is where the student chooses a preferred topic – like basketball or Harry Potter – and uses the aspects or characters to represent different parts of fluency education.
For example, dribbling in basketball might represent repetitions. The wand in Harry Potter might represent the light contact strategy. You could easily do this with themes. Have them make representations based on your weekly theme like Halloween or dinosaurs.
9. Themed interview questions
One of the ways I like to help a student with desensitization is by doing interviews. They have the questions right in front of them and practice asking them to different people around school or other environments.
Make it themed by having the student come up with questions about that holiday or topic!
10. Themed feelings/emotions discussions
Finally, a lot of times holidays or events can dredge up anxiety, fears, and fluctuations in their fluency. Have some good discussions about situations surrounding that holiday that they may find difficult.
Create a sheet with a hierarchy of easy to difficult situations that the student might encounter. You can grab a free hierarchy worksheet in my free resource library! Just look in the fluency handouts.
I hope you got some great fluency therapy ideas! Save the graphic above if you want an easy way to remember them. Now go and rock that stuttering therapy!