This Week’s Speech ::: Token Tower Motivation

Two weeks ago I was have difficulty with one of my clients in trying to get him to do the work I needed him to get done so that I could finish pre-testing. He is an elementary school age boy so a lot of what he wanted to do was to play games and not focus on any of the work I brought in at all. My initial plan was to play a game through-out our session and have him do cards and answer questions in between our turns. However, he knew how to prolong his turn in the game we were playing so that he wouldn’t have to do any more of the work. My next idea was to wait to do the game in the end after he did his work, and let me tell you trying to explain this notion to a young kid is not easy! He would tell me he understood that if he finished his work he would get to play a game, but then he would get frustrated after ever question he answered about not getting to play. Now, I wasn’t going to get mad at him because I realize he isn’t understanding fully what I am trying to do so this past week my goal was to find a visual way to let him know his progress in doing work and to be a constant reminder of how close he is to playing his game.

That is how I realized this little beauty would be a very good helper in my mission:

Super Duper Token Tower

Super Duper Token Tower

I know this is not a homemade item but it is a product my graduate school program has purchased and allows us to use. I really like it because after my client does some work I give him a token and he can watch his progress. Here is how I set up the activity:

Pre-Test Activity

Pre-Test Activity

This is what I used with the token tower. I typed up all the pretesting I needed done (following 2-step directions, answer what & where questions, and answer a question about a passage) and I printed them on little slips of paper. I then assigned each piece a value of how many tokens it will earn him by answering it. I felt this was a way he could have control on what he wanted to do and he could choose how fast he wanted to fill the tower. I set up that papers so that all the number values were facing up and when he picked the one he wanted, I would read off the back side (he never saw the actual questions). This activity went really well! My goal was 30 on the tower so I had to divy up the points on the papers between 2, 1, and .5 values. It was fun teaching fractions 😛 That was one thing I did not intend on doing but he learned a little extra that day (I think if you look close enough you can see my explanation on fractions haha). I won’t lie, he was not super excited about this, but he did enjoy filling the tower up and reaching the 30. He did all my slips of paper and worked really hard during the session so I call it a success!

I really liked this activity because it worked for a kid who doesn’t like to do therapy work and got him to work with me for a full session (thirty minutes) and be cooperative. Of course we agreed to play a matching game next time 😛 but all my pre-testing is now done!! Just thought I would share this because I know sometimes it is hard to find ways to work with difficult kids in therapy and find ways to motivate them to do work.

O and thank you Super Duper! Here is a link to their product if you are interested:

Side of Speech?

Hiya! My name is Mary and I am a student getting my masters for a degree in Speech-Language Pathology. Going through school I have realized that there are two things that I really love doing: working with clients and finding ways to help them and cooking! With school getting so busy I wanted to find an outlet to distress with, so I am making this blog 🙂

For my clients, I like making a lot of homemade materials and I know I brainstorm off other people’s ideas so I want to share mine in here in hopes it might help someone else. Since every client is so different, I know the more ideas the better so that each person can get the best care. If I have a little boy who likes to move around, a worksheet isn’t going to work… I don’t know how many times I have gone to Pinterest to get ideas on how to keep my client’s attention while working on goals! I find it fascinating how many creative ways there are out there to work on goals in therapy, especially when it is taking a household item and turning it into a full 30 minute session. So keep your eyes out for speech goodies in here!

As for the cooking… I just love to eat!! Cooking has always been a way for me to distress.  You know what the best medicine is for a stressful day? Going home and making a dough and working it out 🙂 Ever since I have been with my boyfriend, he has opened my eyes on how you can cook healthy by using good ingredients. Our house aims for lower calorie meals without sacrificing the taste of meals. Let me tell you, it can be tough sometimes to find tasty healthy food! When I first started cooking healthy for us, I kept finding recipes that were bland, odd textured, or just has bizarre ingredients and I started getting discouraged. I wanted to stop experimenting because I was tired of food that tasted bad but I kept at it. Now, I have become familiar with  flavors that work well together and ingredients that are low-cal/low-fat but still give good flavor. Cooking has become a puzzle with trying to find ways to make the food taste wonderful and worthwhile and still be good for you. I want to share some of my recipes I have found and modified with everyone else because I know how tough it can be sometimes to find those good recipes.

Right now this blog is empty but please come back to look around, I want to share some of the things I have learned and use. I hope you guys enjoy 🙂