Sherry, thanks for giving us back our son. We are so grateful for everything you did for Ben and our family. Not seeing you every week makes me feel that something is missing… but we look forward to a summertime walk! We miss you,Nicole, mother of 2 year-old boy who was dismissed from therapyWestport, CT
Sherry, thank you so much for working with my girls for so long. Your kindness, thoughtfulness, insight and professionalism made our experience so meaningful. My husband and I appreciate all you have done for them. Let’s keep in touch. Thanks again.Mother of 3 and 5 year-old girlsGreenwich, CT
Thank you Sherry! You are a BIG help and Max adores you.Maria, mother of a 5 year-old boyFairfield, CT
“Toys and Games to Keep Reading Skills Sharp Over the Summer”
Summer is a time to take the academic pressure off of kids and have fun. Why not play with a great family game or toy that can reinforce learning skills for reading: phonics, spelling, vocabulary, or story telling while having fun?
Sherry Artemenko, Speech Language Pathologist with over 17,000 hours working with kids can help parents choose fun toys full of learning while advancing reading skills.
Sherry’s PAL Award winners shared today are at playonwords.com
Here are some of Sherry’s Spring PAL Award winners in the Pre-literacy/Reading category:
The STEM/STEAM trend is really hot in the toy industry! Sherry Artemenko, Speech Language Pathologist with over 17,000 hours working with kids can help parents choose toys full of learning while advancing knowledge in science, technology engineering, the arts and math. Language arts is increasingly emphasized in school assignments as children are asked to explain their work, predict outcomes, solve problems and draw conclusions.
A great preschool game has the DNA to teach taking turns, concepts, vocabulary, listening skills and syntax to name a few learning objectives but when kids take off from the game format and launch into pretend play, I know it has that extra special element to spark creativity.
I was playing Peaceable Kingdom’s new PAL Award winner, “Where’s Bear?” designed to encourage meaningful moments of connection between a 2 year-old and his parents. The kids I played with loved this game. My two-year old friend was excited each time his older siblings told him to close his eyes while they hid the bear under one of the blocks. Then we asked, “Where is Bear?” After a few rounds, he became very possessive of Bear and liked him so much he made off with him and acted out some fun in the kitchen, “I go find a bear.” “Put up up up,” as Bear walked up the refrigerator and “I walk” as he moved along the kitchen floor. “Look Bear, come back!” Next his four-year-old siblings announced they were going to have a puppet show and left to gather blankets, earphones, tablets and of course the star of the show, Bear. They proceeded to put on a clever “puppet” show with Bear talking and entertaining. The show had to be short because the two-year-old wanted his Bear back!
A board game set-up can be a backdrop for specific pretend play scenarios too, so inviting that kids take their pet doggies, princesses or farm animals and take off from the game to engage in some pretend play. Wonder Forge is known for their creative use of the packaging and props to create a 3D house visited by the Cat in the Hat, an airport or doggie pet salon.
It’s been a year since I packed up all my therapy materials and PAL Award business and moved to Wisconsin. Anyone who does a big move knows that it’s “tedious and disruptive” as one of the movers said. I thought I did a good job but basically got the boxes to Wisconsin but then forgot about a lot of what was in them. So today I went through them all and found old friends. I found Tommy Toot, a little horn by Ambi Toys that helped produce a simple first toot for kids, my Kaufman Treatment Kit and Books that seemed so simple yet worked like magic with my apraxic kids. It was so against my method of speech therapy to “drill” words with picture cards but the kids loved them and showed wonderful progress as we used them. Two of my oldest friends from my clinical practice in graduate school at Northwestern University were my “30,000 Selected Words Organized
by Letter, Sound and Syllable” and Therapy Kit. The book of words was invaluable before word lists were prolific on the internet and posted by SLP’s offering free lists for all of us. Apparently others recognize its value too because it goes for $2,371.01 on Amazon.. Ah but their copy must be in better condition than mine. My “Therapy Kit” was loved and cared for as I carried it from place to place doing speech therapy. Amazingly versatile and useful, it opens to a triangle with sides of pockets for picture cards, felt for attaching story pieces, and a large mirror. Of course now we use our iPhone as as mirror in therapy. This friend is no longer mentioned on the internet. Anyone remember it?
Friends who are downsizing and moving have told me about a book I should read (in my spare time??) about saying goodbye to possessions and thanking them for their use. So I am officially thanking my old friends who entertained, taught, and made kids laugh while progressing on our speech therapy goals. I will pass them on to continue the good work im other hands!
Okay you heard it here…Crayola is retiring the dandelion color from its 24 crayon box. I sure hope its replacement is bright yellow because kids need that for sunshine faces! Tomorrow is National Crayon Day which my husband just said is synonymous with National Crayola Day. There is nothing quite like getting a brand new set of crayons and judging by all the adult coloring books in prime real estate at Barnes and Noble, adults are finding joy in coloring too.
Setting out a box of crayons and plenty of paper is a wonderful open-ended activity for kids and helps build fine motor skills for writing as well as language skills as kids create stories with their illustrations. Some children find writing a story challenging but will get inspired because they can draw the illustrations.
You know I like to feature projects that speech pathologists or in this case grad students in speech pathology, are involved with to help their clients. A team of grad students from NYU developed a free cookbook filled with yummy recipes for individuals living with dysphagia. The recipes are from a cooking challenge that enables masters students to create recipes that are both appetizing and accessible for those with swallowing disorders. Here’s a short review:
Dysphagia is a swallowing disorder that can affect patients of all ages under a variety of medical conditions. According to the ASHA, one in 25 adults in the United States experience swallowing problems. However, since the disorder spans across ages and medical conditions, research indicates that its prevalence may be underestimated.
When working with patients with dysphagia, the role of a speech-language pathologist (SLP) is to diagnose and manage patients’ dysphagia. However, a recent project from Speech@NYU – NYU Steinhardt’s online master’s in speech-language pathology – sheds light onto not only how SLPs can do more for patients with dysphagia, but also how patients with dysphagia don’t have to let their medical condition impact their eating experience.
Dining with Dysphagia: A Cookbook is a collection of recipes that are both easy to follow and easy to swallow. Based on the NYU Steinhardt’s annual Dysphagia Iron Chef Competition, the goal of these recipes is to make eating an enjoyable experience for individuals with all levels of dysphagia.
You know how much I love the NogginStik and Moms and babies do too. Here is their latest developmental rattle that also teaches eye tracking, grabbing, reaching and cause effect but also object permanence–the object is still there even if you can’t see it. Watch the little balls circle down the striped tube and disappear, all but one. Then tip the rattle upside down to empty the tube and there they are again!
Did you hear the results of the election?? No, not THAT one, the voting to determine what 8 tokens would round the Monopoly board in the next generation of players. The thimble, boot and wheelbarrow were voted out while T-Rex (came in second overall) , a rubber ducky and penguin joined the ranks of tokens for this classic board game.
What I find fun is that Hasbro, the maker of Monopoly, polled fans in more than 100 countries with over 4.3 million votes and it sparked some “online campaigning from outside forces, … Zipcar, the car-sharing company, advocated for the survival of the car token by asking fans to #SaveTheCar. The New England Aquarium got in the spirit by tweeting photographs of their penguins to #VotePenguin, and hosting a Facebook live event to Monopoly’s nearly 11 million Facebook fans,” according to the New York Times. With all the concern about the increased time kids and adults are spending on entertainment associated with technology, there’s still a huge fan base for an iconic classic game like Monopoly which transcends generations of family play!