(My Dream Shoe, by Michael Kors)
I love shoes! Just as much as I love shopping for shoes!And you may be asking yourself "what does this have to do with speech & language therapy?"
Well my friends, these two actually go hand in hand, and I promise you'll leave this blog post with a new rationalization for the shoe shopping you do this Easter weekend.
The thing is, after you slip those sparkling, sexy heels on, there's a great therapy resource lying on the floor longing to become one of your prized clinical tools....."the shoebox!"
I started making shoebox therapy tools late last year, when I was looking for a
new way to work on following directions. We had used larger boxes in grad school clinics to make the ever popular posting boxes, but I was looking for something smaller, that could be more easily stored. Thank goodness I had just bought a new pair of pumps. What I made ended up looking like this:
and the children loved it, even more than I had anticipated. I stuck the pictures on, then used a craft knife to cut holes for the mouths. Children are asked to feed pictures of food to the dog vs the frog, and when they put the picture in they are rewarded by a shaking box, and lots of hungry eating noises. For early vocabulary and sentence building I encourage "eat frog", "dog is eating", "the dog is eating icecream", etc, depending on level. I also use it to post artic or language pics, using the same concept of the posting box.
The next way I use my boxes is for categorisation and sorting, particularly with children on the Autistic spectrum. This, however, isn't an original idea, as I
have seen a similar concept on http://www.shoeboxtasks.com/. I have about 3 of these, working on sorting colours, frogs vs turtles and animals vs food, into different containers in the shoebox. These containers fit nicely into holes cut out with my handy craft knife.
Unfortunately most of my boxes are on loan right now to clients, but I have half a box, so to speak, to give an example.
This box is an all time favourite of a little boy with ASD, and at one point was the only real motivator for him in therapy. It was actually the first item I used to teach him PECS.
The original concept was taking the beads out and matching them to the 3 pipe cleaners by colour (red, green, yellow). As you can see he reaaalllyyyy loved this box and used it well. I think it's definitely time to make a new one, which also means it's time for some shoe shopping (see how this works ladies?).
I encourage you this weekend, for the sake of therapy and to really enhance your clinical practice, to go out and buy some shoes. Your clients will thank you for it.
Happy Easter everyone :)