Monday, October 3, 2016

Using Play-Doh in Speech Therapy

I remember play with Play-Doh all the time when I was younger. It is still one of my most requested items with my younger clients. Here are some ideas on how we use it in therapy.

1. Build the tongue and model what it does for each speech sound. Peachie Speechie has this freebie in her TpT store.
Tongue Placement Freebie

2. Make something that starts with their sound.  For example, make items that start with /s/-blends: snake, stop sign, star, school, spot, etc.

3. Articulation Smash Mats- Many different sellers have smash mats in their stores. Here are some of my favorites:

Apraxia Smash Mats from Simply Speech

Play Dough Pizza Smash from Courtney Gragg
Spider Smush from Peachie Speechie

1. Simple following directions games.  It can be something as simple as the SLP giving the directions to make a pizza or cookies.  There are also ideas on TpT such as:

Play Doh Pizzeria from Stars on the Spectrum

2. "Pictionary" but they sculpt it instead of draw it.

3. Barrier games.  Put up a barrier in between the two kids and have them describe what's on their side so that the other can make it exactly the same way.

4. Themed cookie cutters for vocabulary. Grab some at the dollar store with the current season. As the students/clients cut out these shapes in the play doh, discuss the different vocabulary words, definitions, etc. Have them come up with sentences about them.

5. Building items in categories.  Make different kinds of fruits. Build different types of vehicles.

6. Describing.  Have the students/clients make an item and then use specific, descriptive language.  Is it long or short? Is it blue or red? What is it used for?

7. Create the letters of their name or trace them in the doh.  Preschool and kindergarten teachers will love this!

8. Basic Concepts--Target prepositions with the play doh.  I love this packet from Live Love Speech to do just that!

9. Nursery Rhymes--Nursery Rhymes are especially great for phonological awareness and sequencing. Here are smash mats from some TpT sellers:

Nursery Rhyme Play Dough Mats

No Print Nursery Rhyme with Smash Mats
10. Story Retell--Have your client/student retell a story by making the various parts of the story out of play doh. You can also use smash mats such as these to help them retell the story.

Old Lady Smash Mats from Simply Speech

11. Smash mats to cover those topics and more!  Check out TpT, as many sellers have smash mats that cover more than I listed above. For example, Simply Speech has these that cover WH questions, prepositions, and pronouns!

Language Smash Mat Bundle

1. Play restaurant.  Have the kids take turns order and serving "food" that they make with the play doh.

2. Have the students/clients share the play doh containers and utensils. Have them ask politely to pass them. Work on sharing. Also tie in some Social Thinking concepts such as Expected/Unexpected.

3.  Smash Mats--There are some smash mats on TpT that are specifically for pragmatics. I love this one from SmartmouthSLP!

Social Skills Squish Bundle

How do you use play doh in speech therapy? 

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