P.O. Box 331
Canadaigua, NY 14424
At first glance, the three products I received from Speech & Language Warehouse do not seem to go together. What do cookbooks, greeting cards, and DVDs have in common? Not much when you purchase them at most stores, but a lot when they come from Speech & Language Warehouse. All of the products I received help parents work with their children on proper language development.
Greetings-in-a-Bag are sets of 4 blank greeting cards with matching envelopes, decorations, and learning activities. I received the Welcome to Fall set, the Happy Hollydays set, and the Going Zooey set. Each Greetings-in-a-Bag set is perfect for family fun with language learning activities. The blank cards and envelopes are colorful and produced with high quality paper. The decorations are made from thin foam and are suitable for children over the age of three. You will need either double sided tape or a glue stick and crayons or markers to make each card. Some of the language activities included in Welcome to Fall are: find two leaves that are the same color, incorporate verbs and verb tenses into the card making, use the decorations to reinforce the plural of leaf, and have your child request a leaf by color.
Greetings-in-a-Bag are fun projects. They are not just for speech therapy students. Any elementary-age student, as well as many older students, will enjoy making the colorful cards to send to friends. I would definitely buy these at a store; I love making cards!
A Therapist's Cookbook contains directions for working with children in the kitchen. The introduction includes a list of skills as well as a variety of language activities that go along with cooking. The actual recipes are divided into the following categories: Salads & Veggies, Soups & Stews, Meals & Main Courses, Breads & Muffins, Cakes & Cookies, and Cooking Terms. Every recipe comes with step-by-step instructions that are easy to follow. Pages are uncluttered and set in a readable font for early readers. The cooking terms section is terrific-very thorough. It begins with "A la mode" and ends with "Yield." In between are a variety of terms and their meanings or directions. This is a cookbook that is just right for beginning cooks and helpful even for seasoned chefs.
Sounds Like Fun DVD, Guidebook, and Cards are a comprehensive set of parental instructions for good sound productions. The DVD runs for almost 60 minutes and covers the material presented in the Guidebook. The DVD menu is easy to navigate so that you can watch the specific areas you are trying to target in your home and not the entire program. Speech therapist Erin works with Ian to cover all eight of the sound groups. This is where a parent would start to see how to present the material at home. The Guidebook gives additional instruction in producing each sound and has a list of fun activities for lip and tongue placement. (ex: Put a little whipped cream on your child's upper lip. Have him lick the whipped cream off using his tongue tip. This exercise helps children practice keeping their tongue tip up.) The cards are useful in getting children to say the sound in the context of words. They say the name of the picture to demonstrate their mastery of the sound you are working on.
Two of my children have attended speech therapy, one for a year and the other for several years. Most of the activities demonstrated on the DVD are similar to or exactly like the activities our speech therapists used. At $39.99 plus shipping this product is MUCH CHEAPER than one visit to a speech therapist. If you think your child has a speech problem, this is a good starting point to help them before the speech difficulty becomes severe. If you child does not make progress after several weeks of continual speech work, you should consult with a licensed speech language pathologist to determine if professional intervention is necessary.
I really like all three products. I wish Sounds Like Fun had been available to me when my daughters were having speech difficulties. If it had been available, I believe one of them would not have needed therapy and the other would have needed it only for a while. My son has trouble with the sounds of s, z, and r, and I will definitely be using Sounds Like Fun with him!
Product review by Tina Rice, Contributing Writer, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine, LLC, September 2006