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How to Choose the Best Games for Your Speech Therapy Sessions

What are some of the best games for speech therapy?

Children love playing games in therapy. I really do too, it keeps my students enthusiastic, engaged and it’s so much fun to see their excitement. I believe that play is a really valuable tool in creating speech and language learning that lasts. We get asked, “You play games all day in therapy, don’t you?”  Yes ma’am, sometimes we do!

Sometimes the cutest, snazziest looking games just aren’t right for therapy. 

I admit it, I have purchased a few games that were used once or twice, then just sat on the shelf gathering dust, because they are really not working for me. Maybe it took too much time away from getting responses or was only useful for a single goal. There was even that one that made that annoying noise that I couldn’t stand by the end of the session. (Ugh, I disabled that critter!)
So I learned that you want to be really purposeful in choosing games to take up that uber-valuable real estate on your therapy shelf. Because there is never enough of that.

5 tips for choosing games that you will pull out and play in your sessions again and again, guaranteed:

1.      Kid-Appeal: Is it colorful, does it have manipulatives, a theme that kids will like? Does it appeal to a range of ages?

2.      Quick turns: I want to focus on my speech and language targets, get as many responses in a session as I can, and keep interest high. To do this, I need a game that takes very little time to actually play each turn.  The game is just for fun and motivation, not the real focus of the session (although my kids may think so!)

3.      No Batteries: Face it, replacing batteries is expensive. My favorite go-to games are played with kid-power.

4.      Simple: Can even young children play the game? Those with motor issues?  Make mine easy to play, please.  No worries, I can differentiate and add the proper amount of challenge for each student with the therapy tasks we are working on.

5.      Versatile: I love a game that can be used year round and with various students. Have mixed groups? Me too, so I want games that everyone can play together, even when working on diverse targets.

Here are some of my favorite games from my therapy room. What’s yours?

Go Fish! From Fisher Price

Kids “fish” with the suction cup fishing pole. Find your color or play for the most points.
The one pictured is an older version, Yea, garage sales, my FAVORITE place to shop! Here is a newer version on Amazon:

The “Peg”gy Back Game from Lauri

Be the first to reach the castle. Hitch a “peggy-back”with another player if you land on them!
“Peg”gy Back Game

Pop-Up Pirate Game by Tomy

Put a sword in the slot after each response. Find the right spot, and the pirate catapults into the air.   (It makes me jump EVERY time, which delights my kids!)

Pop-Up Pirate 

Disclaimer! I am not affiliated with the above companies and do not receive compensation in any form from them. These are simply games that I own, and I love using in my speech therapy room.

Next time: Thrifty Speech Finds!

Credits: Dice Clipart by Alimath

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