Today I’m going to be talking about the best games for speech therapy, specifically digital games that can be used in-person and online. Although I will be recording another episode with more traditional games as well.
Indicators of an Online Game that’s Great for Speech Therapy
When selecting online game that are great for speech therapy, you want to look for games that are ad-free, consistently work with minimal issues or hangs, are on sites with reputable customer service in the case that issues do arise, and colorful and engaging.
Screening the games prior to using them in a speech session is very important to ensure they are appropriate from start to finish. You want to pick a game that either directly targets a skill or can be tailored to target a skill.
Benefits of online speech therapy games:
- to reduce clutter in the speech room (click here to read why science says clutter is bad for your health)
- to save space in the speech room
- to be more environmentally conscious
- to provide cutting edge resources to students
- to provide engaging resources to students
- to have a large library of materials that are easily transportable
- to easily provide teletherapy services
Are online games only for teletherapy?
Definitely not! While online speech therapy materials can be great for teletherapy, they are also a great way to boost student engagement during in-person speech therapy sessions. Digital speech therapy games and resources can easily be pulled up on a tablet or computer. You can have different resources open in different tabs to address different goals. When working with mixed groups, you can also choose activities that address multiple speech and language goals within one resource.
The best online resource is going to be something that highly engaging but non-distractive, as well as easy and enjoyable for the SLP to use. If you’d like to see some online speech therapy games in action, I’ll link to a blog post I did that has some videos of them in use.
Thanks so much for tuning in today! I would love to hear about what some of your favorite online speech therapy games are!
Links & Resources:
Full Transcript of Podcast: The Best Games for Speech Therapy – Digital Edition
Episode 91: The Best Games for Speech Therapy - Digital Edition
You're listening to the Speech Space Podcast, a podcast full of tips and resources for SLPs. I'm your host, Jessica Cassity, and this is Episode 91.
Today, I'm going to be talking about using games in speech therapy, specifically digital games that can be used in-person and online. Although I will be recording another episode with more traditional games, if that appeals to you more. So make sure that you check back that will be out in a couple of weeks. Before we get started, I did want to mention that this podcast is brought to you by The Digital SLP membership site, which is a site that features time-saving interactive digital resources that are all teletherapy platform-friendly. You can learn more or sign up by going to thedigitalslp.com/digitalslp. And we are also now offering a free trial, which you can also access at that same web address.
Online speech therapy games can either be directly or indirectly targeting a speech and language skill. So in an in-person setting, or actually even in an online setting, an example of a game that directly addresses speech and language goals would be something like Feed the Monster. And that's where, you know, if you're not familiar, that is generally where you have some sort of target on a card, if you are in-person or digitally on the computer. And that is going to be either put in a character in the Monster's mouth or dragged, if you're using the computer, dragged over into the Monster's mouth and then they eat the target. So that might be /R/ words or minimal pairs, or perhaps, there's a picture and the student has to name the opposite. But the game in itself was generally directly developed to target speech and language skills. Now, an example of a game that indirectly addresses speech and language skills would be something like grabbing two pictures and asking your students to find the difference. Now, I know they actually have apps with this as well, but the reason that this is a little bit more indirect is because the game was not necessarily developed to address speech and language goals. So it can easily be modified though with a little instruction from a skilled SLP. Now, just to be clear when I'm saying direct and indirect, I am specifically referring to the game itself and not the therapeutic approach.
So let's go ahead and talk about indicators of an online game that is great for speech therapy. So you want to look for games that are firstly, ad-free. Those that consistently work without any issues or hangs. And those that are on sites with reputable customer service, just in case issues do arise, because as we all know with technology, it can always be unpredictable. And then lastly, games that are colorful and engaging are generally going to captivate your student's interest more so than those that are not. I personally always suggest screening games prior to using them in a speech session, just to make sure that they're appropriate from start to finish. And in addition to the criteria that I just listed, you of course, wanna choose something that either directly or indirectly addresses the speech and language goals that you're working on. There are many games out there, but there are fewer online speech therapy-specific games. So you wanna pick a game that can target the skill or be tailored to target the skill that your student is working on. Otherwise, the game is just a time-filler and you're not actually addressing speech or language through the use of the game. Now, Digital SLP has a free no-strings attached sampler resource library that you can access without even needing to put in your email address. So I will go ahead and add the link to that in the show notes, so you can access it later.
Now let's talk about benefits of online speech therapy games. First of all, they definitely cut back on the clutter in your speech room. And if you check the show notes, I'll actually link to an article that talks a little bit about why science says clutter is bad for you. Secondly, you know, it's going to save space in your speech room. And if you're working with a small space, we all know how much we appreciate it whenever we don't have to add more things to the piles that we probably already have, or the papers that we already have in our filing cabinets. It's also more environmentally conscious. It provides cutting-edge resources to students. You know, a lot of students are used to technology. It also provides engaging resources. So these are things that more likely a lot of the time to captivate and hold your student's interest. Another benefit is that it gives you a large library of materials that are easily transportable. And then lastly, of course, these games make it really easy to provide teletherapy services. However, I do wanna emphasize that online speech therapy games are not just for teletherapy. They can also be used very effectively in-person as well. So to touch on that point, I often get the question: Are online games only for teletherapy? And like I said, definitely not. While online speech therapy materials can be great for teletherapy, they're also a great way to boost student engagement during in-person speech therapy sessions as well. Many Digital SLP members report that after initially using these resources for teletherapy, they also found them to be extremely helpful for providing open and go in-person sessions that their students were really excited about. Digital speech therapy games and resources can easily be pulled up on a tablet or a computer. You can have different resources opened in different tabs to address different goals. And when working with mixed groups, you can also choose activities that address multiple speech and language goals within one resource.
So in summary, the best on online speech therapy games are going to be those that your students will engage with, those that do not distract your students to the point that they won't participate in an interactive way. So, you know, some games might have too many bells and whistles and actually be a hindrance to performance. So that's something to keep in mind. You wanna make sure it's something that works for your student. And lastly, is something that is easy and enjoyable for the SLP to use because of course that matters as well. You know, if it makes your life easier as an SLP and is also effective for your students, then it's definitely a win. So if you would like to see some online speech therapy games in action, I will link to a blog post that I did that has some videos of them in use.
I will also be sure to add the link to the freebies library that I mentioned earlier in the show. Thank you so much for listening today. I would love to hear about what some of your favorite online speech therapy games are. Now, like I mentioned in beginning of the show, we are now offering a free trial on The Digital SLP site. So if you're looking for a collection of teletherapy platform-friendly resources that are also great for your in-person sessions, and you would like to give Digital SLP a try, or if you'd already know that you'd like to sign up, then head on over to thedigitalslp.com/digitalslp. And to access those show notes from today's episode that I mentioned earlier, please head on over to bit.ly/TSSEP91. And you can also go to thedigitalslp.com/podcast.