Speech Therapy Theme Review: Tacos!

I introduced a new speech therapy theme to kick off May.  I LOVED this taco theme!  So much fun and the book was enjoyed by each of my clients.  So glad I added it to the schedule for May.   Wondering how you can add a taco theme to your schedule?  Read on to find out!

Taco Book for Speech Therapy

I freakin’ LOVE this book!  Any book that spurs spontaneous language from even my quietest clients is going to get a recommendation from me!  Not sure if it was the dragons or the tacos that drew the kids in.  Either way, it worked like a charm.  There is also a sequel that is already on my Amazon wishlist.  If you decide to add a taco theme to your lesson plans, you need “Dragons Love Tacos!”

TpT Activities

Of course, I had to come up with an interactive book for my younger clients.  My toddlers and preschoolers often are not able to attend to longer books.  This interactive book comes in a set that works well with early elementary ages.  You can use the activities in the set with other taco books or crafts.

Another TpT resource I used came from The Speech Table.  It is a quick and easy articulation activity the kids enjoyed.

Craft Time!

Why not set up a taco bar as your craft?   If I was a school SLP or worked in a clinic setting, I would have went all out with decorations, creating the best fake taco bar ever!  But I was not about to let traveling take all the fun out.  I prepped our “to go” boxes with all the ingredients.  The storage containers came from Dollar Tree.  Each container was labeled so the kids could see what was in each.  We used this craft to work on artic drill, asking questions, spatial concepts, vocabulary, and following directions -just to name a few.

Now that your taco bar is set up in speech therapy, here’s how to make the taco craft.

Paint a large paper plate yellow.  Now, it’s a corn tortilla!  Allow it to dry, then fold in half.  Add taco meat (shredded brown paper), lettuce (shredded green paper), tomatoes (1 square of red tissue paper), cheese (1 square of yellow tissue paper) and guacamole/avocados (1 square of green tissue paper).  Put two staples on either side of the taco to keep all the ingredients in it.  You could add pieces of pipe cleaners for peppers or add a cotton ball as sour cream.  Shredded yellow paper would also make great cheese!  I like to use dot paints (or paint daubers) because the paint dries faster.

This theme is a great one to use any time of year.  National Taco Day is October 4th, which would be an awesome time for the theme, or just use it to spice up a regular Tuesday!

The SLP, April and a Podcast!

This month, I am taking on a challenge like no other: this SLP is going to produce a podcast!  If you have been reading up on my monthly goals, you’ve noticed that it has been all social media improvements.  But this month, I am actually going to work on something I have been wanting to do for MONTHS!!!  I knew if I never put it on a schedule, it would NEVER get done.  There is something fascinating about a goal list or a “to do” list that just gets stuff done.  When you physically take pen to paper and go through the motions of writing it down, it feels so amazing to cross it off when it is complete.  Maybe that is just this SLP talking, but I love the feeling!

So, what’s the podcast about?  Well, I am in the planning stages as of this blog post.  I have a name and ideas.  The general purpose of the podcast is to take you through my experiences as a private practice/TpT author SLP.  In no way will I suggest that I am an expert in what I am doing, but I will share basic business “stuff” that ranges from naming your business (be it a private practice or TpT store) to social media marketing (like the blog posts with more breakdown) to SLP fails to self-care.  My tagline is “business, speech therapy and everything in between.”  I plan to offer even more freebies to go along with the episodes… just not exactly sure how often or what format-planning freebies, tips… who knows?

I feel like we are so caught up in setting our business apart from others that we end up looking like everyone else.  With this podcast, I want to (hopefully) inspire others to think outside the box.  Do you.  Be you.  Market you.  Whether you are in private practice or a TpT seller, do you!

Aside from sharing my journey and reliving my epic fails, I want to share books!  If I am reading an awesome and inspiring book, I want to tell you about it!  Maybe I am reading the absolute cutest book ever in therapy… I am going to share it!

The plan is for the episodes to be short.  I enjoy podcasts that are 10-15 minutes long- the perfect time span while I am driving between clients.  I want school-based SLPs to listen on their lunch breaks because we all know you are LUCKY if you get a 10-minute lunch break!

Now that I have shared my soul with you, I hope maybe you are wondering when you can start listening.  The first episode is already planned, it just needs to be recorded.  I am shooting for May to drop the first episode.  The goal is for it to be a weekly show.  Once I get going good, I have a few SLPs in mind for interviews.  If you have ideas for an episode or two, I would LOVE to hear them!!  You can comment below or shoot me an email!

Want to hear more about my monthly goals?

Twitter & LinkedIn

Newsletters and TpT




The SLP, March, LinkedIn and Twitter: What I Learned

This social media experiment has been an interesting one.  When I set my goals for 2018, I really did not think I would learn much about how to market my business as an SLP.    I thought I would learn about each channel and be able to just continue posting everything everywhere.  That’s what that “share” button on Instagram is for, to just share that one piece of content across Facebook, Twitter, Tumbler, etc?  While I have learned that yes, you can do that, there’s more to social media marketing than just that.  See what this SLP found out during her month with Twitter and LinkedIn.

For March, I targeted two unknown channels.  I have had a Twitter account for a while as well as a LinkedIn profile.  You know that feeling when you bring home your first-born child and you realize it is your job to raise this tiny human, but it seems as if the hospital must have forgotten to send home the manual on how to do it.  Then panic sets in.  Yeah, that is how I felt with both!  Actually, I was more comfortable raising my tiny humans than posting anything to Twitter or LinkedIn.  At least I had “manuals” for Twitter and LinkedIn!  (Now, if the hospital could just send me that “Congrats!  You made it to the teenage years.  Here’s how to survive that!” book!!!)

Twitter for the SLP

I found a great book that was really easy to read.  “Twitter: 25 Powerful Twitter Marketing Tips for Small Business” by R. S. Boone is great for the Twitter newbie just wanting to promote their business.  When I first started out,I did not know anything about Twitter.  This book helps you make a great profile, how to find connections, and what not to do.  If you are in private practice or running a TpT store and you have a Twitter account, I definitely recommend this book.

I will admit I am in still in the learning stages of Twitter.  I do schedule my posts on HootSuite, but I still use the free version.  Until I start seeing a major impact on my TpT store and blog, I will probably continue to put very little money into marketing on Twitter.  However, my interactions did increase this month on Twitter.  I added more followers, found people I am following on Instagram and had more retweets this month than ever before, but Twitter is such as fast-moving channel that many tweets go unnoticed.  I post around 3-5 times a day.  Then I try to retweet 3-5 tweets from other SLPs or companies that I follow.

LinkedIn for the SLP

LinkedIn is unlike any other platform.  I rarely posted on there because I had no idea what to do and I did not want to look like I did not know what I was doing.  Then I heard this podcast with a guest named Viveka Von Rosen.  In the podcast, she mentioned she had written a book about using LinkedIn.  I bought a sample of it on Amazon (I read many books on my IPad.).  I was instantly hooked!  I ended up buying “Linked In: 101 Ways to Rock Your Personal Brand” and loving it! This book is ridiculously easy to read.  I loved that I could read a section and instantly apply what I had just read.  It is literally a list of 101 ways to improve your profile.

While my profile is FAR from perfect, it is more improved than before!  I am sharing my blog posts relevant to SLPs as well as the occasional TpT product.  My target is to post 3-5 times a week and I am working up the nerve to post videos.  But let’s face it- I have just now gotten comfortable posting videos on Instagram.

Hit the Mic with The Stacey Harris” is a new podcast I found over the last week.  She was a guest on another podcast I listened to.  She covers LinkedIn on several of her podcasts.  They are relatively short, which makes them great for traveling SLPs.

If you are on either of these platforms, I would love to connect!!

Social Media, Content and the SLP

When I started in January working on a plan to better my social media accounts, I honestly had no idea what I was getting into.  I just knew as an SLP in 2018 that if I wanted to improve my business, I had to learn how to “social media.”  (Yes, I just turned that phrase into a verb!)  So, I started in January on my Instagram.  The word “content” popped up EVERYWHERE!  Planning content, scheduling content, prepping your content calendar…content, content, content!  First, I had to figure out what “content” was.  Then, I had to plan and prep it, schedule it, and post it!  What the heck?!  Where do I even start?

Starting the Social Media Content Planner

I bought a giant calendar at Staples at the first of the year.  This is how I was going to plan content.  When it comes to planning, I am a “paper-pencil” girl.  Technology is great, but I need to physically write things down.  I need to be able to flip the pages to see what is coming up, what has been done, and what needs to be done.  (I cannot be the only paper planner person out there, right?)  In January, I was only planning Instagram content and blog posts on this calendar.  How could I designate which was which?

Cue the college study days when EVERYTHING was color coded!!!  I got out my flair pens that fit my brand colors and started planning!  Instagram posts are hot pink.  Blog posts are light purple.  If I plan to promote a blog post on Instagram, it had a pink AM or PM beside it.  That meant it would either be my morning IG post or my evening IG post.  I did this for the entire month of January.  In February, I added TpT and my blog newsletter.  Both are in turquoise ink.  Now that I have added LinkedIn Twitter, I am changing it up a little.  Still color coded but done differently.  I am experimenting with it right now, so I am not ready to share that process just yet.  But let’s just say my April content calendar looks like a rainbow!

I also have a checklist that I complete each week to make sure I stay on track, even on the road.  Obviously, I can’t take my giant calendar with me.  But between clients or if I have a cancellation, I can work on my posts for the next day or next week easily.  The checklist is not quite ready to share, but I PINKY PROMISE to share once I have it right.

I have many other SLPs reach out to me to say they are wanting to improve their presence on social media.  If you have picked one or two channels, this would be a great way to start planning your content.  I would love for you to tag me on Instagram and share your content calendar!

This SLP Eats: Vegan Tacos

I could not quite decide what recipe I wanted to share this month. I went back and forth between “regular” food and vegan. Do I want a quick week night recipe or a more complicated recipe for the weekend? Then it hit me! Share the recipe you have on the schedule every week. This recipe is perfect for a busy SLP who comes home exhausted from giving all day. It’s perfect for the mom who literally has 30 minutes to prep and eat dinner before little Johnny’s soccer practice. The bonus? It tastes good too!

I found tons of taco recipes when my husband started his vegan journey. It has not been easy. Even though the kids and I are not vegan, we made a compromise to eat one vegan meal a day…unless we go out for dinner! The vegan tacos are a hit with EVERYONE in the house! I love it because it literally takes like 10-15 minutes to cook. Clean up is easy because you only used one pan. I warm my tortillas up in the “restaurant style warmer/serving thing” (yes, that’s the technical term…LOL) in the microwave just as the beans are finished. My daughter slices up the avocado and we are ready for dinner.
Now, I put my own twist on these tacos. Most of the recipes floating around out there include corn (which we are not big fans of!). To feed our family of 4 (including two VERY active kids and a 6’4” husband), I use two 14 oz-ish cans of black beans, 1 avocado, half of a yellow bell pepper and 1-2 tsp of ground cumin. Make sure to have grated VEGAN cheese and corn tortillas. If you don’t wish to go full vegan, you can use flour tortillas or regular grated cheese. The kids and I only add the regular cheese. We like the shredded cheese mix of Colby Jack and Monterrey.

Get to Cookin’ SLP!

To start, dice your pepper. We like to use the yellow bell pepper but have used green, orange or red too. Now that your pepper is diced, open and drain your black beans. TRUST ME! Don’t forget this step. Your tacos will be runny if you don’t. Place the peppers and beans in a medium saucepan and heat. Add your 1-2 tsp of ground cumin. Stir and continue to heat (on medium) the bean mixture until hot. During that time, you can chop up your avocado. We typically use 1 large avocado. Heat your tortillas in the microwave. If you are using corn tortillas, I recommend heating them prior to stuffing them with beans, cheese, peppers and avocados. If you are using flour, you can stuff them and then heat.
Stuff your tortillas with beans/peppers and cheese. I like to melt my cheese in the microwave for a quick 15 seconds. Then I put the chunks of avocado on and CHOW DOWN! Add some rice or even refried beans and TA DA! Dinner is served!
As you may know, I am not a food blogger! So, I am sure the technicalities of food blogging have been completely missed. But I am a momma, wife, SLP, business owner who must cook and eat dinner every night. If you are reading this, chances are good you are too! Since I am not a food blogger, I have no picture of a finished product because I just cannot take a good food picture! But it is so yummy. You can never go wrong with tacos, right?!
Need another dinner idea? Try these enchiladas out!