Friday, April 18, 2014

2014 Better Hearing and Speech Month Flyer

As most of you probably know, Better Hearing and Speech Month is rapidly approaching! Last year, I created a flyer to distribute to teachers regarding classroom acoustics.  It received a lot of attention on pinterest, so I wanted to update the flyer with this years logo (not as cool as last years if you ask me). The logo and information were obtained from ASHA's webiste.

Grab your flyer here!

What are you doing to promote Better Hearing and Speech Month?

Sunday, April 13, 2014

iName It {App Review & Giveaway}

iName It ($14.99), an app by Smarty Ears was designed for those with word finding deficits. Although it was designed with adults in mind, iName It can also be used with children. 

Ten items are targeted across five rooms. The rooms are: bathroom, bedroom, garage, kitchen, and living room (all seen below).

iName It targets five rooms typically found in a home

After you select a user (seen below), you can select the scene you want to work with.

Users can use their own photo or select an avatar

A tray of ten items will be located on the bottom of the screen. Users locate the item in the scene by clicking on it. For those that need a little more support, the scene can be changed to black and white. Only the ten images will be highlighted (indicated below).

When the correct image is selected, users can press the green check. Afterwards, you will see the item checked off on the tray located on the bottom of the screen (seen below).

Users can keep track of correctly selected items

If responses are incorrect, users can select the blue button (located near the green check) for cues. The cues include: the first two letters of the image, written description of the item, phrase completion,  auditory presentation of the first syllable of the word, and finally the whole word.

Example of the written description cue

What I liked:
  • Each scene is realistically depicted
  • Several types of cues are available for those that need assistance with retrieving the name of items
  • Performance can be tracked
  • Date on performance can be shared 
  • The app can also be used for those who speak Spanish or Portuguese
iName It is rather straightforward. I can't think of anything I didn't like!

To see iName It in action take a look at the video below:

introduction to iName it for iPad: An app for individuals with Aphasia from Smarty Ears on Vimeo.

For a chance to win a code of iName It enter below. The giveaway ends Friday, April 18th.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Please note that comments will ONLY appear once I've reviewed and approved them (prevents postings from spam-bots). If your comment doesn't appear immediately, wait a few hours. 

Disclosure Statement: I was provided a copy of this app by the developer. No other compensation was provided. This review includes solely my opinions.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Language Trainer {App Review & Giveaway}

I can't believe it's 2014! The year 2013 was chock full of change, so pardon me for not posting anything since November. Since my last post, I have moved from New York to Pennsylvania, begun working with preschoolers (I think about my middle school kiddos almost everyday), and purchased a home! My husband and I are almost settled in our house, this gives me some time to get back to my blog.

Hooray for homeownership!
I'm excited that my first post for the year will be an app review and giveaway from Smarty Ears called Language Trainer ($14.99).

Language Trainer contains four activities (see below) that include: picture identification, picture naming, divergent naming, and sentence completion.

Language Trainer offers 4 tasks that target receptive & expressive language
Picture Identification:
Users can select an avatar or an existing photo. For the picture identification task, you can increase difficulty by incrementally upping the number of images from two (2) all the way up to five (5).

Settings Screen

Users are instructed to point to an item that is presented auditorally.

Users identify the correct image in the picture identification task
Picture Naming
After being presented with an image, users have the ability to record the name of the item. Their responses can be marked as correct, incorrect or cued (this means the user was provided with some assistance).
Example of the picture naming task
Divergent Naming
Much like the difficulty levels for Picture Identification, users of Divergent Naming can choose to name anywhere between two (2) to six (6) items. Directions can be repeated and responses recorded. 
Users can only be correct/incorrect for this divergent naming task 
Sentence Completion
Lastly, the sentence completion task provides users the ability to provide multiple responses to complete a visually and auditorally presented sentence. As with the picture naming task, users are able to have the sentence repeated as well as have their responses recorded.
Sentence Completion Example

What I Liked:
  • Data can be monitored and user performance can be shared with various parties. Additionally, you are able to add any pertinent information and email it with the "Add Notes" option. You can also open historic data in Therapy Report Center, iBooks, Dropbox, print, or just copy.
User performance can be shared all at once or individually
  • There is an option to increase the level of difficulty as you progress. If you are consistently getting items correct when presented in a field of 2, it will be presented in a field of 3. 
  • The items that are presented can be modified via the "Modify Database" (see below).
Presented items can be selected or removed at users discretion 

What I Would Like To See:
  • It would be nice if Language Trainer was more customizable and had the ability to add photos of your own

To view Language Trainer in action take a look at the video below:

Language Trainer by Smarty Ears from Smarty Ears on Vimeo.

App Compatibility:
Language Trainer is compatible with iOS 5.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

Want to try it out for yourself? Please enter below for a chance to win a free download of this app. The giveaway ends Friday, January 31st at 12:01 AM. Good luck!

Please note that comments will ONLY appear once I've reviewed and approved them (prevents postings from spam-bots). If your comment doesn't appear immediately, wait a few hours. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure Statement: I was provided a copy of this app by the developer. No other compensation was provided. This review includes solely my opinions.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Sunny Articulation Phonology Test {Guest App Review}

This post has been long overdue. For those of you who don't follow me on my Facebook page, I have recently relocated from New York to Pennsylvania with my new hubby. Actually, tomorrow will be my first day of work with the 3-5 population! After working with middle schoolers for the past 2 years, I welcome the change that preschoolers offer! Needless to say, my posts will be reflective of the new age group that I will be working with. I hope you all stay tuned as I write about my new adventure!

I'm excited to introduce you to a fantastic SLP that I was fortunate enough to work with during my time at my middle school. Jeanette will be reviewing the Sunny Articulation Phonology Test app. Take it away Jeanette! 

I am very excited to bring you all my very first product review from Smarty Ears! As a pseudo-techy Speech-Language Pathologist, I can appreciate the Sunny Articulation Phonology Test (SAPT) and its uses with the iPad ($49.99). At first glance it appeared to be just another artic app, but as I continued to use it I found that it had a plethora of features.  

First, the app features a video tutorial. It is a quick and easy to understand resource to get you started. Manual information for the SAPT can be found within the app. Like many other apps out there, the SAPT allows you to enter each individual student’s demographic information.  This app separates itself from the competition in that it lends itself to both articulation screenings and a full evaluation of the student’s articulatory repertoire.

Next, is a must-see feature, which includes the ability to change orientation depending upon where the clinician is seated in relation to the student’s seating placement. This allows you to document the student’s articulation while testing is going on.

The screening version contains 30 words and evaluates 65 different phoneme targets including both consonants and consonant blends. Whereas, the full evaluation consists of 46 words with 103 targeted phonemes!

During testing the clinician can readily view the target phoneme as it is written in green. Once the clinician indicates the student’s error, the target phoneme turns red. You also have the option of utilizing the single recording feature to record the student’s production of the picture stimulus. Clinicians are also able to take notes, note the level of intelligibility, and indicate the type of error observed (i.e. distortion, substitution, omission).

As an often-frazzled school-based SLP, I can appreciate the detail that goes into the test report. The report includes:
·      sound development norms
·      detailed descriptions of the student’s articulation errors
·      break down of accuracy across the initial, medial, and final position of the word
·      a review of the types of errors the student made
·      discussion of place, manner, and voicing of target phonemes
·      transcription of the student’s articulation errors

Once the clinician has completed the administration of the screening or test, the scores and reports are immediately available to print or email.

I absolutely LOVE the Sunny Articulation Phonology Test! This app is a valuable resource as it allows for you to screen, evaluate, and track progress over time. I found it very easy to use and extremely detailed in the report it generates. As a school-based SLP I can already see the advantage of using such a test for Response to Intervention (RTI) and elementary level speech screening purposes. The one caveat that I found while reviewing this product is that this is not a standardized assessment tool and therefore cannot be used to meet eligibility criteria. Other than that, this is a product that I would recommend to any speech-language pathologist, especially the techy ones!

I hope you all have enjoyed my very first product review almost as much as I enjoyed writing it!

Thank you,
Jeanette L. Clarke, M.A., CCC-SLP/TSSLD

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Phono Learning Center {Guest App Review}

I'm excited to have Jocelyn over at Ms. Jocelyn Speech do a guest post about Phono Learning Center! 

Phono Learning Center is an app developed by Smarty Ears. This app is designed to help children improve their speech production. I am always looking for new practice materials for articulation and phonological delays, so I was happy to receive the opportunity to try this app out.

To start, click on new session. There you can pick one or more children to target during the session. You can specify each child's specific need. To adjust a child's target, double click on their plate symbol.
image participants (1) image
primary target secondary targets
When you are ready to begin, the session begins with Auditory Bombardment, where balloons rise and students tap on them to identify target words for practice. Then, there are four games that can be used for targeted practice; matching, hot air balloon, puzzle, and basket paper activity. During each game, you can keep track of how the student is doing by tapping on "Got it!," "Almost," "Missed it."


During the matching game, the child is presented with a target word and asked to find it's match.

matching 1

The hot air balloon game presents the child with a target card that they drag in to the hot air balloon basket. As you drag cards to the basket, the balloon inflates with air. Once the balloon is full, it takes off.
hot air 2hot air balloon
The puzzle game presents the child with a target word on a puzzle piece. As they say the word, they drag it on to the puzzle board. The goal is to complete the puzzle.


The basket paper activity, my personal favorite, present the child with a target word on paper. After the child says the word they tap the paper so it rolls up in to a ball. Then, the child slides the ball toward the basket trying to get it to go in.
target basket papercrumpled paper
basket paper well done

A helpful feature is the results page. The app stores student information, but you are also able to email or print the results from each session for your records.
rc RC 1
The most surprising feature to come across was Homework! Yes, this App provides you with printable practice sheets that align with the targets you set for your children in the game.
HW 2 hw 1
Phono Learning Center from Smarty Ears is available for $14.99 on iTunes for the iPad.

Ms. Jocelyn
Disclaimer: A free copy of this app was provided to Ms. Jocelyn Speech for review. No other compensation was provided. The opinions expressed are solely the reviewers and were not influenced by the developer.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Resource Roundup: Planning and Organizing for the Academic Year

To help you all prepare for your return to school, I've gone through all my posts and selected the ones related planning and organization. All these items are free! Here it goes:

1. 9 Parent Tips to Facilitate Their Middle Schooler's Language in the Home {Handout} 
This would be great to include in your welcome letter to parents, as a handout during open school night, or parent teacher conferences. You can read more about the handout here

2. Testing Sign
This door sign was created to deter staff and students from banging on the door while an evaluation is taking place. You can check out the original post here.

3. Lesson Plan Cover
A cute cover to place in the front of your lesson plan binders. Read the original post here.

4. Pass From Class
I make copies of these editable passes and use them whenever one of my students needs to leave my room (and have forgotten their own agendas that serve as a pass). Many schools have their own template, mine does not and I found that these work well. To read more click here

5. Performance Cards 
These editable performance cards are like mini report cards that I provide to each student after their session. After a “grade” is provided on the speech card, the student presents it to their teacher. The teacher then incorporate it into their grade for the day (usually towards participation). Read about more about how I use performance cards here.

I hope you can find some or all of these items useful to you as embark on the new year. Which items do you think will be useful to you?

Happy New School Year!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Expressive {App Review & Giveaway}

When did September get here?! I hope all of you had an enjoyable summer and are refreshed, recharged and ready to roll! For those of you who are experiencing the end of summer blues, you're in luck! Today's post will be a review and giveaway for Expressive from Smarty Ears ($25.99)!

Users select images that appear in the white area to express themselves
This app can be used to communicate by tapping on symbols that in turn produce an audio of the text associated with the image(s).

What I liked:
  • Users are able to "lock" the screen as to prevent those with curious fingers from adding or deleting images.
Users can select the lock feature, pick a desired speech rate,
choose from male/female voices, etc.
  • This app can be customized. If you can't find what you need from the library (contains over 10,000 images), you can add your own image or folder along with an assortment of colors to choose from! 
Add your own image or create your own folder
  • Easy to navigate! This is a pretty straightforward app. For those who are unclear on its use, Smarty Ears has a brief video tutorial to assist.

What I would like to see:
  • It would be great if users were able to record their own voices to correspond to the symbols. The voices used on this app sound rather unnatural and robotic.
  • I would prefer not to have to erase an entire sentence when trying to edit my productions. The ability to delete individual images as opposed to an entire phrase/sentence would add to this apps ease of use.
App Compatibility:

Expressive is compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 5.0 or later. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

To see Expressive in action please take a look at the video below:

Want to try it out for yourself? Please enter below for a chance to win a free download of this app. The giveaway ends Friday, September 6th at 12:01 AM. Good luck!

Please note that comments will ONLY appear once I've reviewed and approved them (prevents postings from spam-bots). If your comment doesn't appear immediately, wait a few hours. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure Statement: I was provided a copy of this app by the developer. No other compensation was provided. This review includes solely my opinions.

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