Articulation, Language, Speech Therapy Themes

The SLP’s Guide to Using “Heimlich’s Chew Chew Train” YouTube Video in Speech Therapy

We just finished up 3 weeks of a bug theme in our speech therapy sessions. I don’t usually carry out my bug theme that long but COVID-19 and teletherapy happened. Now, I am sitting back, wondering why I have I never done this before?! My speech therapy sessions have had to take on an entirely new look. I still haven’t gotten comfortable with it. Some days, I rock it. Other days, I wonder “What the HECK am I doing?” Before this, I did not use much tech in my sessions. Kids are so glued to a tablet or a phone. I felt if I could provide 30-60 minutes a week of actual human engagement then I was doing something good. Fast forward to April 2020 and that is what I am relying on…TECHNOLOGY! If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em, right?

This week, I used something new in my sessions that I may very well carry over when I go back to in home therapy. Yeah, it worked that great! At the start of each session, I would tell the kids what the plan was for our session. I told them their reward was a trip to Disney to ride “the caterpillar ride.” I got the “this lady is crazy” face more than once. (That’s ok. I am used to it by now.) It proved to be an awesome reward!

Here’s the video I used was for “Heimlich’s Chew Chew Train.” It was a POV (point of view) video, meaning the person filming makes it seem as if you are actually on the ride. The total video is a little less than 4 minutes long. However, I would fast forward through some parts and pause in other parts to ask my questions. This video is really great for your kiddos working on /k/ sounds. I could target words like “caterpillar,” “candy corn,” “apple core,” “cookies,” “candy,” and “cupcake” as we rode the train. For my language clients, we could target concepts like “around,” “through,” “in/out” and “beside.” You can find the cheat sheet here with questions and time stamps to use with your language clients. When it was time for me to continue playing the video, I cued the child with “Let’s tell caterpillar to go. Ready, set…” and I let the child finish with “GO!”

Click the link above to grab this freebie!

This ended up being my most favorite activity of the week! I would put my hands up in the air as if I was on a roller coaster and let out a “WHOOOO!” as we started. I almost shot a video of myself during a session to show you a visual but HIPAA… The point is sell the ride as if you are really there! This particular ride no longer exists at Disneyland. The exhibit with “A Bug’s Life” was completely taken out from what I can tell in my research.

I can’t wait to start our superhero theme next week! Guess I will spend the weekend shuffling through YouTube videos for the perfect ride!!

Have you used theme park ride videos in your sessions? How did they work for you?

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