Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Self regulation on the road this holiday

At ASHA Convention this past week (some recaps to come), I was happy to record another podcast conversation with JD Gray of ASHA Voices, this time on self-regulation. We touched on mindful apps SLPs can use for themselves and as language/self-regulation activities for our students, but I always like simple tricks too.

For example, since I got a car with bluetooth, this has offered me lots of enjoyment on the road (music, podcasts, etc). But have you noticed the annoying habit when bluetoothing or USB connecting of your radio blasting the first song on your music list? In my case, it was "Aaron Burr, Sir" from Hamilton. "Aa" puts it first alphabetically. It made me actually hate the song eventually, though I love the musical. Regular jarring annoyance was eliminated by a simple trick after researching this problem, which I discovered many friends shared. Go to your music or iTunes app and download the sure-to-be-alphabetically-first (well worth the $.99) "A a a a a Very Good Song." It's like 10 minutes of silence, so when you connect your phone to your car, now you will hear what was playing or blessed, calming silence. You'll thank yourself, and your passengers will too.

Friday, November 15, 2019

Traveling to ASHA (or otherwise traveling)? Check out these two tools...

For me, planning + situational information = self-regulation + productivity + life is good.

When planning travel, I always TripIt. As you make any reservations and receive your confirmation emails about them, once you have opened a free TripIt account, you can forward them to What results is a sequenced itinerary with flights, hotels, rental cars and other pieces you may have arranged. Simply a lifesaver. TripIt also generally lets you check into flights from your itinerary. You can access it via web or available mobile apps.

Another indispensable tool is FlightAware. Use FlightAware (via the website, which works perfectly well on mobile, but apps are also available for free) to track not only the status of your flight, but if you are super anxious like me, also the status of the INCOMING PLANE (click on Where is my plane now?) Often this information is just not provided to you by airlines, so it is very reassuring. Or sometimes not.

Hope you have a great trip if you are going, and I'd love to see you at sessions 1048, 1338, and or 1836!

Considering your professional development schedule this year? Check out Sean's offerings for training sessions.

Friday, November 8, 2019

Add YouTube Clips to Google Slides

As Google Apps (G-Suite) becomes more ubiquitous in school settings, it becomes more useful for SLPs to tap into the power of these tools. Whether conducting in-class therapy activities, or via a small group with your laptop, or even in my case frequently in the private practice setting in a room with an Apple TV, having a visual "space" to explore contexts, language, and strategies is important. Using Google Slides allows you that space- I often encourage thinking about presentation creators flexibly, as you don't need to be creating a whole series of slides or a "PowerPoint." It's just a space, and one that is much more easy to work with than that of a word processor, because of the whole fitting things into paragraphs aspect (and the nightmare of trying to insert and place an image in a doc as opposed to a slide).

Another tool you can consider within Google Slides is the ability to insert a YouTube clip.

On a Google Slide, that's Insert > Video > Search, which searches YouTube.

Once onscreen, you may want to drag the video corners to make a bit larger.

Doing this has a number of advantages:
a) You can place helpful videos into lesson sequences within your Google Slides "decks" and therefore have them for subsequent groups, years, etc
b) Inserting the video here on a slide removes ads (sometimes) and distracting sidebar content
c) Your following slides can be a place to graphically/visually explore the ideas of the video in discussion with the group (e.g, a story map, see my post A Story of Shapes.

Considering your professional development schedule this year? Check out Sean's offerings for training sessions.