Getting Ready to Start a New Academic Year in SLP
The summer months move quickly, and before you know it, a new academic year will begin. Take a little time before everything gets hectic to stop and refocus on a few items for the upcoming year. While speech therapy may not have ended over the summer months for some children, others will be coming back in August and September after time off. In addition to this, new students will also begin working with you in the upcoming year.
Reassess Current Students from the Summer
It goes without saying that anyone that has received summer speech needs to be evaluated to see where they are at the end of the summer. Review files to compare goals on IEPs for the summer session. Be clear on what is expected from schools or others via reports or other means. Take time to share information with parents so they are aware of movement toward long term speech and language goals. Utilize information from the summer sessions to figure out the ways that worked best with the children for future time together.
Items to Review for the Year Ahead
While you may not know your schedule for the year ahead, you will likely know most of the children that you will be working with. Take time to look at all of their files to begin to plan lessons. To assist you when writing lesson plans, make index cards with each child and the areas that you need to work on the most. This will help when coordinating items during the school year, especially for group sessions.
Take time to review the different multilingual needs of the children you are working with. Do you need to touch base with their families before the school year begins? Look into resources that will help with each of the individual needs of the students within your sessions. It may also be a good time to freshen up on ways to communicate with them and to incorporate them in the process of working toward their child’s goals.
Shop for Supplies and Freshen-up Resources
The weeks leading to the start of the school year are a fantastic time to shop for supplies. Think about the ages of the children you are working with and make lists of items that you know you may need. This is the best time to get crayons, markers, scissors, pencils, plastic supply boxes, and other items. Look at online ads and those in the newspaper to see where you should head. Be sure to check out items in the sales racks after school begins for additional bargains that may help.
Think outside of the box for items that you may need. Look at seasonal sale racks for things that you may be able to re-purpose during the school. Think back to the post about pinwheels as an example that could be utilized again in multiple ways. In addition to this, take a look at board games and other items that may be able to be retooled for your needs. It is always a great idea to freshen-up your resources and look back at lesson plans while thinking about the year ahead. Everything you do now will help you later on when you are working with more students, so organization is very important.