Thursday, December 20, 2012

My Speech Folders

It seems that organization is always on my mind. I am always trying to find ways to streamline paperwork and keep information at my finger tips.  Having just finished writing progress reports, I was once again reminded that organization skills are key for success as a SLP.  I think that Universities should consider making Organization 101 a requirement for all speech/language graduate students.  As 2012 comes to a close, and we move forward into 2013, I wanted to share another organizational tip with you all. 

In a recent post, I discussed the forms that I use to keep parents informed about our speech sessions.  Today, I want to take some time to talk to you about how I send home information to parents.  All of my students have speech folders.  Yes, I said speech folders.  I know it is a bit of an "old fashioned" concept, especially in this digital age.   I realized exactly how old fashioned my speech folders are when my husband saw them and said they reminded him of the speech folders he had as a child with a frontal lisp.   

Old fashioned or not, I have found that speech folders are an easy way to communicate with parents.  While many of us have entered the digital age, our students still come to school with backpacks and parents search those backpacks for information about their children's school days.  My speech folders are created from simple 2 pocket folders that I purchased for very little money in August during the back to school sales. Because I work with young students, I wanted to put something cute on the cover of the folder.  After seeing many different folders for school organization on Pinterest, I came up with the idea of creating O.W.L.S folders for speech. 

O.W.L.S, stands for Our Weekly Lessons for Speech/Language.  Here is the graphic that I made for the front of the folders:

Inside each folder, I place information that explains the concept of the O.W.L.S folder.  I also include a school calendar and general information about myself and my experience as a SLP.  Most of my students received their folders at the start of the school year, however, I made extra folders so that I could use them with new students throughout the year. Each time a new student enters my caseload, I give them an O.W.L.S folder.
If you would like to create your own O.W.L.S folders, you can download my folder cover and parent letters here.  In the download I have included two different parent letters.  One letter is suitable for younger students and the other is geared toward older students.  The older student letter discusses student goal setting and progress tracking. I have also included forms for older students to write their speech/language goals and chart their own progress. 
As we move forward into the New Year, I have once again resolved to become more organized.  If you have similar resolutions on your mind, I hope you will download and use the O.W.L.S folders to keep yourself and your students more organized in 2013. 
That's all from me for today.  Until next year... :)


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