The summer months move by quickly, and before you know it, it will be time to start the new academic year. The more that is planned ahead of time, the less chaotic it will be with back-to-school stress added in. Some students may have received speech and language sessions over the summer, while others may have had the time off. In addition to this, new students will be added to those that you have been working with.
Reassessment Time for All
Use the last few weeks of summer to evaluate the kids you have been consistently working with. Check to see how they are progressing with their IEP goals and complete any office paperwork that may need to be submitted to school districts. It’s also important to meet with families to go over testing or other assessments that you have done with their children. Break down reports so they are able to understand them. Explain how their child is progressing toward their individual goals. Come up with strategies from summer session that may work well in the upcoming year and others that are best to skip next time around.
Resource Roundup and More
Take time to go through your files and lesson plans from the past. Freshen up lessons that worked well with students before and add some new twists. Many times you can change a few focus points and make them work for different themes or goals. Be sure to see how they may or may not align with the students that you will be working with in the year ahead. Make a list of items that you may need based on the age groups and specific speech and language goals that you will be working on. August is the best time to take advantage of back to school supplies. Stock up on crayons, index cards, scissors, pencils, plastic supply boxes, folders, and anything else that may come in handy. After Labor Day, look at the clearance racks for additional bargains that may be helpful during your sessions.
Reaching Out to Multilingual Families
If you are able to find out your schedule ahead of time take time to look over each child’s files to get more specific planning done. Use index cards for each child containing the areas that you will be focusing on the most. This will be good to have when in group sessions and working together. Spend additional time looking over the needs of multilingual children. What new resources may be available to be most successful with these children and their families? Do you need to touch base with families before school begins? It may be a great time to coordinate with them on the best way to communicate and catch up with recent events before everyone is too distracted when school begins.
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