Read with Me PD: Drive by Daniel H. Pink

Synopsis: “Most people believe that the best way to motivate is with rewards like money—the carrot-and-stick approach. That’s a mistake, says Daniel H. Pink (author of To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Motivating Others). In this provocative and persuasive new book, he asserts that the secret to high performance and satisfaction-at work, at school, and at home—is the deeply human need to direct our own lives, to learn and create new things, and to do better by ourselves and our world.

Drawing on four decades of scientific research on human motivation, Pink exposes the mismatch between what science knows and what business does—and how that affects every aspect of life. He examines the three elements of true motivation—autonomy, mastery, and purpose-and offers smart and surprising techniques for putting these into action in a unique book that will change how we think and transform how we live.”

The big focus of Drive is that all people are born curious, intrinsically motivated, and in desire of autonomy. It is the focus on extrinsic rewards that turns us into mice in a maze just seeking out that cube of cheese.

Below are my biggest takeaways as a pediatric SLP from Drive by Daniel H. Pink. If you see something interesting, please check this book out for much more information and specific research studies from which this information is derived.

Extrinsic Motivation: “if, then” reward systems

When an extrinsic reward is offered before a task has even begun, the task is immediately perceived as undesirable. Perceiving a task as undesirable before even attempting it takes away the autonomy of possibly finding joy, interest, or challenge in the task. If you are primed to view the task as undesirable, you are unlikely to meaningfully engage in the activity in the first place and you are less likely to pursue additional opportunities to engage in the task.

Lepper et. al (1973) conducted a study on preschool-age children, who demonstrated a personal preference for drawing. The children were divided into three groups. Group one was promised a reward after the study, group two was given a surprise reward after the study, and group three had no rewards mentioned. All children were asked to draw a picture and then given their reward or not depending on which group they were assigned. The children were then watched over several weeks to see how much they would continue to pursue opportunities to draw. The results of the study indicated that those children promised a reward showed a significant decrease in intrinsic motivation to pursue opportunities to draw. They actually chose to draw half as many times as they did prior to the study.

Several research studies demonstrated that offers of extrinsic reward narrowed the person’s focus, which negatively impacted their productivity, creativity, flexible thinking, and problem solving abilities. Offered a reward, the person simply rushes to reach the end result for the reward, which decreases their opportunity for long term learning and minimizes carryover of skills.

Intrinsic Motivation: “Now that” reward systems

“Now that” rewards are basically naturalistic consequences and specific positive feedback that follow completion of a task. “Now that we finished retelling the story, let’s pick out a new book.” “Now that you finished saying that word, I noticed you kept trying when it was difficult to place your tongue in the correct position to make the /r/ sound.”

In the Lepper et. al (1973) study referenced above, the children who were randomly given a reward after they finished drawing or who were given no reward showed no significant changes to their level of intrinsic motivation.

For “now that” rewards to be successful, they should arise naturally after the task has been completed. The consequence should be something that would naturally follow, like a break or a special interest, rather than a piece of candy or a small trinket. Specific feedback can also serve as a natural consequence. Feedback is most beneficial when it provides specific information about what the child did successfully. (For more information on providing specific feedback, check out this post!)

Have you read Drive by Daniel H. Pink? What were your takeaways?

Thanks for reading!

February Therapy Plans

Happy February!

This month I will be using a Valentine’s Day theme! I plan to use it for the whole month, even once Valentine’s Day has passed. The root of Valentine’s Day is friendship and that is theme to celebrate for a whole month!

I love using the Valentine’s Day theme to target the functional skills of making friends and sending mail!

Head on over to my freebie library to download your copy of the February Speech Therapy Ideas sheet with clickable links to picture books, articles, web-based games, videos, & Seldom Speechless resources. All activities are great for teletherapy or in-person and best for preschool & elementary-aged kiddos!

Thanks for reading!

Short Videos for Speech Therapy

I love to use short videos in speech therapy sessions to spark discussion and increase engagement. Often these videos are wordless or have minimal dialogue, which allows the students to make inferences, predictions, and use descriptive language.

Before we get to the list. I want to familiarize you with three helpful resources to bring these videos to the next level.

Safe Youtube

If you are worried about inappropriate advertisements popping up or the video ending and automatically playing something inappropriate next, paste the YouTube link into and it will generate a safe version of the video hosted off of YouTube, so you do not have to worry about students seeing advertisements or content that you have not approved.


Edpuzzle allows you to add strategic pauses in videos with built in question prompts. You can also trim videos to remove content inappropriate or irrelevant to your students. I have included an example I made below. You can sign up for a free account to make twenty of your own videos, but you also get unlimited access to tons of videos made by other educators.

Any Video/Article Visual Organizers for Describing and Critical Thinking

No time to prep? I feel ya! I have this no-print visual organizer Boom Card Deck bookmarked on my iPad for quick, engaging, language rich sessions. It includes visual organizers for describing using attributes, describing using key info, compare/contrast, sorting important vs. unimportant details, story retell, summarizing fiction stories, summarizing non-fiction stories, and inferencing.

Check it out here.

List of Short Videos for Speech Therapy

This is a growing list of animated shorts available on YouTube. I have tried to organize the videos by theme for easy planning. The title of the video is a direct link to the video. These links are subject to change, please preview content before sharing it with your students. It is your responsibility to ensure appropriateness of the content for your students.

Click on the playlist icon in the top right of the video to see all videos included on the playlist. You can bookmark this playlist on YouTube for quick access to animated shorts for speech therapy.


Preheated: A boy decides to make a birthday cake for his eccentric scientist father, but accidentally spills one of his dad’s experiments and ends up with super hot hands! Use this video to target predicting, sequencing, inferencing, describing, and summarizing.


Automne: This animated reimagines the changing of the seasons by creating seasonal characters, who paint their season on to a scale model of the Earth when it is their turn. Great for working on comparing and describing the different seasons.

Geri’s Game Pixar Short: Geri is enjoying a competitive game of chess in the park…against himself. Great for inferencing, describing, and identifying emotions.

Autumn Leaves: Cute, super short film about a little boy enjoying the leaves in the fall! Great for sparking discussion about fall and making simple predictions!

Autumn Squirrel: Silly video about a squirrel trying to keep the Autumn chill out of his tree house. Great for discussing problem solving and cause/effect.

Back to School

Clocky: Cute story of a little alarm clock getting ready to ring for the first time. Great for perspective taking, describing, and problem solving.

Afternoon Class: A boy fights the urge to fall asleep during a boring afternoon class. The video features excellent imagery for using figurative language! Also great for perspective taking and cause/effect.

Acceptance & Friendship

Alike: This is a beautiful animated short with the message that it is okay to be different from others! Great for working on describing, cause/effect, perspective taking, summarizing, and predicting!

Invisible Animated Short: Two chameleons are lonely at a school dance. One chameleon wants to ask the other to dance, but he is too nervous and every time he tries something goes wrong. Great for working on summarizing narrative events, perspective taking, identifying emotions, inferencing, and problem solving.

Snack Attack: This video is awesome for working on many different social skills! The older lady in this story has the wrong perspective and she completely over reacts! Awesome for working on perspective taking, prediction, describing, cause/effect, personal space, summarizing!


Hair Love: This is a beautiful, heart-warming story about perseverance! Great for working on describing, predicting, perspective taking, and problem solving.

One Small Step: Luna Chu wants to be an astronaut more than anything! Follow along on her journey from childhood to the moon! Great for perspective taking, predicting, describing.

Content Warning: Luna’s father passes away during the story. She comes home to find his can left on the floor and the lights off in the house. Then, the animator shows her at his grave and destroying her bedroom in grief. The loss of her father renews her desire to work hard to become an astronaut.

Scarlett: Scarlett is a young girl with an amputated leg and a lot of perseverance! Great for working on perspective taking, summarizing, and describing!

Pip: Pip is ready to become a guide dog for the visually impaired, but the training is much harder than expected. Nevertheless, Pip perseveres and becomes a true hero. Perfect for targeting describing, compare/contrast, summarizing, and problem solving.


Lucas the Spider Animated Shorts : Lucas is an adorable Spider and everything is new and exciting to him!

Simon’s Cat in Spooky Tales: Simon’s Cat videos are terrific for inferencing and summarizing!


Simon’s Sister’s Dog in Fed Up : This one will get your student’s laughing as this poor hungry dog gets himself into a predicament. Great for inferencing and summarizing. Target figurative language with the title as well.

Simon’s Cat in Festive Feast & Other Cat Capers:

Mr. Indifferent: Great for discussing empathy, cause-effect, character development, and summarizing.

Coin Operated: This one is very silly. Target describing, problem solving, cause/effect, and summarizing using this video.

Kid President’s 25 Reasons to Be Thankful: This video is a helpful example for students as they try to brainstorm their own gratitude list.

Salt: This is my favorite Thanksgiving video. It is perfect for targeting cause/effect, sequencing, describing, perspective taking, summarizing, & predicting.


Under the Winter Sun: Two snowman have a fun snow day until the sun begins to rise. Great for predicting, describing, cause/effect, and summarizing.

Hey Deer: Ever wonder what it would be like to live inside of a snowglobe? This short answers that question. Great for predicting, inferencing, and summarizing.


The Present: A young amputee receives a puppy with three legs from his mom. This video shows the boy going from displaced frustration and anger toward the dog to care and compassion. It is a good conversation starter regarding empathy and perspective taking. USe this video to target summarizing, describing, and inferencing.

Downtown: Cute animated short about a town that has lost all of its color and a little house that brings the spirit of christmas. Use to describe, compare/contrast, predict, infer, and summarize.

A Shorter Letter: Cute video that helps kids understand you do not always get the toys you want for Christmas. Good for sparking discussions about describing, compare/contrast, and summarizing.


Here’s the Plan: This video is definitely for a more mature student group. It references divorce and includes a scene where one of the character accidentally gets a bloody nose. This video is good for discussing cause-effect, compare/contrast, and inferencing.

Preheated: A boy decides to make a birthday cake for his eccentric scientist father, but accidentally spills one of his dad’s experiments and ends up with super hot hands! Use this video to target predicting, sequencing, inferencing, describing, and summarizing.

Salt: This is my favorite Thanksgiving video. It is perfect for targeting cause/effect, sequencing, describing, perspective taking, summarizing, & predicting.


Petals Animated Short: This is the story of two young humanized animals with different levels of respect for the environment. Highlights the impact people can have on the environment. Great for inferencing, making predictions, identifying cause & effect, compare/contrast, describing, and summarizing.

Sweet Cocoon Animated Short: A very chubby caterpillar cannot fit into his cocoon. A few of his buddies help him out. Great for working on summarizing narrative events, identifying cause & effect, problem solving, and inferencing.

The Spark & The Time Shop: These Chik-fil-a commercials are adorable! They help children see the true meaning of christmas and are great for inferencing, predicting, and summarizing. Time shop includes some funny figurative language examples.

The Gift: A boy asks Santa for an elf and the elf is afraid of being someone’s toy. This little video is fun and festive, and great for targeting describing, compare/contrast, perspective taking, and summarizing.


Watermelon a Cautionary Tale: A boy imagines what if you really do turn into a watermelon when you eat the watermelon seeds. Great for discussing figures of speech (i.e., do you really become a watermelon? No. You may just get a stomach ache.)

Content Warning: Some of the imagery of becoming a watermelon may be scary for some students.

Beach/ Ocean

Piper Pixar Animated Short: Adorable animation of a baby sandpiper adventuring out of his nest to get his own food. Great for describing, summarizing, and problem solving.

Trouble in Paradise: This crab does not know what a coconut is and he wants it far away from his home! Great for inferencing and describing.

Bottle Animated Short: Cute wordless story of a sandman and a snowman who communicate by sending things back and forth in a bottle over the ocean. Great for working on describing and compare/contrast.

The Legend of the Crab Phare: I love this sweet video. The Legendary Crab Phare likes to collect ships as they pass by. As he gets older it is harder for him to move, so he becomes sedentary causing him to appear as an island in the middle of the ocean. Eventually, a society forms on top of him until one day he molts and begins again. So many inferencing opportunities. Great for working on describing, inferencing, and summarizing.

Taking the Plunge Animated Short: Cute video about a nervous guy, who accidentally drops his engagement ring into the ocean just before he took the plunge to propose causing him to actually take the plunge to find the ring. Great for working on non-literal language, inferencing, describing, summarizing, and problem solving.


Roughin’ It Mickey Mouse Short: Mickey, Goofy, and Donald go camping, but they have very different ideas of what roughing it means. Great for working on compare/contrast, describing, identifying cause/effect, and summarizing.

Content Warning: Mickey references being in nature’s bosom in the first ten seconds. I personally just start the video after to avoid teaching this particular vocabulary word. Also, Mickey is attacked by forest animals very time, so may view the tussle as violent.

Zoo Animals

Rollin’ Wild Animated Short: What if jungle animals were like blown up balloons? Very entertaining. Great for working on predicting, identifying cause & effect and problem solving.

Catch it! Animated Short: The meerkat’s sacred fruit is stolen by a vulture! How will the meerkat’s get it back? Great for working on inferencing, predicting, problem solving, and summarizing.

We Love Animals Animated Short: A trip to the zoo shown from the perspective of the animals inside their small enclosures. Very sad and will spark big discussions about animal care. Great for working on inferencing and summarizing.

Safari, So Good Mickey Mouse Short: Mickey and Minnie are left behind by their tour bus in the wild, but they make the most of enjoying the plains and the animals. Great for working on summarizing, inferencing, describing, understanding indirect language, and identifying cause & effect.

Thanks for reading!

Professional & Student Learning Goals for SLPs

It is true that every work setting has its pros and cons. It is also true that working in the school setting is not for everyone (according to my advisor in graduate school, schools are where the less ambitious SLPs end up *exasperated sigh*). I personally LOVE working in the schools! What I do not love is being a part of the teacher evaluation process.

I believe it is important to continually be challenged and encouraged to grow in our field. I just wish the evaluation process for SLPs in the school was more specific to our particular area of expertise. Regardless, every October I find myself drafting the perfect professional goals.

When I started in the schools, my CF supervisor told me to set a professional goal that was realistic. Now I know, you are probably thinking that IS what the “R” in SMART stands for, but let me explain further. Realistic meaning, something you are already doing, but just need a little motivation to finalize or fine tune. Professional goal setting season is not the time to plan a lofty over-haul in your speech room. Please, be realistic with yourself!

I know when I started out, I turned to some of my favorite SLP bloggers for ideas. So, I wanted to log my goals here, for future reference and to help others:


Student Learning Goal 

By the end of the 2017-2018 school year, my K-3 students will demonstrate at least moderate growth in using attributes to describe familiar nouns in a structured therapy setting.

  • By the end of September, 2017, I will administer a pre-test to all K-3 students on my caseload with objectives on their IEP pertaining to describing to determine their individual baselines in providing attributes when describing a given noun.
  • Throughout the 2017-2018 school year, I will implement a multi-sensory, systematic method of describing items by attributes. During once or twice weekly language therapy sessions, students will receive direct instruction, guided practice, and independent opportunities to utilize targeted strategies in order to improve their describing skills.
  • By November 17, 2017, I will document student progress towards meeting their describing learning objectives on their progress reports.
  • By March 16, 2018, I will document student progress towards meeting their describing learning objectives on their progress reports.
  • By June 1, 2018, I will administer a post-test to the same set of students to determine their growth in providing attributes when describing a given noun.

Professional Practice Goal

By the end of the 2017-2018 school year, I will build up Tier I speech/language interventions in the kindergarten general education classrooms as part of the Response to Intervention (RTI) model to provide universal support to all students in foundational speech and language skills and improve early identification of students in need of more targeted interventions.

  • In Fall, 2017, I will send out a survey to all of the kindergarten classroom teachers to identify the areas of speech/language development (e.g., following 2 step directions, wh-questions, story re-tell, turn-taking/topic maintenance, phonological awareness, basic concepts, vocabulary, early grammar) in which most of their students will benefit, and which day/time would work best for their schedule.
  • By November 30, 2017, I will collaborate with two kindergarten classroom teachers to plan and implement one universal language lesson in each classroom.
  • By December 7, 2017, I will meet with the kindergarten classroom teachers to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the universal language lesson and identify changes that can be made to increase its educational efficacy moving forward.
  • By March 2, 2018, I will collaborate with the kindergarten classroom teachers to plan and implement at least one universal language lesson per classroom during the second term of the school year.
  • By March 9, 2018, I will meet with the kindergarten classroom teachers to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the universal language lessons, discuss the impact of the lessons on the students’ speech and language skills, and offer carry-over strategies for the classroom.
  • By May 25, 2018, I will collaborate with the kindergarten classroom teachers to plan and implement at least two universal language lessons per classroom during the third term of the school year.
  • By June 1, 2018, I will meet with all of the kindergarten classroom teachers to evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the universal language lessons, discuss the impact of the lessons on the students’ speech and language skills, and select topics for the beginning of the 2018-2019 school year.


Student Learning Goal 

By the end of the 2018-2019 school year, my students will demonstrate at least moderate growth in knowledge and understanding of speech/language goals by stating their individualized targets at the end of each session with 80% accuracy in four out of five sessions.

  • At the start of the school year, I will create goal visuals in student-friendly language specific to each student to be displayed in front of the student during sessions as a visual reminder of their speech-language targets. During each therapy session, I will review which goals we will be working on, and then at the end of the session each student will tell what was targeted.
  • After initial familiarization with speech/language targets, I will have each student fill out an individual profile that lists his/her general goal areas and why these areas are important. These will be displayed in the therapy room and reviewed periodically throughout the year as needed.
  • I will have my students working on articulation, phonology, and/or fluency fill out a self-rating scale at the beginning and end of the school year to help them think about why working on speech is important and monitor the emotional impact of these disorder types.
  • I will use progress monitoring checks at least once per trimester to assess student progress with their individual goals. I will review progress individually with each student, and he/she will review their goals and then update their personal goal graph sheet with their progress each trimester.

Professional Practice Goal 

During the current school year, I will increase my collaboration with other school professionals and explore new therapy approaches to help provide the least restrictive environment for my students.

  • At the start of the school year, I will provide packets of information to each teacher, regarding each of their specific students on my caseload, their disorders and goals, and possible academic impact.
  • I will collaborate with at least one general or special education teacher to plan and execute at least one co-taught inclusion lesson or center time in each trimester of the school year.
  • I will collaborate with my IEP students’ classroom teachers to conduct at least one supplementary whole-class or small-group speech/language support lesson in each trimester. We will meet to determine which classrooms would benefit the most, which available times work best with my existing therapy schedule, and which topics would most benefit the students.
  • I will collaborate with the kindergarten teachers to conduct at least two supplementary whole-class speech/language support lessons per kindergarten classroom each trimester. We will meet before and after each lesson to discuss areas of concerns and students in need of more support.
  • I will trial the “5 Minute Articulation” approach with at least 5 different students this year in order to determine if shorter, more frequent sessions are more effective than being pulled out from the classroom for traditional, longer therapy sessions.


Student Learning Goal

By the end of the 2019-2020 school year, my K-3 students will demonstrate moderate growth in the area of following directions by participating in individualized intervention in which evidence-based strategies and targets for following directions are addressed (e.g., defining instructional verbs, expanding concept knowledge, improving sequencing, and developing auditory processing strategies).

  • I will research evidence-based intervention targets and strategies in the skill area of following directions.
  • I will generate a list of common instructional verbs and concepts used in K-3 classrooms to serve as functional targets during language intervention sessions.
  • At the beginning of the school year, I will assess each student’s baseline performance using a pre-test consisting of structured following directions tasks (e.g.,defining instructional verbs; identifying spatial, quantitative, and temporal concepts; sequencing procedural events; and application of auditory processing strategies).
  • By second term, I will provide the classroom teacher of each student with visuals and resources regarding the vocabulary, concepts, and strategies being taught in the language intervention sessions to support generalization.
  • Each trimester, I will assess student progress toward acquisition of all four foundations of following directions (i.e., instructional vocabulary, concept knowledge, sequencing ability, and knowledge of auditory processing strategies).
  • In May 2020, I will administer a post-test consisting of structured following directions tasks (e.g.,defining instructional verbs; identifying spatial, quantitative, and temporal concepts; sequencing procedural events; and application of auditory processing strategies) to assess student progress.

Professional Practice Goal

During the current school year, the speech/language department will improve communication with parents and guardians in order to encourage generalization of speech/language targets to the home and in the community.

  • By October 2019, we will create individual educator pages on the Schools website featuring our contact information and a description of my role.
  • Throughout the school year, we will send home monthly newsletters, which will include current focuses in the therapy room, thematic ideas for supporting positive communication skills at home, and a link to our individual educator page.
  • By mid-year, we will add parent-friendly resources and references to our educator pages providing information about speech/language disorders, accommodations, and classroom impact.
  • By mid-year, we will add home practice ideas for each area of speech-language pathology (i.e., articulation, receptive language, expressive language, fluency) to our educator pages.


Student Learning Goal

By the end of the 2020-2021 school year, my students with phonological IEP objectives will demonstrate moderate growth in the remediation of targeted phonological processes.

  • By September 2020, I will identify students on my caseload who are candidates for a phonological approach to speech sound intervention.
  • By October 2020, I will research two phonological approaches for speech sound intervention (e.g., complexity approach, cycles approach, multiple oppositions, minimal pairs, maximal oppositions, treatment of the empty set, etc.)
  • By November 2020, I will assign the most appropriate phonological approach to each identified student and collect baseline data using a standard articulation probe.
  • Every six weeks, I will assess student progress using their assigned phonological approach by readministering the standard articulation probe.
  • By February 2021, I will provide each identified student a home practice program to support generalization.
  • By June 2021, I will evaluate the effectiveness of the two new phonological approaches to speech sound intervention used during this school year by readministering the standard articulation probe and comparing the identified students’ performance to their performance on the baseline probe.

Professional Practice Goal

During the current school year, the speech/language department will expand knowledge and use of various technology resources and platforms for speech/language therapy in order to adapt and improve quality of intervention.

  • By September 2020, each SLP will complete ten hours of professional development in the area of telepractice.
  • By November 2020, the speech/language department will research five new technology resources and select at least three to implement in speech/language therapy sessions.
  • By March 2021, each SLP will use at least three new technology resources a minumum of three times each in direct or asynchronous speech/language therapy sessions.
  • By June 2021, the speech/language department will evaluate the effectiveness of each technology resource using a five-point scale for student engagement, ease of use, and range of use.

Thanks for reading!