Increasing Mean Length of Utterance Activity Building Phrases and Sentences

Susan Berkowitz
Grade Levels
Not Grade Specific
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41 pages
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Susan Berkowitz


Increasing the length of a student’s typical response and increasing his phrase and sentence complexity are often skills that SLPs work on in speech therapy with a wide variety of students. Most of the students I see use single word responses, whether they speak or use AAC.

When I first started working as a SLP in the 1970’s I had a set of pictures that were very much like coloring book pages, each of which depicted a single action being performed by a person.

The set was meant to be used over and over on a continuum of targets, from single word responses to complete, if simple, sentences.

I continue to work with similar groups of students who need the same kind of systematic instruction targeting increasing mean length of utterance/response.

In addition to providing intervention throughout the day in the natural environment and naturally occurring contexts, we provide additional practice in speech-language therapy sessions, to maximize the number of opportunities the student has to practice the structure(s).

Here is a set of 28 action pictures, with a progression of targets.

• There are also pacing boards for students to track each word as they produce it,

and icons to use to construct sentences for students who don't speak or need visual cues.

• Print the pages 5-32 as two sided, so that the targets are on the reverse side of each picture. This way you can indicate the target you are working on and send these home for practice homework, or have a graduate student or SLPA work with your students.

• Alternatively, print them as separate pages, then place matching pages facing each other, punch holes, and place in a notebook this way. Then, when you present them to the student, the image faces him, while you can see the targets.

• You can also use this as an informal assessment measure, then indicate the date begun and date mastered for each of the targets, to track progress.

If you like this, you might also like other syntax resources, such as:

Expanding Sentences and Interactive Sentence Completion with Colors

Check my tore for additional resources HERE

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41 pages
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