I’m letting you in on secrets that only my closest friends, colleagues and family know about. These secrets are the stories behind my speech videos. This blog is NOT a sales pitch and there won’t be any “calls to action” to purchase anything. I’m sharing these stories & secrets as a way to share fascinating highlights, along with the joy that went into creating my videos.
The “Hungry Horse Shay” puppet became a character with a personality. This happened when my spouse and others who watched our filming got very upset that Shay was eating crazy things like a fish. I realized that Shay had become more than a puppet – Her character had a personality that people cared about. The best part… kids also care about Shay and they eagerly want to help her by trying harder with their speech turns.
Featuring Shay’s personality for being a “fussy eater”, inspired writing a double purpose for one video story. –On one level, kids think it’s a silly story about a horse with a problem that they help solve. On another level, Shay represents a child who refuses to practice speech. Several strategies for ways to motivate practice are modelled throughout this video until one is successful.
Because every child needs a “personal cheerleader”, the puppet “Kiki” was brought into many of the videos as a mascot. Here’s a secret… Using puppets is a fantastic way that we can all use to encourage kids to engage with us.
I took an Improv comedy class and dressed up to add crazy humour and spontaneity into the videos.
Why this crazy fun?
Kids find watching mistakes and surprise elements fun to watch… Making a mess of the “snowman” snack materials and tossing in a fish puppet character unexpectedly into a scene are examples of what kids laugh at.
Taking along the tropical-loving puppet “Paco” was the perfect addition for the video story that was entirely written and made in Hawaii. We filmed lots of breath-taking scenery because kids enjoy looking at what we enjoy.
A few videos were made using special video effects that we learned to do as we knew these would add to kids’ viewing excitement.
The complexity behind the dual “Let’s Party” videos was beyond what 3 of us, including what my “videographer” coach and “cameraman” spouse thought we were capable of. I was determined we’d “pull it off” no matter how many re-takes it took. What kid doesn’t love a party complete with presents, party games, fun accessories, music & dancing and eating party treats? It was worth our extra effort!
It’s no surprise that each video was created using activities that my own “speech” kids LOVE to do. These activities will give you ideas for what your child might love to do while practicing with you…
a fishing game, playing with toy vehicles, digging inside a “treasure” bin, pretend baking, making a yummy snack, playing at a pool and a beach, playing outdoors, playing in water, blowing bubbles, feeding puppets, listening to noisy sensory toys, party games and more.
Receiving feedback from parents whose kids watched the videos was helpful and… How I really learned to improve my videos was by observing kids while they were watching videos for how they participated and reacted.
Why did I put so much effort and creativity into these speech videos?
Because the best thing I can do for kids is to create something fun that makes them feel special!
What are your thoughts about my decision to share my video stories and secrets?
I look forward to reading your comments and suggestions:)