Saturday, March 24, 2018

Free Camping Themed Dot Pages!

Hey Friends! I'm swinging by the blog today to share another goodie that can be found in my free resource library! My newsletter subscribers have exclusive access to this library. If you're interested in receiving weekly emails from me about blog updates, sales, new resources, ideas, and more then you can sign up by clicking HERE!
It's no secret - I'm obsessed with using bingo daubers in speech therapy! They're definitely my favorite school supplies! They're novel, fun, and they're super motivating.

Camping is one of my favorite themes so I had to whip up some fun reinforcement pages! There are so many ways you can use dot pages in your speech room or classroom! Since they are open-ended they can be used for any skill!

Here are some skills you can target:
1. Articulation students can write their target words inside the circles OR they can even draw pictures of their target words!
2. Language students can write vocabulary words (synonyms, antonyms, etc) and grammar targets like plurals or pronouns inside the circles!
3. Fluency students can write target words for easy onsets/light contacts inside their circles.
4. Fluency students can use the pages as pacing boards. They can touch each dot as they are practicing a flexible rate.
5. You can write minimal pairs inside the circles for phonology students.
There are also a ton of different ways you can utilize these sheets.

-Slip them into dry erase sleeves to make play dough smash mats. After a student practices, then they can smash some dough on the circles!
-Re-use the same pages throughout the day by placing them in dry erase sleeves. Students can write on them with dry erase markers.
You can even play roll and cover games! Just add some tiny erasers and a coin. Student flips the coin and if they get tails they can cover one circle and if they get heads they can cover two circles!
You can also combine all of these ideas into a single session. This ensures lots of variety for the kids that need it!

First, have students color their page and write in their target words and then they can play a roll and cover game. Then they can dab all of their words with the bingo dauber... after it dries, make it into a smash mat! These sheets are super versatile!

If you would like these free open-ended sheets then subscribe to my newsletter! After you subscribe, you'll receive a confirmation email that contains a link and password to all of the goodies! I also add new freebies into the library on a regular basis.

Thank you for stopping by! Have a wonderful day!

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Bug Theme in Speech Therapy

Happy Theme Thursday! Spring is finally here (even if Mother Nature didn't get the memo) and I'm so excited to talk about one of my favorite themes - bugs! Bugs is such a fun theme for spring and summer speech therapy!
*This post contains Amazon Affiliate links*

First up, let's talk about some fun and easy bug crafts! Crafts are great for keeping students focused and engaged between turns. If you have large articulation groups, it really is important to keep everyone actively involved while they wait for one-on-one time with you. I love using activities that require cutting, coloring, and glueing!
If you've been visiting my blog lately, then you know I'm currently obsessed with paper plate crafts! I love them, because they're sturdy and they're ready-made circles!

Materials Needed:
- Paper Plates (I like the cheap kind that are flat-ish)
- Word Pieces (you can find them in my articulation crafts or speech therapy crafts bundles)
- Bingo Daubers
- Glue
- Scissors
- Black Construction Paper
- Wiggle Eye Stickers

There are two options. 1) Students can cover the entire paper plate with word pieces. This would take the average student multiple sessions. If you don't have a place to store unfinished crafts in your speech room, then this option may not be realistic for you. If you do have space, then you plan once and you're covered for 2-3 sessions. 2) Students can cover the paper plate with a bingo dauber! Then they can glue 10 word pieces onto their plate. This option takes WAY less time!
This ladybug is so precious! Notice there are no wings, legs, or antenna - ain't nobody got time for that! haha. To create the faces of the bug, I just cut a black semi-circle out of construction paper and glued it near the top of the paper plate. Then I placed two wiggle eye stickers on it! Also, remember you can use a red bingo dauber to get the entire plate covered instead of all the word pieces! Lastly, you glue black circles on top - I used a 1 inch circle punch to make the circles.
This bee is very similar to the ladybug, but instead of dots it has black stripes and a black triangle is glued on the bottom!

There are also four no prep bug crafts in the March Speech Therapy Crafts packet (or bundle). I'll try to add in pictures of those in the next week or so!

Let's check out some bug themed resources! First, I found this adorable wooden bug box in the Target Dollar Spot! This would make such a fun reinforcer! After a student practices a word or skill, they can "feed" the bug box! I found a very similar one by Melissa and Doug on Amazon. I also found my wooden bugs at Target around Valentine's Day. Melissa and Doug make some super cute plastic ones that you can find HERE.
May: A Dab of Speech and Language features a bug themed! This can also be found in the bundle.
This packet addresses articulation, language, and stuttering/fluency! It's perfect for mixed groups. You can use it with bingo daubers! These sheets are also a fun companion for a toy bug box!
I also have a Bee Articulation packet (also found in Articulation Bundle #2)!
You can also slip these pages in a dry erase sleeve and add yellow play dough and tell your students that it's a Honey Smash game! They'll love it! Also.... you can use these sheets for word pieces if you make the bee craft! Students just cut out the honeycombs!

This year I've been hard at work on my Thematic Interactive Articulation Notebooks Growing Bundle! My latest packet is a bug theme! It's my favorite so far! Let's peek inside!
There's a bug box pocket! There are butterfly shaped puzzle pieces and then students store them inside their bug box! You can revisit this page over and over again. Students can just take out their puzzles and practice their words.
This buggy sort is my favorite! Students sort their words into initial and final positions! They lift the wing flaps and glue their words under them!
Bug Jar flap-ups! Students glue their words around the bug jar and then they lift up the bug jar and write sentences underneath it! If your students are not writing, they can also glue their bugs under the jar flap.
Buggy Phrases Flaps! Students lift up the bug bodies and write a phrase/sentence underneath!

Lastly, let's talk about some great books!

The Grouchy Ladybug by Eric Carle
This book follows a grouchy little ladybug through its day. The ladybug tries to pick fights with a variety of animals and by the end of the day it's exhausted! Ultimately, the ladybug ends up happy and content. There are so many uses for this book:

1) Time Concepts
2) Social Skills
3) Compare/Contrast - The ladybug encounters lots of different animals throughout the day. Compare the ladybug to each animal or compare the animals to each other.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
Eric Carle has tons of lovely books about bugs! This one is my favorite! This book shows the lifecycle of a butterfly. The little caterpillar hatches and eats his way through the week! Use this book to target:

1) Quantitative Concepts - He eats one apple, two pears, etc
2) Sequencing - Talk about the lifecycle of a butterfly!
3) Describing

A Pet for Fly Guy by Tedd Arnold
I LOVE the Fly Guy series! He's always been a hit in my speech room over the years! In this book, Fly Guy wants a pet of his own. They go to the pet shop and check out a puppy, frog, and cat. Then they go to the park and check out worms, spiders, and crickets. Of course, none of them work out! Ultimately, Fly Guy decides he wants Buzz (his owner) to be his pet. It's so sweet! You can work on:

1) Adjectives - Each pet doesn't work out because it's too *something.* It's either too jumpy, too slimy, too tangly, etc.
2) Why Questions - Ask students why various animals didn't work out.
3) Animal Vocabulary

Bugs! Bugs! Bugs! by Bob Barner
I love this book! It's colorful and so much fun! At the end there's a page that shows the actual sizes of bugs and there's also a colorful chart (Bug-O-Meter) at the end that breaks down where bugs live, how many legs, can it fly, etc. You can work on:

1) Rhyming - The story portion is written in rhyme!
2) Compare/Contrast - Use the bug-o-meter in the back of the book to compare/contrast different bugs!
3) Where Questions - Talk about where each type of bug lives.

Bugs A to Zzzzzz by Caroline Lawton
This is a wonderful non-fiction book to add to your bug collection. It features real pictures and shares two different bugs for each letter of the alphabet. For instance, the "B" page has a bee and a butterfly and the "Z" page has a zebra spider and a zebra swallowtail butterfly!

1) Compare/Contrast - This book is set up perfect for comparing and contrasting! Each page features two different bugs!
2) WH Questions - Each bug has a little blurb that provides information. Read the blurb aloud and then ask questions about it!
3) Describing

The Magic School Bus: Inside a Bee Hive by Joanna Cole & Bruce Degen
I love Mrs. Frizzle! This book series combines non-fiction and fiction in such a fun way! The end breaks down all of the things that can't happen in real life! The pages are full of diagrams and tons of different text features! Generally, these books are very text-heavy though. Use this book to address:

1) Text Features - Non-fiction books require a different set of skills. Teach students who to recognize a variety of text features such as headings, diagrams, charts, labels, etc.
2) Dialogue
3) Compare/Contrast - drones vs. worker bees, queen bee vs. worker bee, etc

Do you ever do a bug theme in your speech room? What materials and books do you use?

Thank you for stopping by! Have a wonderful day!

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Wednesday, March 21, 2018

If You Give a Moose a Muffin (Ideas for Speech Therapy!)

I'm head over heels for the If You Give A.... Series! Laura Numeroff is one of my absolute favorite authors. I blog about Mouse all the time, but today is all about Moose!
*This post contains Amazon Affiliate links*

It's Wild About Books Wednesday, so let's talk about If You Give a Moose a Muffin by Laura Numeroff! 

I love using series in speech therapy. Background knowledge is a huge piece of comprehension. It's so helpful when students with language disorders are already familiar with characters and plots! This book follows the same cause/effect pattern as all of the other books in this series! 

In this story, a boy gives a moose a muffin and then he wants some jam to go with it. This starts an entire series of events in which the moose makes sock puppets and paints a mural. At the end, Moose spies a blackberry bush that reminds him of jam.... and ultimately of muffins! 

There are so many goals you can target with this story! 

1. Adjectives - Moose is artistic, friendly, creative, and spontaneous! You'll definitely want to spend some time on Moose's character traits. 
2. Sequencing - This is such a fun story to sequence! There are so many silly events that build upon one another. 
3. Cause/Effect - I love using this entire series for cause/effect. Everything that happens in this story causes something else to happen! 
4. Compare/Contrast - compare this story to other books in the series (If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, If You Give a Dog a Donut, etc). 
5. Articulation Targets: initial and final /m/ - moose,  muffin, mix, jam, make, more, some, mother, him, much, etc. If you have a student that is working on /m/ then this book is perfect. They can work at the word, sentence, or reading level! You can also target initial and final /s/ (ex. moose, some, sew, sock, loose, sewing, so, scenery, see, etc). 
6. Object Functions - The boy and Moose use lots of different objects throughout the story (ex. needle and thread, paintbrush, sock puppets, sheet, soap, etc). 

Activity ideas:
- Bust out the watercolors and students can paint their own sceneries and then describe their scenes (just like Moose). 
- Cooking activity in the speech room or classroom! Make muffins!
- Bring in sock puppets. Moose creates some sock puppets in the story. Students can act out the story with the puppets.
- Sort buttons - A button is loose and Moose tries to fix it! Get different sizes, shapes, and colors and students can sort them by various attributes (big vs. small buttons, sort by colors, sort by shapes, etc).

Thank you for stopping by! Have a wonderful day!

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Monday, March 19, 2018

April Literature Flip Books

Each month, I've been rounding up all the books found in my Flipping for Literature series. Books are truly my favorite therapy tools and over the last couple of years I've been developing flip book companions for some of my favorite reads!

Let's check out the books highlighted in April's Flipping for Literature!
*This post contains Amazon Affiliate links*

One of my favorite themes for April is weather! I'm a gardener, so I love spring rain showers!

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs by Judi Barrett
This is one of my favorite weather themed books! If you're not familiar with it, a grandfather tells a story of a faraway place called Chewandswallow. There's no grocery stores there, because the weather brings in all of their food! It rains pancakes and syrup for breakfast and snows mashed potatoes! Seriously, I want to go to there (any 30 Rock fans)? haha... But one day, the weather gets out of control! There are so many ways you can use this book in therapy: compare/contrast weather in Chewandswallow vs. your hometown's weather, figurative language, problem solving, describing, and more!

Thunder Cake by Patricia Polacco
This is truly my favorite Polacco book! A young girl recounts the summe's at her grandmother's house in Michigan. One summer, her grandmother helps her overcome her fear of storms! As a storm approaches, they make something called Thunder Cake. It's such a wonderful story! It's perfect for sequencing! The steps for making a Thunder Cake are outlined in detail. You can also use this book to address: adjectives, story retelling, time concepts, and more!

Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin
I've never met a student that didn't love this book! This is a great year round read or bust it out around Cinco De Mayo! A taco party goes awry when jalapeƱos make their way into "mild salsa." It's absolutely hilarious! See, dragons LOVE tacos, but they hate spicy salsa! It kinda makes them breathe fire. haha! This is a great book to target sequencing (planning a taco party), problem solving, describing, and more! 

Zen Shorts by Jon J. Muth
Stillwater is truly one of my favorite characters in children's literature. He's a generous, kind, and thoughtful Panda. He's moves into a neighborhood and then gifts three children with stories. There's a moral to each story and each child learns a valuable lesson. The pictures are gorgeous and the book is beautifully written. This book definitely requires higher-level thinking. It's great for inferencing. 

If you're a speech-language pathologist, you can work on each flip book companion over the course of multiple sessions. Students love these keepsakes and are always so excited to show them to teachers and parents! If you do push-in therapy, these are wonderful!
If you're a classroom teacher, there are so many ways that you can implement these into your classroom. They can be used for Friday afternoon "treats." You can read the story aloud on Monday and then students can complete the flip book throughout the week in a literacy center or as morning work. They can even be used in listening centers, whole group lessons, or as partner activities!

These books can also be found in a year long bundle in my TPT store! If you collect all 52 books in this bundle, you'll save 50%!
Thank you for stopping by! I hope your April is wonderful!

P.S. In case you stop in next month to read about May's books, I wrote about them in 2016! You can find that blog post HERE. I'll be skipping to June. :)

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Thursday, March 15, 2018

Basketball Theme In Speech Therapy

March is my favorite month for so many reasons: Daylight Savings Time, spring, my birthday, St. Patrick's Day, and college basketball! The big tournament is starting and it's the perfect time to bust out some basketball themed materials!
*This post contains Amazon Affiliate links*

Let's talk about some fun crafts! I know I've said this time and time again, but I'm not a crafty person.  I've never made a wreath in my life and I don't own an ounce of puffy paint. haha. I'm pretty much Team NO PREP. Now, with that being said I'm all about simple activities that keep students engaged! 

These basketball themed no prep crafts do just that! They're simple and engaging! You just print and your students will construct their craft between turns! These are in the March Edition of my speech therapy crafts series or you can find them in the growing bundle
You can also keep students very engaged with these basketball crafts! 
You only need paper plates, black construction paper, scissors, glue, and an orange bingo dauber or word pieces (or both)! You can find the word pieces in my articulation crafts or speech therapy crafts bundles! 

First up - The Super Extra Version! haha 
This required 3 or maybe 4 pages of word pieces! I lost count. haha My Articulation Crafts make it super easy to print out pages and pages of word pieces for a single sound. You can print them on orange paper or have students color them in with an orange marker/crayon/bingo dauber. This bad boy will require multiple therapy sessions to complete, but hey... you plan once and you're covered for the week. 

If that seems too daunting for you little ones, check out The Super Easy Version! 
In this version, students just use an orange bingo dauber (and you can add 5-10 word pieces to spruce it up a little, but not required)! Challenge your students to 100 repetitions and they can dab an orange dot for every correct production! 

Then you just clue the black pieces on top! I used two straight lines and two curved lines. 

Next up - Some fun basketball themed resources! 
Basketball Articulation is new! If you've been following me for awhile then you know how much I love articulation printables! They're so versatile! Slip them in a dry erase sleeve and make a basketball smash mat - use orange play dough to go with the theme! They can be used as bingo dauber pages, you can play roll & cover games (students can cover the words with tiny erasers/bingo chips), or they can be simple coloring pages. They're great for homework, RTI, or therapy! 

I also have a basketball themed activity in my Sports Interactive Articulation Notebook (also part of a growing bundle). 
I love interactive pockets! They're great hands-on activities that can be revisited over and over again! Whenever students want to practice their words, they can take their little basketballs out of the hoop! This can also be glued onto construction paper for a craft-like activity too. 

Lastly, let's talk about some great basketball themed books! 
Picture books are my jam! They're excellent therapy tools. 

My Basketball Book by Gail Gibbons 
Gail Gibbons is one of my go-to non-fiction authors! This little book explains the game of basketball. It talks about each position and the rules! There are so many ways you can use this book in therapy:

1. Who Questions - Talk about the different positions and who does what (ex. referee, coach, guard, forward, center, etc). 
2. Vocabulary - rebounding, traveling, referee, coach, etc. I find that sports vocabulary is highly motivating, because many students love to play sports during P.E. class, recess, or after school.
3. Social Skills - Basketball is a team sport. Talk about sportsmanship and why it's so important. 

Salt in His Shoes by Deloris Jordan 
I grew up in the 90's and Michael Jordan was one of my childhood heroes! This book is written by his mother and sister. They recall a period of time when Michael became discouraged, because of his height. Despite not growing, he worked hard.... and eventually grew to be 6'6''! 

Use this book to work on:
1. Story Elements - Character, Setting, and especially problem/solution. Michael is intimidated by a tall boy at the neighborhood basketball court! 
2. Sequencing
3. Cause/Effect 

J is for Jump Shot by Mike Ulmer
This is an alphabet book that features tons of basketball themed vocabulary words! This book is like two books in one! It talks about every word with a little rhyme, but on the side of each page is in-depth information about each word. Use this book to address:

1. Vocabulary 
2. Rhyming
3. WH Questions 

Hoop Genius by John Coy
The tag-line for this book is "How a Desperate Teacher and A Rowdy Gym Class Invented Basketball." haha! This is a unique biography of James Naismith, the inventor of basketball! The illustrations in this book are incredible! 

1. Problem/Solution - Mr. Naismith tries everything with his rowdy class (lacrosse, soccer, football, etc) and nothing captured their attention. So, like any good problem solver he invented basketball. haha 
2. Categories - Things to do in gym class, sports, etc 
3. Compare/Contrast - Compare how basketball was played then vs. now or compare the different types of sports that his class tried!

Have you ever used a basketball theme? Please share your favorite resources and books in the comments! 

March has been full of Themed Thursdays! I'll be back again next week with another fun theme too! 

Thank you for stopping by! Have a wonderful day! P.S. Go Cats! 

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Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Chester's Way Literature Lap Book!

It's Wednesday! It's time to talk about another book! One of my favorite authors is Kevin Henkes. When I was attending the University of Kentucky, I was lucky enough to see him speak. He was everything I ever imagined! He's seriously amazing! Throughout the years, I've talked about Wemberly and Lilly... but today is all about Chester!
Chester's Way by Kevin Henkes is such an endearing story. Chester is very particular. He cuts his sandwiches the same way every day, he double-knots his shoes (me too!), and eats the same breakfast over and over again. I guess we can say, the safe side is where he likes to be. haha

Everything is all good..... until Lilly moves into his neighborhood! haha... It's truly a delightful story of change, friendship, and it demonstrates that life begins outside of your comfort zone.

There are so many ways you can use this story with your students!
1. Social Skills - Chester isn't very flexible at first. You can talk about flexibility, perspective taking, manners, and so much more!
2. Articulation - /ch/ and /l/ sounds!
3.  Compare/Contrast - Chester and Lilly are so different, but yet they have a few things in common! These are two great characters to discuss!
4. Character Development - Talk about how characters change throughout the story!
5. When Questions - Ask about what the characters like to do in the spring, summer, fall, and winter!

I've also crated a literature lap book companion!
These lap book projects are fun and memorable! The front features a little booklet all about the qualifies of a good friend. Teaching young students how to be a good friend is critical! There's also a flip book that can stand alone. It addresses comparing, sequencing, writing, and comprehension!

The lap book addresses vocabulary, story elements, retelling, and more:
It also addresses describing!
You can also layer the flip book inside! Glue it down in the middle section and then staple construction paper or loose-leaf paper over it for the remaining activities!
These also make fun little projects for the regular education classroom! Read the story aloud in a whole group and then throughout the week students can work on their lap books during literacy centers or as a whole group! Students can also work on these with a partner - which would be perfect since this story is about friendship!

These literature lap books are also part of a growing bundle. You can find that HERE.

Have you ever read Chester's Way in your speech room or classroom? What skills did you address?

Thank you for stopping by! Have a wonderful day!

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Saturday, March 10, 2018

Toys as Tools: Vet Clinic

Hello Friends! It's time for another edition of Toys as Tools! Every month, I'll be blogging about one of my favorite toys to use for speech-language therapy. Toys are truly tools. They're the perfect way to address communication goals with children.
*This post contains Amazon Affiliate links*

Today, it's all about the Vet Clinic! It's very similar to the Critter Clinic and it's almost as if it was designed specially for enhancing language! There are truly so many goals that you can tackle with this toy. 

This toy comes with a variety of veterinary accessories - stethoscope, scale, thermometer, and shot. There is also a built in x-ray machine and it comes with two little animals (a bulldog and cat). It has four doors and a set of color coded keys! This is similar to the Critter Clinic, because you have to match up the key color with the door color! I love that little detail! 
There are so many language skills you can address with this toy! 

1. Requesting: Students can work on asking for things that they want - such as a key to open the door, an animal, or an accessory. 

2. Alternative and Augmentation Communication: Interactive toys are my go-to tools when I'm working with a child that uses a communication device. This is a very motivating toy. Students can request items that are behind the door, ask for the keys, and even work on making comments! 

3. Verbs: There are so many verbs that you can work on with this toy! For instance, it comes with a little scale and you can work on the verb "weigh." You can also work on sleep, turn (turn the key), walk, run, bark, meow, x-ray (as a verb or noun). 

4. Articulation: Hide lots of little items (or articulation cards) that feature the student's sound behind the doors. When the student opens the door they have to practice all the words that they find! You can use little people toys, Shopkins, or other little trinkets that you have. You can also use carrier phrases. For instance, if you have a student that is working on /s/ blends they can say "The cat is on the scale, the dog is on the scale, the turtle is on the scale, etc." If you have a student working on /r/, then they can "x-ray" lots of different animals!

5. Prepositions: There are so many spatial concepts that you can work on with this toy! For instance, you can address inside, outside, next to, between, over, under, in, out, top, bottom, etc

6. WH Questions: This is the perfect toy for "where" questions, because you ask where each of the animals are (ex. where is the cat? She is on the x-ray machine or behind the pink door.). You can also work on "why" questions (ex. why is the dog at the vet? He needs a check-up or he is sick.). This is also great for "what" questions (examples: What do you use to weigh an animal? What do you use to listen to their heartbeats? What do you use to check their temperatures? etc).

7. Directions: Just like the Critter Clinic, this is a wonderful toy to use if you have students that are working on following directions. For instance, you can say "put the cat on the x-ray machine" or "after you check the dog's temperature, put him behind the orange door."

8. Plurals - Key vs. Keys, Door vs. Doors. You can also put a variety of little things behind the doors (ex. one dog behind the orange door, two crayons behind another door, three erasers behind another door, etc). When the student unlocks the door, they have to make a sentence with either a singular or plural noun.

*I love collecting little trinkets just for activities like this. For instance, sometimes the Target Dollar Spot will have erasers shaped like food or animals. I'll always grab two packets so there can be multiples of each item (you never know when you want to work on plurals! haha).

9. Fluency/Stuttering: You can even use this toy with students that stutter! You can write stuttering myths and facts on an index cards and then put them behind the door (you'll have to fold the index card). Then the student can "unlock myths." They'll open a door and then read the statements on each card and determine if it's a myth or fact. You can also put the different types of stuttering on the index cards or strategies. Then the student has to demonstrate that type of stuttering or practice the given strategy on the card.

10. Antonyms: Heavy/Light (Ex. weigh the dog and say that he's heavy... then weigh the cat and say, but the cat is light), Healthy/Sick, Big/Little, etc. You can also use vocabulary flash cards and put them behind the doors or write a word on a slip of paper. When the student unlocks the door, they have to give an antonym for the word on the slip. You can also use this activity to address multiple meaning words and synonyms too!
Truly, you can work on an endless amount of skills! You can also work on comparing/contrasting all the different animals at the Vet Clinic or the different Vet tools. You can work on categories, adjectives, expanding utterances, communication temptations (put desired items behind the door so that they child has to ask for the key), and the list goes on and on! What else would you use this toy to address? Leave a comment to share more ideas!
If you want to read about a similar toy, check out my Critter Clinic blog post HERE.

Thank you for stopping by! Have a wonderful day!

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