These memorable Australian Phonetic Alphabet Critters are making learning something special for kids with speech and literacy challenges.
Zippy Bumble Bee (z), Sidney Snake (s), Portia Candle (p), Bobby Ball (b) and fellow Phonic All Stars started as a novel set of puppets to make speech therapy exciting as the centre of any Speech Pathologists or Teachers kit given that they represent the speech sound grid for the individual 46 phonemes (speech sounds).
The puppets themselves have been handmade by Katrine Elliot, Speech Pathologist, to demonstrate each speech sound using the tongue, lips, jaw, voice and even breath. For example, Zippy Bumble is able to place his tongue behind his teeth and he vibrates a buzzer in his throat to represent the voice box to teach the sound “zzzzz” for the letter “Z” which is made in this manner. Vonnie Vacuum Cleaner places her top teeth on her bottom lip to demonstrate the “vvvvvv” sound for the letter “V”. All the consonant characters (m, n, ng, p, b, t, d, c-k, g, f, v, s, z, sh/zh, th, h, ch, j, w, r, l, y, x, and qu) have a fully studio produced soundtrack that also features how each speech sound is made including being laced with feature words beginning with that target sound eg. S- secret salesman, sit, sell you anything. The Program comes with a family teaching program with the Teach-me-speech-sounds Book which is now available as an eBook.
Tell me about the Phonic All Star Speech and Literacy Program?
The Phonic All Star speech and literacy Program is an innovative teaching program developed by Katrine Elliott, Speech Pathologist, in her 20 years of private practice on the Gold Coast.
The Program interfaces the arts, with entertainment from puppets, music and bright resources with the clinical sciences, being based on solid principles of development and therapy in articulation, phonology, phonological awareness, auditory processing and literacy. Over the 13 dedicated years of its development, it was to Katrine’s surprise, that The Phonic All Star Program sculpted itself into a comprehensive teaching program for speech and literacy that has attracted the interest of speech pathologists, schools, teachers, and even investors over the years throughout its development due to the notable impact that was seen on literacy education and communication skills in the children it supported.
How does the Phonic All Star Program work?
The Phonic All Star Program has been developed by a speech pathologist specifically for speech therapy as it is the central program that supports the “How to fix series…” which are a series of speech therapy and literacy intervention programs that support the “in the clinic’ and “online” speech therapy method of intervention. The program provides a step by step series of activities that assist in the correction of specific conditions that a speech pathologist would be helping you with in your clinical sessions.
Phase 1 of the Phonic All Star Program involves developing the scaffolded structure of acquisition of specific skills for correct speech production and later, literacy development. Specific equipment has been developed for each skill including but not exclusive to the brief list below. Resources are available to purchase separately, however are best used with your child or student under the instructional Phonic All Star program given the thought and design behind the program for a specific purpose of speech and literacy therapy. The Program can be tailored to also be used by teachers and kindergarten teaches in their educational setting. Equipment has been developed specifically for this purpose.
Phase 2 of the Phonic All Star Program involves providing an internet platform for our Australian Phonetic Alphabet Critters which will be launched in conjunction with the Speech Pathology On Line consultancy program (www.speechtherapyonline.com.au) and e-CLASS comprehensive teaching programs (www.Teach-Me-Speech-Sounds.com) and the “how to fix series…”.
www.howtofixspeech.com (STILL UNDER CONSTRUCTION)
www.howtofixlistening.com (STILL UNDER CONSTRUCTION)
www.howtofixreading.com (STILL UNDER CONSTRUCTION)
www.howtofixspelling.com (STILL UNDER CONSTRUCTION)
www.howtofixwriting.com (STILL UNDER CONSTRUCTION)
These How to Fix…programs will be made available soon and aim to reach kids that need the support the most no matter where they are located. The internet based training site will facilitate families, teachers and speech pathologists to access training, resources and support by the integration of a resource library, video footage of therapy in action and consultative support where needed.
What is the point of difference between the Phonic All Star Program and other literacy and phonics programs?
What inspired the development of the Phonic All Star Program?
The original design of the Phonic All Star Program was to serve a purpose to bridge a desperate financial and human resources gap from restrictions in Speech Pathology services that are understood nationwide. These are:
- funding restrictions from the government
- long waiting lists to access government support for speech therapy at the Community Health and Education Department levels
- limited Speech Pathology clinician availability whether in private practice or the public sector
- challenges with accessibility to speech therapy due to distance for people living rural and remotely
Even after 20 years of clinical practice for Katrine Elliott, the developer of the program, the frustrations lie in that children still continue to suffer from these limitations to accessing the help they need despite therapy being well understood to make significant changes to children’s capabilities and lives if not completely correcting the condition being treated.
There is a cure for many speech and literacy impairments… Speech therapy.
We just need to have access to the children to help. These barriers needed to be addressed.
In the days that TV ruled, The Phonic All Star puppets were hand created by Katrine to be the faces on TV for kids to fall in love with while they learned vital information assisting speech and literacy development. The internet platform came to town over the years of development offering a more flexible stage for the program to be contained and provided the possibility of reaching a greater audience within flexible time frames at low production costs. Watch our “clubhouse” of information as we roll this out over time to bring this directly to the families by the online teaching series in collaboration with Online consultation and support from a Speech Pathologist.
Take the time to have a look at the Zip It Up for kids sponsorship fundraising program which is Optimal Communications solution to an ongoing zipped up purse from the government to support children with speech and literacy impairment. Either take the “Zip IT Up challenge” of silence for the day to feel what it is like to have a communication impairment and the impact it has on a person’s life, or take the “Have A Chat” experience if your job and life can’t create that inconvenience in your day. However, don’t forget to appreciate that you are doing a job that you wouldn’t have a choice to do if you were speech and literacy impaired…thus making the point that speech, communication and literacy capabilities are not a luxury item in our lives.
Supplementary teaching aids such as sound teaching posters, speech sound production manual, jumping sound floor frieze, and music CD soundtracks make the learning fun and inclusive at a group level.