Ravishing, Radiant "R" - Articulation Games for the R Sound
Many children have difficulty pronouncing the /r/ phoneme.
These articulation games for the /r/ sound will be a quick resource for you to use the next time you need ideas for eliciting it.
Remember, the more productions you can get during a therapy session the better. Drill is very beneficial for maximizing therapy time, but it still has to be fun!
Take the Confusion out of Teaching Multiple Meaning Words
SEE ALSO: 8 Activities for Using Multi-syllabic Words
Sometimes, especially in young children, even just eliciting the /r/ sound can be difficult.
Here is a new idea to try…ROAR!
Show the children these pictures of a bear, tiger, and lion.
Explain that these animals have a very good ROAR!
Tell them that they are going to be an animal during therapy and let each child choose their animal.
Use a mirror.
Have each child practice making scary “animal roaring” faces. Then talk about tongue placement.
Use words consistent with the animal theme, such as “curl back your tongue like a lion.”
Practice growling with the /r/ sound before it turns into the longer roar. This method proved to be successful with my own son who had a difficult time with /r/.
Rabbit Rabbit Race to the Rug!
This is a game you can play to elicit a lot of initial /r/ sounds in a short therapy session. It can be adapted to be used in isolated words, phrases or sentences.
You do need a little space for this game, so if you have a small office move to the hallway.
Lay a rug about ten feet in front of the child/ren. (If you don't have a small rug in your office, try the local dollar store!)
Tell them that they are a rabbit and they need to get to the rug!
The way they earn hops is by saying the /r/ sound.
So for the word level, they could take a hop after saying 10 productions. For phrases, they could say “rabbit rabbit race to the rug!”
For each set of productions they get to take one big rabbit hop.
Randy the Rhino
Print a picture of this rhinoceros and cut a slit in the body.
Print the list of initial /r/ words.
Cut out the words and flip them over on the table.
Tell the child that Randy the Rhino is really hungry!
Flip over each word and say it 5 times or make a sentence using the word before “feeding” it to the rhino.
You could also use the carrier phrase “Randy the Rhino is eating ____” (insert /r/ word.)
Pirates and Fairies
Print a picture of a pirate and a fairy, or just write the words on two separate pieces of paper.
Then print the following words and cut them out.
Ask the child to sort through the words and either give the object to the fairy or the pirate.
Practice saying each word many times or use it in a sentence. “I am giving the camera to the fairy.”
Articulation Therapy + Pirate Adventures = Awesomeness!
Cars Cars Cars!
Bring a variety of small toy cars to the therapy lesson.
These should vary in color, size, and shape so the children can use them in different sentences. (These can be purchased at the dollar store if you don’t already have them.)
At the word level, practice the word “car”.
The therapist can say a descriptive phrase...
- “I have a red...”
- “You have a small...”
...and the child finishes with the word car.
Use three cars to practice saying all the sounds “c-a-r” and the final /r/ car can zoom away as the child holds the sound.
If using phrases and sentences, allow the child to make their own sentences while playing with and comparing/contrasting the cars.
Pick up each car and say the color in a sentence…
- ”This is a blue car.
- This is a red car.”
Feather Feather What Do You See?
Use this story to practice final /r/ sounds…
Feather feather what do you see?
I see a flower looking at me.
Flower flower what do you see?
I see a dinosaur looking at me.
Dinosaur dinosaur what do you see?
I see an alligator looking at me.
Alligator alligator what do you see?
I see a mother looking at me.
Mother mother what do you see?
I see my daughter looking at me!
Write the following blends on index cards or post-it notes.
dr cr fr br pr gr tr
Have the child flip over a blend and ask them to say as many words using that blend as they can think of, even if they are nonsense words.
Then use the list of /r/ blends on our website to add to their inventory of words.
If they can say ten words in each blend, give them a reinforcement.
Remember, the word “prize” is a blend. :)
NEW! The Last Set of Flashcards You'll Ever Need!
Silly Story With Blends
Have the child read this silly story aloud, or you can read it to them and have them “catch” you if you don’t pronounce a blend properly.
You can also have them listen for the blends and clap when they hear/see one. There are over 30 blended /r/ words in this paragraph.
"Once upon a time there lived a prince.
Late one Friday night, he was eating fruit. (He loved grapes and prunes!) There was a knock at the door, and it was a frozen princess!
She asked the prince if he would be her friend. The prince said he would, under one condition. He asked the princess if she likes grapes and prunes.
She started to cry. “No,” she said, “but I do like bread and pretzels!”
The prince began to shut the door, but the frozen princess handed him a drink. He started to drink it, and he turned green, the color of grass!
Suddenly, he became a frog.
The moral of the story? When the frozen princess comes to greet you, don’t offer her prunes and grapes.
Grant the princess some bread and pretzels!"
That’s a RAP!
For comprehensive lists of every phoneme in every position check out all of HomeSpeechHome's Word Lists.
Even better, download the...
They provide extensive word lists at your finger tips in every position for every phoneme.
Word Vault Pro allows you to track data during quick drill with your students. And that is only a small section of the app. Don’t even get me started on the language portion. It's truly remarkable.
Have a RADIANT day!
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About the Author
Lindsey is an M.S. CCC-SLP from Salt Lake City, UT. She received both her B.S. and M.S. from Utah State University. When she's not chasing her 4 crazy kids (soon to be 5) around, she enjoys creating therapy ideas and materials. Read More
Treating the /r/ phoneme can be tricky, tiresome and just plain annoying for both the clinician and student! I haven’t met an SLP in the elementary, middle school or high school level that doesn’t need more speech therapy materials for r.
The best advice I got from a veteran SLP when I asked how to teach a child to say /r/ was “just grab a pair of gloves, a tongue depressor and hope for the best!”
Dwight Schrute sums up most SLP’s feelings about the /r/ phoneme in his office video clip! He says “R is one of the most menacing of sounds! That’s why they call it murder and not muck duck!” My thoughts exactly Dwight. Here is a post by SLP Natalie Snyders about getting a good /r/. There is also some really good ideas from Playing With Words 365 about teaching the /r/ phoneme.
Articulation Activities To Treat The /R/ Phoneme
Here are some TPT products that I have made or bought from TPT that have helped keep my kids motivated and get good results with mastering the /r/!!1. My interactive initial r and r-blend flipbooks are perfect for your older students that can read and write well! My prevocalic and vocalic r flip books have been great as well!
2. Figuratively speeching has a great articulation placemat set that is great for sending home for additional practice. It provides activities for the whole week on one sheet with letters included to send home!
3. Primary Punch has some wonderful home practice worksheets that are print n’ go!
4. Erik Raj has these super fun Mini homework sheets for articulation. They have great silly questions with the /r/ phoneme that students can discuss at home. Great resource for working on carry over! Plus, it doesn’t waste lots of paper. I will have my students try to discuss the question with a friend, the teacher and a parent.
Speech Therapy Materials For /R/
5. My print n’ go flashcards have been very useful in my speech room. You can either print up, hole punch and hold on a key ring or staple together. I started putting my flashcards in plastic cover protectors and having students cross off the words as they say their /r/ sound. Makes for easy therapy prep and LOTS of practice. I store in a three hole punch folder, so I can send home with the student if I want them to practice over the weekend.
6. Sublime Speech has these handy Articulation Strips for /r/ that are great to work on /r/ at the word and single sentence level. They are easy to store and have visual cues on the strips to help with reminding students to think about their /r/.
7. Miss V’s Speech World has a great 52 Weekly /r/ homework worksheets product that makes planning home practice activities a breeze!! They last for the entire week and have creative fun activities for the students to complete.
8. Dollar Challenge Articulation Activity from Speech Room News is a great activity to get students to get 100 trials per session. She includes /r/ initial, r-blends and vocalic r sheets as well as homework sheets!!
9. Articulation Secret Codes from Kiwi Speech are fun worksheets that keep the students engaged while you are drilling with each student in the group. These are great for home practice activities too!
10. Busy Bee Speech has a great product to help with working on generalizing speech sounds into spontaneous speech. Her Articulation Carry-Over Activities are perfect for therapy sessions or sending home to work on structured conversation.
What resources do you use and love for treating the /r/ phoneme? I would love to add some more resources to my therapy materials stash. Did I mention that I have 10 kids working on /r/ this year?
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Filed Under: articulation, Therapy Materials