Speech Therapy Toolkit 2. Object cards 

As useful as my iPad is, there are times I need to use paper based resources.  Sometimes the screen is too small for clients to see it properly. Sometimes they find it distracting or confusing. Sometimes you need to pare everything back in order to work effectively with someone with a very severe aphasia.  

I always try to carry some object cards with me.  The obvious choice are cards from the ColourCard range (http://www.speechmark.net/everyday-objects).  However as phones and tablets have camera capabilities, I will often make personalised object cards to use with clients.  With their permission, I’ll snap around 15 things in their room.  I then either print out on my printer, or I upload to a photo printing site (like snapfish, photobox etc) and order a set of prints for a few pounds. I then stick onto black card (this makes them look smart and makes the photo stand out), and if required, add the written word label.  

I use object cards usually when someone has severe comprehension difficulties.  The cards can be used for object to picture matching or for spoken word to picture matching.  I will use them repetitively (drilling) and quite quickly I can guage a client’s ability to demonstrate new learning.  I’ve found that most clients who demonstrate extremely poor auditory comprehension will respond to drilling with a small set of object cards as the starting point to rehab. The cards are also useful for naming work, semantic sorting, working on gestures – all sorts of uses!  

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