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Book Review: There Was A Speech Teacher Who Swallowed Some Dice

Book Review by Stepanie Long, MCD, CCC-SLP
Pat Mervine has written another great book for SLPs that can be used for therapy, loaned to parents as a fun resource for parents to read to their children, or as an icebreaker activity for an SLP to read with a new student starting speech therapy.  The book is a whimsical take on “There Was An Old Lady” series, and features an SLP  who first swallows dice, and then swallows various other materials commonly found in speech rooms such as sound card decks, tongue depressors, games, and more.  The colorful pictures help complement the fun, light tone of the book.  But, oh, there is so much more wonderful things in this book that should be mentioned!
First, this book would be great for doing a sequencing activity-  what did the SLP swallow first, second, and so on?  Second, there are a plethora of language goals that can be met with this book-   metaphors (“dark as midnight”), multiple meaning words (“Inside her insides”), and acquisition of new vocabulary words (uneasy, queasy, data, glistening, misery, doom).   The biggest benefit of this book is that it highlights how speech therapy can be fun, and through this fun atmosphere using the materials listed in the story, students can improve their communication (even the dedication is fun-  make sure to check it out.  Every SLP can relate to the quote from Johnny that is in the dedication).  I loved the ending and the final advice to not swallow the dice!
The book also has a few additional features including an index of some of the materials and items in an SLPs office/therapy room and a speech room scavenger hunt which is a great follow-up activity to the book.   This book is another wonderful addition to every SLPs toolbox!  Check it out at Amazon or in Pat’s on-line store today!
About the Reviewer:  Stephanie Long, MCD, CCC-SLP is a school-based speech-language pathologist and creator of the blog Cheerful Speech Chatter.  She received her B.A. and a M.A. in Counseling from UNC-Charlotte, and was awarded a MCD in Communication Disorders from the University of South Carolina at Columbia. 

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