Speech Therapy Oops! {SmartmouthSLP}

This week, Heidi from SmartmouthSLP shares her #speechtherapyoops with you- and it's AWESOME. Take it away, Heidi....

My OOPS moment…
Heidi Britz (SmartmouthSLP)

Hello!  I’m Heidi Britz from SmartmouthSLP and I am very excited/embarrassed to share my “oops” moment with the world on The Pedi Speechie’s fabulous blog!  I am into my 20-something year as a SLP, but I still have those oops moments.  I laugh at myself and learn from them, that’s the best I can do!

My OOPS moment came several years ago in my school.  I was excited and nervous to be observed by our Teacher of the Year committee.  I planned my group activity for a bunch of second grade students with speech and language disorders.  I carefully aligned the lesson plan to the classroom curriculum and my focus was to target decoding, blending and defining the vocabulary words in context from the language arts story they were reading.

I thought I was being smart by sorting all the letters out prior to the lesson to make sure that no inadvertent naughty words could be sounded out.  I have two boys of my own, so you never know!!  Confident that this potential crisis was averted, I set up the chairs for the observation the night before and left my room with a smile on my face.

The next day the committee of 5 administrators filed in quietly to my small room and took a seat to watch my group.  I had prepped my kids prior to the observation and promised really good candy if they did their best and behaved the way I knew they could. I was not above bribery at this point.  Our Assistant Principal at the time was also a SLP, so I knew at least he would really understand all the moving pieces of my lesson: vocabulary, speech sound production, answering wh questions, decoding and blending, making predictions, context clues, even if no one else on the committee did.

The lesson started smoothly and although I knew my face was flushed from my nervousness, the kids were doing great until my “well planned” blending piece fell apart. One of the boys took his turn and sounded out the letters in front of him.  I had even posted picture cues on the board behind me to give them a vocabulary bank to use.  His sweet voice then blended the sounds into a word that was not a choice (or even possible to make with the letters in front of him)….”  S..T..I…R…..T*TS!”

I didn’t respond, so he said it again.  Time stopped and I saw my AP turn his head, trying not to laugh out loud.  I was mortified!!  I composed my shocked face and my three ring circus moved along with a strong, “Stir, the word is stir, as in stir the soup. Good try!  Okay, who’s next?”  I swallowed hard and tried not to cry.

Needless to say, I didn’t win Teacher of the Year that year (but I did the following year). Other than my AP who poked a bit of fun at me over the STIR incident, no one else seemed to catch what happened! It is still one of my favorite and most cringe worthy memories!  Sometimes you can’t be prepared for what life throws at you no matter how carefully you plan, and that’s a lesson that we all learn as SLPs!

Do you need more oops in your life? Check more out here


  1. Haha..that's too funny! It sounds like we share some of the same students! :) Congratulations on making T.O.Y.!!!

  2. So funny! Sounds like you handled it great!
    All Y’all Need

  3. So funny! Sounds like you handled it great!
    All Y’all Need


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