If you did One Aphasia Action this spring (and it’s not too late to do the activities now!), you know that we love bite-sized, actionable ideas you can do from home. We wanted to keep the progress going through Aphasia Awareness Month.
Each week, we’re giving you five tips that we crowdsourced from people with aphasia, their caregivers, and professionals who work with people who have aphasia. They’re activities you can do without leaving home that will help you practice your speech or make life a little easier if you have aphasia.
Try out the activities below this week and make sure you fill out the form and leave your own tip. (Pssst: You don’t need to write a lot. We’ll flesh out short tips with examples, as you’ll see below.)
MONDAY: Super Namer
Grab a water bottle (you’ll need it because you’re about to do a lot of talking), lace up your sneakers, and walk outside. Either go to a park or set a timer for twenty minutes and start walking. Name everything you see—from trees and birds to stop signs and houses. Name the colors you see or count the number of cars you pass. Don’t worry if you can’t remember something’s name. You can either pause and circumlocute around the word until you get it, or skip that word and move on to the ones you can name. There are so many things to see outside. –This activity submitted by Mert.
TUESDAY: Write a Script
Become a playwright for your own life. Write scripts to help you speak through common situations. Scripts may be aimed at certain places—such as questions that often come up when you’re grocery shopping—or certain situations. Start by writing and practicing a script that explains aphasia because it will be useful in so many situations. –This activity submitted by Mona Greenfield from Metropolitan Communication Associates
WEDNESDAY: Poetry Reading
Poetry is musical in nature, so it is sometimes easier to read a short poem than it is to read a short article. A great poet for often funny and sometimes brief works is Shel Silverstein. He uses rhymes and repetition to create a rhythm in his poems. His poetry is also suitable for kids, so his work is the perfect poetry to practice in front of grandchildren. Set up a Zoom call with a friend or family member and read them a poem today. –This activity submitted by Mona Greenfield from Metropolitan Communication Associates
THURSDAY: Read a Recipe
Recipes are fun to read because they contain a lot of verbs: All of that chopping, stirring, sauteeing, and mixing needs to be explained for the dish to come out like the one in the cookbook picture. Reading a recipe means you not only get to practice saying a lot of words, but we’re going to suggest you go a step further and pantomime the action. Pretend you’re cutting up carrots when that direction pops up in the recipe. Act out stirring the batter after you read it aloud. Apologies if you get very hungry from this speech activity! –This activity submitted by Mona Greenfield from Metropolitan Communication Associates
FRIDAY: Aphasia Is Different
This statement will not come as a surprise: Aphasia is different. You know this, but sometimes you need a reminder that it’s okay to feel frustrated, confused, or nostalgic for a time before aphasia. Things are harder right now, but you’re doing this work so things will be easier in the future. Give yourself five minutes today to feel what you’re going to feel when it comes to aphasia. Acknowledge that it’s different and do something that makes you happy to honor the hard work you did this week taking action. –This activity submitted by Mona Greenfield from Metropolitan Communication Associates
Got a great tip? Share it with others by filling out the form. We’ll turn it into an activity in one of the upcoming weeks and give you credit if we use it in a post. (Pssst: Again, you don’t need to write a lot. We’ll flesh out short tips with examples. The ideas above were only a short phrase when they came in on the form.)