Boom or BUST! Getting Started with Boom™ Cards
Please welcome my guest blogger, Amber from Striding in Speech!
Let’s be honest, not many of us love change and embrace it with open arms. As SLPs, the last thing we want (or have time) to do is add another website to our list of “things I have to learn”. When I made the switch to teletherapy in 2018, I was trying to learn all of the new things that went along with my job. Jumping into Boom™ Cards was something I avoided for a while.
What I didn’t realize, at the time, was how easy and accessible the Boom™ Learning website is and how Boom Cards would completely transform my teletherapy sessions! I can’t believe I waited so long into my teletherapy career to start using them. These bright, colorful, and interactive cards increased my student’s engagement and took all of the prep and mental work out of planning sessions. Plus, Boom Cards can also be used in face-to-face settings with the Boom Learning app. The students that I see in person love Boom Cards as much as my teletherapy students do!
I’m going to help you navigate the world of Boom Learning with everything you need to know in order to start using these wonderful, interactive task cards during your therapy sessions. Once you start you won’t go back!
Boom Learning Memberships
Boom Learning gives new users a free trial of the Essential membership. Within this trial, you are able to experience many features such as setting up "classrooms", assigning decks, and receiving and sharing detailed reports. And of course, you can add free and paid decks to your library and use those decks with students during therapy sessions. This is all you need to get your feet wet with Boom Cards!
When your free trial ends, you have the option to continue with an “Essentials” membership for $25 per year, upgrade to a membership with more features, or downgrade to the free membership. With the free membership, you're still able to access and use all the decks in therapy.
Classrooms are a way to group your students. Students are individual accounts you’ve created for each student. Organizing students into groups is most beneficial if you plan to assign decks to sets of students. Obviously, this feature is great for teachers with separate classrooms, but it's a little different for us SLPs. You can group your students according to goal area, age, or group/schedule if you'd like to!
After you’ve signed up for your Boom Learning membership, it’s time to find some decks to use! You can download free decks or purchase decks directly on the Boom Learning website or from TpT.
How to Purchase Boom Cards from the BOOM LEARNING Website
Purchasing Boom Cards directly from the Boom Learning website is incredibly easy. First, search for decks in the “Store” tab. From there, you can use the search bar to type specific keywords (goals, themes, etc.) You can refine your search by grade level or subject, sort the results by certain criteria, or show results from sellers you're already following..
You can preview any deck by clicking on the deck and selecting “full-sized preview”. This allows you to get a better feel for what is offered within a deck before purchasing.
Once you find a deck you want to purchase, add it to your shopping cart. When you are ready to check out, head to your shopping cart to review your items. From there, you'll follow the prompts through all the checkout steps.
Decks on Boom Learning can be purchased at checkout with US dollars or points. Point packages can be bought from Boom Learning (using PayPal or a credit card) and redeemed whenever you'd like. You can also add decks to your wishlist and buy them later.
After the purchase, the deck is automatically and immediately added to your library, which you can find by selecting the “Library” tab.
How to Purchase Boom Cards from the TPT Website
You can search “Boom Cards” or “Boom Learning” to find an extensive list of decks on TpT! You can also search within a specific seller’s store to find a list of Boom Cards they have created.
Within the description and/or preview of most resources, you will find the link to a full-sized preview of that deck within Boom Learning so you can try out four cards of the deck before purchasing!
To purchase Boom Cards on TpT, add the product (free or paid) to your cart and checkout as you normally would on the site. Boom Cards purchased from TpT (or any third-party website) can be redeemed right away upon completing the purchase, but it takes a few steps on your part.
Once the transaction is completed, you will download a PDF that includes directions for adding the purchased deck to your Boom Learning library. Look for a statement similar to the following: “Click here to redeem your purchased deck.” When you click on the link or picture, you will automatically be taken to the Boom Learning website where you will confirm your account (you must be logged in to your account). Once you do this, the deck will automatically be added to your library.
How to Use Boom Cards in Speech Therapy
Now that you’ve purchased your Boom Cards, it’s time for the fun! All of the decks you’ve purchased will be listed in the 'Library' tab. Click on the deck you want to use with your students. From there, you can screen share via your teletherapy platform or use a phone or tablet (with the Boom Learning app) in face-to-face therapy.
To send a deck to a student to do for homework, go to your Boom Learning library. On each deck, you will see a dropdown menu labeled “action”. When you click on that button, a list of tasks will appear.
The easiest way to share a deck with a student is by sending a “fast pin link” to your student. This will give the student access to the deck for 14 days (5 days for Starter memberships). With this method, students do not have to create a Boom Learning account in order to access the deck.
You can also send a “hyperplay link” as homework. With this option, students sign in to Boom Learning to access the deck. This post provides more guidance on assigning decks to students!
There you go- you’re all set to dive into the world of Boom Learning. I hope you find these digital task cards as functional and motivating as my students and I do!
Amber Kuckelman, MS, CCC-SLP is an ASHA-certified SLP living in Texas. Amber owns Striding in Speech Therapy Clinic where she provides assessments and therapy to children and adolescents in the Graham, Texas area. Amber is certified in The Hanen Program-It Takes Two to Talk™ and has a passion for building relationships with her clients and their families in order to work towards speech and language goals. She’s also a lover of no-prep and no-print resources! Follow her Instagram account (@stridinginspeech) and TPT store for ideas related to easy, no-prep, digital resources for both face-to-face and teletherapy!
Want to learn more? Get tons of additional information on using Boom Cards!
Boom Learning and Boom Cards are the trademarks of Boom Learning Inc. Used with permission.