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  • Writer's pictureStacy Crouse

Using Speech Therapy Worksheets Digitally in Adobe Reader

Passing out speech therapy worksheets to students doesn't exactly generate tons of excitement. But you can get a completely different reaction just by using the exact same PDF digitally–using Adobe Reader.

Chances are that you view PDFs on your computer all the time. But before you hit 'Print', think about doing the activity on a device. You may not realize that Adobe Reader (a free software program that you're likely already using) has so many features for using PDF resources digitally in your speech therapy session.

What is Adobe Reader?

Adobe Acrobat Reader is a free software program that opens, views, and prints PDFs on both PCs and Macs. For SLPs, Adobe Reader can be used to digitally interact with PDF activities in many ways during speech therapy sessions.

How can SLPs use Adobe Reader in Speech Therapy?

Whether an SLP is working in-person with students or virtually in teletherapy, Adobe Reader can be used to show and interact with PDF activities.

Display speech therapy worksheets.

Of course, PDF activities can be presented on a screen (computer, iPad, or smartboard) using Adobe Reader to view and/or read. In teletherapy, the SLP can screenshare the Adobe Reader window to show a PDF to their students.

Digitally interact with the PDF.

One type of PDF (called an interactive PDF) has built-in components that a student can digitally engage with. Some examples include...

  • "Buttons" that the student can push to select an answer or navigate the PDF.

  • Text boxes that can be typed in (like in this camping-themed resource)

  • Checkboxes that can be checked with a click of the mouse.

A speech therapy student using Adobe Reader to engage with an interactive PDF activity

"Mark up" or draw on the pages.

Just as SLPs and students might write on a printed worksheet, digital annotation in Adobe Reader can be used to write or draw on PDFs. Annotation tools in Adobe Reader are shown on a floating vertical menu on the left side of the PDF. If you don't see them, click the "Comments" icon near the top of the right pane.

Annotation and drawing tools available in Adobe Reader for speech therapy PDF activities

Note that Adobe Reader's annotation tools are only enabled when a PDF is saved and secured in a way that allows these annotations. For those with the capability, there are several useful annotation tools that you might use in a speech therapy (or teletherapy) session.

Draw Freehand Lines

As you see on the coloring page above (free for email subscribers), clicking the scribble icon gives you several options including the ability to draw freely on the PDF. In this example, students could color the pictures or check off each target word.

Create Lines and Shapes

Similarly, there are options to draw straight lines or various shapes. In speech therapy, you might use this function to create markers or pawns to be moved around the page of a compare and contrast game.

Creating game pieces in Adobe Reader for a speech therapy game

Modify Text

Also in the vertical toolbar, you'll find tools for highlighting or underlining text. These options would be great for locating vocabulary words or finding answers in a non-fiction reading passage.

A speech therapy reading comprehension passage in a PDF viewer with vocabulary words highlighted.

Adobe Reader gives SLPs and their students lots of ways to interact with speech therapy worksheets and activities. Eliminate prep time, save paper, and engage your students using this free downloadable tool!

📌 Got a speech therapy board on Pinterest? SAVE the love ❤️

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