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  • Writer's pictureStacy Crouse

10+ Teletherapy Activities That Don't Require Remote Mouse Control

Finding teletherapy activities that engage your students without the use of remote mouse control can be a challenge. Whether it's the teletherapy platform (or device) that lacks the capability of remote mouse control or you just find it works best for your students if you control the mouse, there are lots of activities to get and keep students engaged in your virtual speech therapy sessions.

Teletherapy Activities That Do Not Require Remote Mouse Control

Use these teletherapy activities when you aren't able (or choose not to) give your students remote mouse control:

Picture Search Activities

A colorful picture can capture students' attention, especially when it motivates them to search the picture for something. The Highlights Kids website has dozens of pictures, each with different theme and list of objects to find.

In this articulation activity, students race to find all of each object in the sound-loaded picture search. This is a great group activity for students who thrive on a little competition!

A student looking at an articulation picture search during a teletherapy session.

A Boom™ Card deck lets you put a unique and fun spin on a picture search... using a virtual flashlight! As the SLP controlling the mouse, you can move the flashlight overlay around the darkened picture scenes as students look for the vocabulary items listed on each card.

A teletherapy activity on a laptop where students move a flashlight around a picture scene to find objects.

Picture Scene Activities

In addition to picture searches, an interesting picture scene can go a long way in facilitating speech and language in teletherapy. These one-page scenes even have articulation and language prompts right on the page.

A language scene displayed on a laptop during a teletherapy scene

A real photograph can also provide visual interest and opportunities to address numerous social goals in teletherapy. These social situations come in both Boom Card and PDF formats.

Teletherapy activities targeting social language goals in which students answer questions about a photograph

Another great place to find intriguing photos for teletherapy is The New York Times' segment called "What's Going On in This Picture?" A new photo (without a title or caption) is added everyday, and students are even invited to comment with their thoughts and opinions on what's happening in the photo.

Teletherapy Games

Oftentimes, SLPs can adapt digital versions of classic board games in teletherapy by rolling onscreen dice and moving game pieces themselves. Some games, such as this "Line of Four" Boom Card game, even have numbers for students to reference when specifying their next move.

An articulation game being played on a laptop in a teletherapy session

Other games, such as this FREE "Click It" Boom Card deck, challenge students to find the duplicated picture and call it out before the other players. This is an example of how not providing remote mouse control can actually be beneficial, as it requires students to participate verbally.

A teletherapy activity on a laptop where students practice articulation sounds

Question Games are another way to spark lots of communication without the need for students to click anything. Create your own (or search) free Jeopardy-like game using You can also create or find free games on any topic using the website Baamboozle.

The website has tons of conversation-starting "Would You Rather...?" questions, and you can also find lots of "Would You Rather" videos on YouTube with a simple search (always preview the video first).

Presenting poll questions on light-hearted (yet high-interest) topics is another teletherapy activity that elicits language by encouraging students to share their opinions. And as a bonus, an index helps you quickly find questions for a particular speech sound.

A poll question activity being used in a teletherapy session

Brain Teasers

Most brain teasers don't require much clicking at all (only thinking and talking), so they're perfect for using in teletherapy. They're especially great for drawing in older kids that welcome a challenge.

You can find these brain stretching activities lots of places, but The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences has pages upon pages of them... all different kinds that will intrigue your students!

If want some brain teasers that are specific to speech therapy, these Boom Card decks contain word puzzles for specific speech sounds that are fun and different for articulation therapy. They're also great for language students or just session warm-ups.

A brain teaser activity for articulation therapy in a teletherapy session

Scavenger Hunts

Even without controlling the mouse, you can make your teletherapy sessions "hands on" with a scavenger hunt. Scavenger hunts allow you to target so many speech therapy goals, plus they're easy to adapt to any topic or theme.

All you have to do is present a picture of each item on the screen, and students show something similar that they have at home or school. You can also use digital books or videos to search for and talk about each item.

A scavenger hunt on a laptop being played in a teletherapy session with students without mouse control

Reading Activities

Of course, you can always screenshare digital books and articles for you and your teletherapy students to read together. But there's a whole lot more to reading activities than that!

Students working on social skills can read role play scripts presented on screen. You could show various forms of digital media, such as advertisements, newspapers, menus, etc. to work on various speech therapy goals including functional life skills and articulation and fluency carryover.

Having students read shorter texts can be used to target specific language skills. This Boom Card deck works on identifying the meaning of figurative language using the paragraph context.

Working on figurative language in a teletherapy activity


Videos are a great teletherapy activity because they tend to be engaging, but don't require any mouse control. There are many kinds of videos that can be used with various ages and goals, but here are some ideas:

Articulation Cards

Excuse me while I go a little more basic really quick, because sometimes SLPs need basic. Whether it be for screening, baseline measuring, drilling, or progress monitoring, SLPs love a quick go-to for getting good data.

These digital articulation cards can not only be screen shared (alongside any other activity using split screen), but also clicked to make a checkmark for each production. Seeing this keeps students attentive to the task and motivated to continue practicing.

Digital articulation cards on a laptop being used in a teletherapy session

Digital Object Building Activities

Websites where students can tell you how to make an object using the various parts are teletherapy GOLD, especially with younger students. Not only do they allow students to be creative, but they also encourage the use of precise and descriptive language.

ABCYa is one of my favorite sites for these sorts of building activities. They have everything from faces to treehouses to cupcakes, plus seasonal options such as Christmas trees.

ToyTheater also has a great scene creation activity. You can choose the background before adding various objects in different sizes to it.

Other Solutions for When You Can't Give Remote Mouse Control

In addition to all of the above ideas, there are many other teletherapy activities that you can use with students who are not remotely controlling a mouse.

Use whiteboard tools to annotate a PDF.

Many teletherapy platforms have annotation tools built in that can be used for many activities. In addition to using them on a blank whiteboard, students can mark up PDFs with underlines, highlights, shapes, etc.

Annotation tools work great for game pieces in simple games (like this person guessing game) and for activities that students would normally write on.

Using annotation tools for a game in a teletherapy session on Zoom

Share a Google Slides file.

You can share a Google Slides resource (using a link or from within Google Classroom) to work on together in real-time. As long as students are given the permission to "edit", you and one or more students are able to do the same activity.

Use Boom Live.

Similarly, Boom™ Learning has a feature called Boom Live that allows multiple users to play a deck simultaneously, each from their own device. As a teletherapist, you can invite students to play (using a PIN or link) and each person can see the mouse movements and controls of others.

Send printable pages.

This may sound old school, but sharing pages for students, parents, or school staff to print for use in therapy (or have them bring some blank paper) is another great option. This opens up a ton of new options for writing, drawing, and coloring activities (such as these articulation drawing activities) to keep students active

A printed articulation activity being played during a teletherapy session

Teletherapy SLPs may feel like they're stuck between a rock and a hard place (or many hard places) when they, for whatever reason, aren't able to give their students remote mouse control. But the truth is that there are tons of ways to keep students engaged even without the use of a mouse while they're working on their speech therapy goals.

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