One of our more popular posts here on The OT Toolbox is our post on classroom sensory strategies
. For kids who struggle with attention challenges, general sensory processing needs, auditory processing
, self-regulation, or other needs, a whisper phone can be a power tool when it comes to reading or processing auditory information. Below, you’ll find information on how to make a DIY whisper phone for only $3 and how a whisper phone helps kids of all ages! Plus, we’re sharing where we got this awesome idea to make a whisper phone that kids will love! For more sensory play ideas
, stick around!!
Affiliate links are included in this post.
DIY Whisper Phone
When it comes to therapy tools and equipment, finding the best deals is ideal. But even better is when you can make your own therapy tools at a fraction of the cost and still benefit from the therapeutic benefits. This DIY whisper phone is just the example. In fact, a whisper phone on Amazon
costs more than $6 so when you are shopping to fill the needs of a classroom or caseload, the DIY version can be a fun alternative.
What is a Whisper Phone
First, you may be wondering “What is a whisper phone“…read on to find out what exactly a whisper phone is and how they can be so beneficial to so many kids.
Typically, a whisper phone is a tube shaped like a phone that can be held at the child’s ear and mouth. They can whisper sounds and words and clearly hear individual sounds without background noise.
They are a great tool for kids with auditory needs AND kids without auditory processing issues. Whisper phones can be so helpful in teaching any child to recognize sounds of letters! Kids can use a whisper phone to hear themselves read, which helps them with comprehension and fluency through auditory feedback.
A whisper phone is a tool that can be so helpful for kids with auditory processing needs or other concerns that interfere with a child’s ability to focus on auditory input. These kids sometimes struggle with pulling out important information from auditory input.
Other times, a whisper phone is used in reading to help kids recognize sounds in words, including pronunciation, fluency, and reading comprehension. This can be helpful for kids without auditory processing needs too!
How to use a Whisper Phone to help with Auditory Processing
Auditory processing challenges can look like a variety of things: poor listening skills, difficulty with language comprehension, auditory sensory sensitivities, or other listening concerns.
Using a whisper phone can help with skills like:
- Auditory discrimination
- Auditory sequencing
- Auditory memory
- Auditory figure-ground discrimination
A whisper phone can be used in many ways:
Sound out letters to help kids recognize the sounds associated with each letter. This is SO important in kids whom we later see in therapy who can not associate letter formation and struggle with handwriting and formation!
Sound out words to identify parts of words.
Auditory feedback when reading.
Provide a calming sensory diet activity.
Improve self-confidence with reading skills.
Discriminate between sounds and background noise.
Identify tone and volume of speech.
So much more!
How to make a DIY Whisper Phone
We were inspired to make a DIY whisper phone when we saw a fun activity in the new STEAM Learn and Play Book
. This whisper phone is not the traditional hand-held style, but more like the traditional can phones from the therapist’s childhood!
We made a whisper phone that can be used with two children and is a fun way to address the needs described above.
To make a DIY whisper phone, you’ll need just three items. We gathered these items at our Dollar store, making the DIY whisper phone a great deal!
- Two small funnels
- One tube
To make the DIY whisper phone, just connect the funnels to a tube. The bendy tube that we used was long enough to reach between two friends.
If the tube doesn’t fit exactly, use a bit of tape to hold the tube in place.
Then, play and learn!
This whisper phone is so easy to make that kids can make it themselves. In fact, it would be a great group activity for a small group in a camp setting.
STEAM Play & Learn Book
We got the idea to make a whisper phone from the new STEAM Play & Learn
book written by Ana at Babble Dabble Do. What a fun book this is for hands-on activities that kids will WANT to do while learning and playing.
Each page is full of colorful activities that teach.
There are so many fun ways to explore science, technology, engineering, art, and math with this book. For parents or teachers looking for a complement to a specific curriculum, this book is it. Kid can explore so many areas while learning through hands-on play.
The OT in my LOVES the tactile experiences shared in this book! Check out some of the ideas below:
Looking for more ways to address sensory needs?
You will love our Printable Sensory Diet Cards that cover so many areas! There are activities and ideas to address auditory processing needs, plus every other sensory system. Grab our Sensory Diet Cards for a complete packet of sensory activities. You’ll find 24 pages of 345 sensory diet activities including:
These sensory diet cards can be used in the home, classroom, or clinic. They are available now for $9.99 on The OT Toolbox shop.
Read more about the challenges of auditory processing disorders.
Fall Leaf Auditory Processing Activity