About Me

My name is Cindy Montalbano. I’ve worked as a Speech and Language Pathologist for 20+ years in a variety  of public school systems.  I have some splintered years so it is hard for me to count exactly.  I received a Masters Degree in Speech Pathology from the University of WA in Seattle, WA and my Certificate of Clinical Competence or CCCs from The American Speech and Hearing Association or ASHA in 1992 .  When I started in this field it was possible to work in the schools with an undergraduate degree. I did this a few years before going on to a graduate school program.
I’ve had a number of job experiences in a variety of locations across the United States and even in Europe. I followed a military spouse until his retirement and had a new job setting every 3 to 4 years. My job experiences include working in an Indian Tribal School, The Dept. of Defense American Schools, An Early Childhood Program funded by  United Way, a county speech therapy service for special education classrooms in CA,  an augmentative communication consultant, feeding team, and district public schools from preschoolers through 12th grade.

I am currently working in an elementary school with K through 5th graders.
The profession has seen a number of changes over the years.  When I first started in the 1980s, a speech therapist was typically assigned to several different schools. They worked mainly in  isolation in any space that was available in a building.  Some of those spots were less than ideal.  I’ve worked behind stages, in the art supply closet and the ends of hallways.
Some school districts now see speech therapists as an intergral part of the building staff. They are part of the special education services, provide consultation to teachers who need guidance when working with children that have disabilities, and provide case management.   They are assigned to one or two schools and actually have an assigned room.

I have  started this blog for speech and language pathologist, speech graduate students, teachers, and parents.   I’m hoping it can be a source of ideas and materials to get kids talking.
There are many kids receiving speech therapy services in a variety of settings for a variety of reasons.  Speech and Language Pathologist (SLP) are the people who conduct an evaluation and actually determine if a child has a speech delay.  They are the  best professional to determine the specific speech and language needs of individual children and a plan for therapy.    Once correct responses are established during therapy, it takes practice to get children to  use them in everyday life.  In many cases the final goal is reached when a child can produce corrected clear “spontaneous speech”.

In order to give a child practice with specific grammatical structures, pragmatic skills, vocabulary, or speech sounds,  materials are needed to elicit and practice  specific responses.   There is a need to practice in a variety of settings with a variety of people.  I think most therapists can agree that getting good speech habits out of the therapy room can sometimes be the biggest challenge. Over the years I’ve acquired a collection of materials and ideas.  I thought it would be helpful to organize it and make them available to others who find the need to get a child to practice his or her speech in spontaneous utterances.  This site also serves as a tool box and record  for me.  I can look back and see some of the options I have explored the last couple of  years.

As you travel  through the pages,  you will find activities and downloads  you can use to elicit specific responses.   Many of the activities are meant to be printed onto card stock and cut into cards.  They should turn out to be the size of business cards.   You may feel free to use any of the activities  for  children on your caseload, in your classrooms, or your individual child.  Do not  copy them  for commercial purposes or place them on another site without permission.  It is OK if you  place a link back to this site.   I’m trying to respect  trademarks and copy-write agreements, so please let me know if I  have  inadvertently  infringed on any.  Your responses are my motivation so please  give me feedback on how activities work for you.  Tell me any difficulties you encounter.   I may be able to make improvements to the original.

All these materials are best used under the direction of a speech pathologist and I can not guarantee results.

© Cynthia Montalbano and In Spontaneous Speech, 2009. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material for commercial purposes without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Cynthia Montalbano and In Spontaneous Speech with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

 Cindy 2013 001 (2)



  1. I like your site too! I finally had a chance to look at it.
    Cindy L.Meester

    • cjmonty

      Thank you for the encouragement. I hope you find it useful. Our resources can be so limited in the school settings. Now I’m seeing more and more sites out there with some really good information and materials. Its amazing how many resources we have when they are shared.

  2. Paul

    I like your site. Very interesting info!

    • cjmonty

      Thanks for taking the time to comment. I’m not always sure if anyone is using the information. I guess that is the nature of blogging.

  3. Kristine

    Thank you for all the wonderful printables and activities. As a relatively new therapist who is “out there” in the school, there is little time for discussing therapy ideas with other therapists. Thank you so much for sharing your experience!

    • cjmonty

      Your comment made my day. Thank you for stopping in and taking the time to comment.

  4. Brenda

    I just found your site and love your materials. Thank-you so much for sharing them.

  5. Rachel

    Just found your site. What a wonderful resource! I’ve been working in the schools for 10 years. I love seeing what others are doing. Thanks!!!


    I will be making a switch from high school to elementary the coming school year and I think your site will be very helpful! Thanks.

    • cjmonty

      I’m glad to be of help.

  7. Hi Cindy-
    I LOVE this site and what a great resource for SLPs! Thank you for your kind comments on my site and for the Link reference. I will be referring others to your site as well. 🙂

  8. Love, Love, LOVE your website! So many great ideas and resources. You are so generous to share these materials with everyone. Thank you!!!

  9. jillkuzma

    Hi there! I recently found your blog and LOVE it! You have so many great resources – thank you so much for sharing and being so generous! I have a blog & website myself – I am going to add you to my blogroll. If you get a chance, can you check out my site and perhaps add it to your list of links or blogroll? I am a school-based SLP who focuses on sharing resources and lesson ideas for social language mostly. I’m in the Minneapolis area – the site is: http://jillkuzma.wordpress.com – thanks so much! Best wishes – Jill Kuzma

  10. Hello Cynthia,
    I think your blog is wonderful! Please take a few moments to look at my new app called Unus Tactus. It is intended to allow people with cognitive and/or motor deficits to have an easy to use cell phone. It also has multiple GPS features. If you have questions please contact me unustactus@yahoo.com! Thank you!

    • cjmonty

      I took a look. I can see where that app could be useful for some of our population.

  11. Erin


    I work for Online Speech Pathology Programs.net, a website that offers news and informational resources about speech pathology. We also strive to make our website a valuable resource for anyone who is interested in pursuing higher education and a career in speech therapy. To that end, we are doing research and evaluating resources from across the web to build a list that recognizes 100 top speech and linguistics blogs and websites.

    We are pleased to tell you that we have nominated In Spontaneous Speech for inclusion on our list!

    Should you be featured on the final list, we’ll provide a badge that you can display on your website and use to promote your site’s inclusion through your social media accounts.

    Once the list is published, we’ll be reaching out to other speech pathology blogs and websites to ensure maximum recognition for your site.

    Additionally, if you wish to nominate another speech pathology or linguistics blog or website that you feel is worthy of a spot on our list, please let us know. We’re always on the lookout for great online resources about speech pathology, and we’d love to include your recommendations on this list as well.


    • I am honored to be on your nomination list. Two sites that I would believe worthy of nominations are Cindy L Meester’s Blog and Caroline Bowen’s site, Speech-Language-Therapy.com. It is an oldie but goodie.

  12. Erin

    I’m following up with you regarding the list of the Best 100 Sites for Speech Pathologists being published at OnlineSpeechPathologyPrograms.net.
    I contacted you last week to let you know that In Spontaneous Speech had been nominated for inclusion, and I’m happy to tell you that your site made it onto the final list! You can see the whole list at http://www.onlinespeechpathologyprograms.net/speech-sites/
    Should you wish to promote your inclusion on your website, you can use the embed code below. If you’d prefer I send you the badge in an email, don’t hesitate to ask.

    We hope that this collection of websites and blogs about speech therapy, speech pathology, and general linguistics will be a useful resource for you, as well as anyone else looking for information about the subject, or even considering a career in speech-language pathology.
    Congratulations! If you have any questions about how to incorporate the badge into your site, please let me know, and I’ll be glad to help out.

    • I love your list. I know I will be using it. I would like a badge to post on my site. I managed to get the Ashasphere up so I think I may be able to get it up on my own. Thanks!

  13. Just ran across your blog! Looks like we started just about the same time! I also began working in the schools with a BS, and worked while going to grad school. Nice to “meet” you!

    • I am glad to meet you also. I guess there are still a few of us around. I’ll have to look at your blog.

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