Smarty Symbols {Review}

Hi!  I hope everyone's school year is off to a great start!  Mine has been wonderful and crazy busy at the same time. My new kiddos on my caseload this year have come to me with some goals that I haven't tackled much in the past.  Several included communication boards or low tech AAC options.  I quickly realized I was going to have to make some language or communication boards to go along with therapy.  I didn't have a subscription to board maker or any other clip art that would be needed to make communication boards without buying individual clip art packs and that was going to be expensive! Please know that I am a beginner when it comes to making communication boards and I know these aren't perfect but Smarty Symbols has definitely made my job much EASIER!  Let's dive on in!

What is Smarty Symbols?  Smarty Symbols are a clip art service for teachers, speech-language pathologists and parents.  They are very seller friendly in that you are allowed to make and sell things (such as on TPT) with their images.  And let me tell you, they have a TON of images.  They also add more and more everyday.  I began playing around with it by using the printing center which I found out will pretty much make a communication board for you!

In the printing center they will give you a blank communication board template.  You can choose how many rows/columns.  I stuck with the 4x3 board to show you what it can do.  


You can also change the thickness of the squares as shown below.  On the right there is a search engine to quickly find whatever symbol/image you want to put on the board. 


I started making a demo board to show you what it looked like and just to play around with the features. When you find the image you want, you can drag and drop it easily into the square.  You can also drag and drop pictures around on the board if you decide you want them in a new place. The word below each picture was automatic (scroll down a little bit and see that you can change the word if you want).


Another cool thing about Smarty Symbols is that you can download each piece of clipart if you like to save them on your computer. My computer is pretty full of clipart so I don't plan on downloading a huge amount but it's nice to have the option. 


I really like the option to easily change what is below the pictures so you can really personalize it.  Also, a variety of skin colors, gender and hair colors are available for the images too.


Besides a communication board, you could also make picture schedules for kiddos who like to know what's coming next.  (For some kiddos I realize clip art may not be appropriate and real photographs may be a better fit but if you're looking for clip art Smarty Symbols probably has it!)


That wraps up the tour!  Overall, I am very glad I went with Smarty Symbols over some other communication symbol companies (Boardmaker, Symbolstix, etc.)  The terms of use that comes with the commercial license also allows you to sell and share items you make (which you all know I love to share!) and the price is lower than any competitor I found.  I plan on making a few AAC resources with Smarty Symbols so stay tuned!  Now to put those communication boards to use!

***Please note I was not paid for my review of Smarty Symbols, but I was given the yearly subscription at a discounted rate.***

2 comments:

  1. This is one of the best reviews I read in a long time. So well written... Now I realize I wrote almost like spamers do. LOL. Good Jon Deanna! Thanks for the review.

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  2. I would love to give these a try. I was also looking at Symbol Stix. Have you tried those and if so, do you have a preference?

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