6 Reasons to To Teach Halloween Routines Using Toys


Play is always the best way to do therapy, in my opinion, especially with little ones! Kids pay attention more and learn more easily when they are having fun. What better time to have fun than Halloween?
Interactive Halloween Fun- Ideas from Looks-Like-Language
Shoeboxes are so useful for making therapy materials! Glue on some construction paper, draw a door and some pumpkins, or just decorate it with some Halloween stickers. Then, punch a hole to tie some string into so you can open and close the door easily. Look what a fun Halloween activity you have!

There are so  many reasons why it can be worthwhile to use your therapy time practicing Halloween routines.
*Kids who don’t have the language will have a harder time participating with their peers. Keeping the language simple, in a repetitive routine, lets kids get lots of practice.
*Using shoebox props imitates the real routine and can easily support symbol use/exchange.
*There are so many repetitive phrases and short sentences that you can use: Knock on the door. Open the door. Trick or treat. Thank you. Put it on. Take it off. Share with me!  Put it in. Take it out.
*Kids with motor speech problems benefit from the sing-song repetition and practicing the vowel change combination even if they can’t get the whole word.
*For articulation errors, there are so many costumes and candies, you are sure to find something that will get them practicing their target sound.
*For kids who get frightened by Halloween, learning the routine and playing with (a little bit scary) Halloween figures can reduce their fear.

Teaching Halloween routines- Looks-Like-Language
Recently I’ve noticed that there are some kids who just knock on the door and put out their hands for candy. Not even a thank you to be heard! No fun!  The word play is an important part of the routine.  Younger kids may not even know what the term ‘trick or treat’ means!

Using Halloween toys in speech/language therapy- Looks-Like-Language
Some of you may recognize these toys from your childhood!  They are a little bit scary but a whole lot safe and so many of the repetitive phrases above can be used. I started by having a new friend inside the box every day.  I’d introduce the name of the costume, find a book or activity  that reinforced the use, and let the kids have a little free play with the toys at the end of the session. 

Toys where the costumes come on and off are certainly worth keeping your eyes peeled for when you are at garage sales! What toys do you like to use at Halloween?
Happy Halloween from Looks-Like-Language

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