Saying Thank You! Shoebox Therapy Fun!

I am so excited to be sharing one of my all time favorite language activities! But, before I get into it, I just wanted you know that I recently posted a quick little freebie on my shared blog, Speech Spotlight!  While Thanksgiving is over, you might want to download it while I am remembering to tell you about it and just save it for next year.  I hope your Thanksgiving was complete with warm feelings, family and food! 

Holiday present fun with a shoebox! Looks-Like-Language
You may know that I am very interested in building students’ social language skills while working on their language skills. I also believe in fun, functional activities wherever possible. What better activity this time of year than to work on language for opening presents and saying “thank you”?

All you need for this fun activity is an old shoebox, some small toys that will fit inside and paper to decorate the shoebox, if you wish. I used this without ever decorating it and my students couldn’t care less. They had a great time anyway!

Holiday present fun with a shoebox! Looks-Like-Language

To separate the inside, cut a file folder in strips that are as wide as the box is tall. Cut one strip to the length of the box. Tape it on both sides inside the center of the box. Fold additional strips in half, place them inside the box and tape them together like crazy until you have dividers that will stay stiff and make the inside of the box in 4 sections.

I promise you, the kids won’t care what it looks like inside as long as you have something fun for them to play with! You just need four compartments with a divider that is sturdy.

Now, for the box top.  Draw 4 squares on the top of the box. Leave enough space in between that the top has some support while the little ones are opening and closing the presents. I  left about 1.5-2 inches between mine.  Decide which way is the top, then cut out three sides of each square, being consistent. Razor cutters are great for this, but you can use scissors. Just punch a hole with one of the blades first to get you started. 

You can use this activity for the holidays and for your students’ birthdays, too! They just love the excitement of opening up the box and seeing what is inside. When I was using it, I taught it as a language activity at the beginning of the month, then kept it available for requesting to play for the rest of December, changing the toys inside every week to keep it fresh. Then, pull it out for a quick review on someone's birthday!

Saying thank you- Looks-Like-Language
Do you want even more ways to reinforce this functional language? Check out my interactive book! I hope you’ve enjoyed these activity ideas! What is your favorite way to use a shoe box in therapy?
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