The Halloween Challenge Continues! Play and Learn

Turning trash to Halloween treasure- that is part of what this Halloween speech/language therapy challenge is all about!  If you have missed any of this series, start here. Be sure to catch the freebie in this challenge!

So... 
One set of Target Dollar Finds.
One set of old materials.
One experienced SLP.

That would be me! I'm Linda, the very busy SLP from Looks-Like-Language.  Don't ask me why, but I have a hard time throwing out containers. Especially re-usable containers. I've also noticed that I come up with therapy ideas when under pressure. It can be the every half hour pressure of our work lives, when students walk in the door and you know that your plan won't fly without some modifications, or, as in this case, when I have the pressure of this challenge! 

The Halloween Challenge Loot! Looks Like Language
I used two of my Target finds in today's challenge. The skull erasers don't erase well at all, but they are really fun to toss! The spiky little balls are another fun find. The old part of the challenge? I had a empty wipes container to recycle, but when I looked at the wiggly opening, it said 'monster' to me! 

Then, I needed something to address my students' language goals, so I chose Halloween Costume Bingo, an inference game I made a while ago and recently updated. Tossing an eraser on your answer to cover it always makes the learning a little more fun, whether you are using the riddles, the word cards, the inference set or a combination of the three to meet your groups' varied needs!

My students have a lot of problems with literal questions still, often due to a lack of experience and a limited knowledge base, making inference questions even harder. But, being able to make inferences is a really necessary skill for both school work and for daily life social situations.  So, how to get kids who are literal (SO literal) up to the level of being able to make inferences? My solution has been to start with a basic theme, Halloween in this case, build the knowledge base and transfer the skill from literal to nonliteral by using pictures to help make the connections.
Ideas for learning to infer- The Halloween therapy challenge-Looks-Like-Language

Riddles, with picture cues, are a good way to begin helping students learn to give details and then make inferences. If they have a limited selection of pictured choices, they can learn to listen and connect the clues to one of the items in the pictures. The bingo costume game boards are in this photo, but if that provides too many choices for your students, just cut one of the boards apart and make lotto strips instead.

Once students recognize details about the costumes, it is time to move on to expressive skills. I believe that if our students aren't capable of recalling information to tell about an item, they certainly aren't going to be able to call it to mind and then use the details to make an inference from them.

Enter my monster game, thanks to the wipes container. 

Hungry Monster:
Toss one of the skulls and see which word card it lands on.  It is the student's job to tell 3 things about that costume/item to keep the skull. If not, the hungry monster eats it. Take the card away after a student has given information about it. When all of the cards are gone, see who has the most skulls at the end!

Save the day:
Make a prediction: Will you be able to save the day and get the spider balls back into the haunted house? Or will the monster eat them all? Roll one of the spider balls and see which card it lands on. Again, tell 3 details about the item to toss the ball back into the haunted house. If you can't think of 3 things, the monster will gobble it up!

Kids love to play games and make believe. If they seem like they are a little too old, they often still enjoy the challenge and being able to toss some balls around. Play makes life a little more fun! Varying the game and the cards being used builds skills and keeps you from getting the comment, "But we already did this!" quite as much.

Find the things you need to use this idea here:

The haunted house clip art is free from Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah.
The fuzzy monster graphic is free from Amazing Classroom.com.
The Halloween Costume Bingo Game can be found at my store.

Have fun playing and learning!
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