Spring Fun Freebie 4

Get the last part of the packet now! Spring Color Match Fun by Looks Like Language
I'm excited to tell you that the last section of my updated Spring Color Match Freebie has a new worksheet for sorting what belongs in spring time. You can download it here.


Learn playground labels, actions and rules with the activity packed At the Playground! set.
Going to the playground definitely belongs in spring! This activity packed literacy set build vocabulary for playground equipment and actions, spatial concepts to answer Where questions, and a variety of worksheets to make your mixed groups easier! Check out At the Playground at my store.

5 Important Reasons to Combine Books & Play in Therapy


Books and play are my two favorite therapy methods, so what could be better than combining the two? Sometimes people think that all SLPs do is play, so how hard could that be? They’d be surprised if they tried to accomplish specific goals in maybe an hour or so a week!

5 benefits to combining books and play in therapy:

Kids who are engaged are more willing to learn
Using play and the language for play also helps improve their symbolic thinking skills.
Using adapted books helps them understand and engage with books, improving their literacy skills.
Using therapy methods and materials that are part of their environment helps to promote generalization, or carry-over.
They are both so much fun!

Have fun with Spilt Milk at Looks Like Language! Freebie, too!
Spring is a fun time for incorporating a cloud/rain theme to go along with the saying, “April showers bring May flowers.” My favorite book to use for that theme?  It Looked Like Spilt Milk by Charles G. Shaw.

Adapting the book
Did you know that there is a great website from the Baltimore City School system that has Boardmaker symbols for books all ready to download? For FREE! What a huge timesaver if you have Boardmaker already installed!
Get the list of all of the adapted books here. Or you can start with the downloadable zip files, starting with the letter A here.
Unfortunately, It looked like Spilt Milk used to be available, but no longer is. Maybe I should make that freebie for my newsletter members- what do you think?

Have fun with Spilt Milk at Looks Like Language! Freebie, too!
Games & Skills


Since VISUAL DISCRIMINATION SKILLS are a must for any students using a symbol system to communicate, the shape matching nature of this book makes it a great choice to use with students who are developing literacy skills. Additional shape matching activities can be found in the book companion at my store.

You know that I loved using Ellison cutters when I was in the schools (free), and now many people are buying home versions like Sizzix or Cricut machines. (expensive)
No worries, though, as you can just download the cloud shapes here and do some old fashioned tracing and cutting on construction paper instead.

Cloud faces with the basic EMOTIONS are always cute to use!
Make a pile face down, elicit a target from your student and then let them choose from the pile. If you have 4 emotions, you can have 4 winners!
Instead of picking randomly from a pile, stack each emotion in a deck and students can take turns requesting the emotion card they want.

Clouds with different colors, sizes and shapes add DESCRIPTIVE WORDS to their language!

Mixed groups?
Try using tape or fun-tak to attach other pictures to the back of the cloud shapes. In the picture, I have pieces to a Sesame Street puzzle attached to use as a puzzle token board. The student knew that when the puzzle was completed, the task was done.
Give each student a set of their own clouds with their specific targets. Place the free cloud page that you downloaded in a page protector so students have to cover all of the shapes.

SPEECH SKILLS- Tape pictures with the target sounds on the back or write the word using a dry erase marker on the clouds if they are laminated. Easy!

LANGUAGE SKILLS- It doesn’t have to be fancy. Just cut out the pictures from a worksheet that you can give for homework and tape them on the back to practice first!

Have fun with Spilt Milk at Looks Like Language! Freebie, too!
There are so many more fun activities in my book companion. Besides giving little ones an easy way to start using the strategy of looking back in the text to recall story details, there’s a cute open ended game board, and rhyming and phonology activities, too. 

But I think my favorite is the cloud shape matching boards! Check it out here!

Enjoy!

Spring Fun Freebie 3

Quick, easy, colorful and fun! This describes the freebies that are offered on Looks Like Language all year long to make your life easier.

Free printable spring fun from Looks Like Language!
Get the third part of the packet in this week's download here and use it to practice any work your students need to review.


Make sentence building easier with pictured activities! Looks Like Language
For learning new skills, packets that are more specific are helpful for teaching. If your students need some work on forming sentences, check out Sentence Building Activities with Pictures: Spring!  Picture supports are so helpful for all students, especially those with language and auditory processing difficulties. 

Enjoy!

Spring Fun Freebie 2

Spring is a time of change. When the weather gets nicer and everything starts to grow, it is a welcome change for most of us.


Have some free, printable spring fun from Looks Like Language!
You can have fun with these free printable activities as a part of your spring theme! The game with chicks, bunnies and eggs is open ended. Get it here. Did you miss the first part? That's okay. You can download it here.

Children with autism or anxiety issues may have come to perceive change as something scary, however, especially when they aren't really sure what a change will bring and can't communicate their fears. 

Spring is a great time to incorporate the word 'change' into your activities, so that your students can associate the word with some positive things, too.

If you'd like some more tips for this idea, try reading these blog posts:

Transition Problems: & Questions SLPs Need to Ask

Change Can Be Hard: 7 Tips for Students

Enjoy!

Spring Fun Freebie

Have some open ended printable spring fun- free from Looks Like Language!
Spring is such a welcomed season after a long winter! When everything starts to grow, bunnies, chicks and eggs are a natural theme. 

Download this open ended free set and have some fun! Just click here.


Have some spring literacy fun with this adapted book activity set from Looks Like Language!
For more spring fun, build some literacy skills with this cute repetitive text adapted book at my store.

There are lots of activities built in to make your mixed level groups easier!

Enjoy!

9 Great Tips for Adapting Materials You Already Own!

9 Tips: Adapt Materials for Therapy that You Already Own!

Therapy doesn’t always have to be expensive, if you use materials you already have around the house creatively! It also helps if you have garage sales in your neighborhood or if you know people that have kids. Don’t be afraid to ask them to let you go through their kids’ toys and books before they get rid of them!

Adapting items you have takes a little time, but building up a supply of activities around a theme makes working with mixed level groups much easier! Being able to mix and match the materials for different groups’ needs also keeps you from having to do the exact same activity all day long. These examples have a pet theme; so fun to do in the spring.

Check out these 9 easy to implement tips for adapting materials you already own for therapy!
Tip 1: ORGANIZE AND KEEP COLLECTING!
Buy some inexpensive boxes to keep the toys and books you’ve found for each theme all in one place. Add to the theme as you find inexpensive items.


Check out these 9 easy to implement tips for adapting materials you already own for therapy!
Tip 2: GET SOME PUZZLES!
If you have students with low level skills or minimal language, puzzles that have separate pieces of whole items are worth spending some money for.
Students can:
• Request the pet they want to place. (labeling)
• Find the pet that makes the sound. (auditory skills)
• Find the pet who swims, flies, etc.  (action vocabulary)
• Find the pet who eats carrots, wears a collar, etc.  (word association skills)
• Request a black pet, a flying pet, etc. (describing)

Tip 3: BOOKS! MUST HAVE BOOKS!
Find varied books on that theme with different levels and great pictures. This will let you build literacy skills while choosing the book that is easiest to elicit the specific language each groups is working on.

Check out these 9 easy to implement tips for adapting materials you already own for therapy!
Tip 4: ADAPT


Taping symbols over the book text to adapt it to be a simple repetitive book is simple to do. Just adapt the size of the symbols so that the original text is covered and use a wide roll of clear tape that extends past the paper to hold it firmly in place. The book in the photo is still in good shape after 20 years. Don’t use school tape, though, as it will yellow and peel.

Tip 5: USE BOOKS TO BUILD SYMBOLIC PLAY!
This book has repetitive text for what the pets eat. Use craft glue to put small pieces of the foods in the bottom of empty, clean plastic fruit cups. It dried clear, keeping the pieces from falling out and kids from trying to eat them. After each page, the students could put the toy animal in the matching food cup to ‘feed’ them.

Check out these 9 easy to implement tips for adapting materials you already own for therapy!
Tip 6: MIX & MATCH!

Having many items in the same theme to mix and match is so useful!
• Therapy stays interesting
• There’s lots of opportunities to label and use or expand language skills.
• Combining items in different ways aids generalization.
• Building skills with different play combinations helps students to develop symbolic play.

Check out these 9 easy to implement tips for adapting materials you already own for therapy!
   Tip 7: SAVE YOUR SHOEBOXES
(Honestly, I am not a shoe shopaholic but little kids grow into new sizes quickly!)
Admittedly, it can be a pain to cut through shoeboxes, but they offer such inexpensive ways to incorporate hands on fun and lots of language!

After warming up by labeling the pets with the puzzle, you can have some pretend play!
"The animals are inside, but they are hungry. Let’s take them out."
 "Who wants to eat first?"
"I think I hear “meow.” What is it? Let's open a door!"

You can emphasize concepts, sentence structure, question words, auditory skills, you name it!
Students who are minimally verbal can respond using the pet symbols you made by taking photos of the puzzle pieces, or the puzzle pieces themselves.


Check out these 9 easy to implement tips for adapting materials you already own for therapy!
Tip 8: TURN WORKSHEETS INTO PLAY!
Worksheets with pictures are great to turn into hands on activities.
In the photo, you can see examples of:
• Sticker activities that are laminated and turned into a pet shop game. One set is an enlarged version so that the students had to specify the big/little pet.
• Shape matching pages turned into a game.
• Hidden picture pages put into a page protector to make a matching activity using pet symbols. The pictures of the hidden animal were colored in this set for a student who was just beginning to visually discriminate.
• A trading card plastic page that was adapted with symbols for students to match the associated pet and say the sentence.

Check out these 9 easy to implement tips for adapting materials you already own for therapy!
   Tip 9: USE ANY SUPPLIES YOUR SCHOOL OFFERS!
My school had Ellison cutters and construction paper available. Adding pet photos on the back before laminating made a simple game. Students requested the color cat or dog and then turned it over. 

The visual support helped the minimally verbal students form a sentence while the more verbal students used correct grammar in their productions.


https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Adapted-Books-for-Autism-and-Speech-PETS-Themed-Activities-3121563
As always, TpT can save you so much time with high quality materials! 

Check out my Adapted Books: PETS Themed Activities and add your own toys for some interactive fun!


Enjoy!

St. Patrick's Day Activities 4


St. Patrick's Day, free, printable, activities, game

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

I'm posting this a bit early this week so that you have time to download and use the last cards of the set this week. I told you that I was having fun updating this set, and I just kept going!

You can do so much with this free set! Play the open ended board game to work on any skill, print duplicate sets of the cards for matching fun, and elicit language for spatial concepts and possessive pronouns! Download it here.

Did you miss the rest of the set? You still have time, just click here.

Lucky you! Enjoy!

St. Patrick's Day Activities 3

Have an easier time planning for St. Patrick's Day with these free printables from Looks Like Language!
Are you having an easier time planning some St. Patrick's Day fun with the free downloads you are getting here?

I know how much work is involved in planning every day, so I'm happy to help you out and provide some quick and easy activities to build children's skills!

This fun, free set coordinates with the free open ended game board in my St. Patrick's Day Activity set at my store.  You can work on any skill with the printable game board, or use these card sets to play color matching games and elicit spatial concepts, pronouns he/she and possessive pronouns his/hers.

Aren't you the lucky one! Get this week's free set here.

Did you miss some of the sets? You can get started here.

Enjoy!

3 Tips to Help Children Handle 'NO'


How in the world do you teach kids to accept ‘no’? If I had a sure fire way to teach and  guarantee this, my name would be known world wide!

no, temper, tantrum, meltdown, choice boards
My friend, Lisette, over at Speech Sprouts, asked what I did to help kids understand and accept 'no'. It takes a lot of work and very few 2-3 year olds will easily accept 'no' for something they truly want! But there are some strategies you can use to help kids start moving along the path to accepting ‘no.’

Don’t ask a yes/no question! Give choices instead.
Be careful how you word your questions! Asking a child, “Do you want A ?” implies that you are asking them for their wishes. This leaves it open for them to say, “No, I want B.” when B is not an option. Then you have to say “No.”

Instead, try “Today we have A or B. Which one do you want?” While some kids will then reply, “I want C!” this leaves it open for you to say, “I like C, too, but today we get to pick from A or B.”  You notice that this response did not include the ‘N’ word! Sometimes just hearing that word sets some kids off!

Choice Boards
To do this visually, use a choice board! Visuals are important to help kids see the choices, even for verbal kids. While they see the 'no’ symbol, they also see that there will be other choices available. Without the visual, they will hear the 'no' and can have a meltdown before processing the other choices.

Carefully Sequence the Options
First, help your students understand 'no' (whether visually or verbally) in the context of structured activities where it doesn't have an emotional impact. Then build up to hearing ‘no’ when it actually is something that the child wants, after they have seen that there will be other options that are good, even if not their #1 choice.

Note: Some students may just not be able to handle ‘no’ for various reasons, but don’t make the mistake of giving in to tantrums or outbursts by giving them what they want! As painful as it can be to out wait a sobbing or screaming child, you will only be making it more likely that it will continue if you give in!

Work a deliberate sequence of choices into your daily routines, but don't start with your kids' most favorite choices. Here is one way it could be done.

Make the ‘NO’ choice a 'no' for someone else.

See this picture? I  never had a kid get upset when they couldn't feed a make believe chocolate cookie in shoebox play. To read more about this, click here.

no, temper, tantrum, meltdown, choice boards
   •Make the ‘no’ choice something that the child doesn’t like.
This is a great place to start for kids who just react to the word. Hearing ’no’ gets a bit of desensitization when it is used for something unwanted.

no, temper, tantrum, meltdown, choice boards
Make the ‘no’ one of 3 equally liked choices.
Switch them around from day to day.

no, temper, tantrum, meltdown, choice boards
    •Make the ‘no’ the 2nd favorite, where the favorite choice is available.

no, temper, tantrum, meltdown, choice boards
Make the ‘no’ the favorite choice, with the 2nd favorite available.
 It also helps to have an empty chocolate chip cookie bag available for the child to see that there are no cookies in it. This can make settling for 2nd choice easier.

Build sabotage into your daily routines!
One day the crayon box can be empty, so kids have to choose from markers or colored pencils instead.
One day, the Lego basket is empty, so they have to choose a different building toy instead.

You get the idea! Learning that there are changes and new choices to be made in life is tough learning for little ones, especially anxious little ones! But by presenting it in a way where there are positive outcomes as well as negative ones, many children can start to take it in better stride.  No miracles, just slow, hard work.

Good luck!

St. Patrick's Day Activities 2

Lucky you! Get free St. Patrick's Day printables at Looks Like Language!
Are you feeling lucky yet? I was having so much fun making these cute game card sets to elicit pronouns and possessives that I just kept going! You will have an easy, fun set to play with this holiday!

Get this week's free download here

If you missed the first set, click here.

And don't forget to download the open ended game board at my store. Be sure to leave me some lovely feedback while you are there!

Enjoy!

St. Patrick's Day Activities 1

Whether you've been having snow days or summer days this month, the weather has been a bit extreme this year! St. Patrick's Day is around the corner, no matter what season your weather is, so I'm giving you a chance to start your planning early this year.

Free St. Patrick's Day activities at Looks Like Language!
I've updated and expanded my freebie from last year, so be sure to download each week even if you did so previously. All of the cards that you will get co-ordinate with the free St. Patrick's Day Activities set at my store.

If you like it, I'd love for you to give me kind feedback as a thank you for my time! If you don't like it, just move it to the circular file and better luck next time!

Once you have downloaded the free set from my store, get this free download and be sure to check back weekly for more co-ordinating cards!

Improve listening skills and using sentence context while building vocabulary for homophones!
If your students are higher level, you might want to check out this picture filled St. Patrick's Day vocabulary set for homophones that also works on listening skills and using sentence context to determine the missing word.

Whether you are Irish or not, you are in luck! And remember, my newsletter followers get additional tips and freebies, so be sure to sign up now!

More Shoebox Play Tips: EAT! A Visual Blog Post

Hi! I'm glad you are here! 

More ideas for shoebox play (EAT!) and how to develop skills from there!
I was so excited to be featured on The Speechie Show and wanted to give you some more ideas about the shoebox play I showed there.

If you missed it, you can see me live here! Then this post will make more sense!

If you are looking for more shoebox play ideas, click here for car play and here for playground ideas.

I hope you enjoy this visual post!

More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!
More shoebox play ideas from Looks Like Language!

Many thanks to Barbara Bloomfield. Rest in Peace.
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