Showing posts with label Language. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Language. Show all posts

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!

3 Tips to Help Children Handle 'NO'


How in the world do you teach children to accept ‘no’? While this is not always an easy task, these tips will surely help if you use them!

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. They don't have to be fancy, just a 'no' item and 2 choices on plain paper.

* 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. It is great practice for realizing that sometimes there is another choice that is okay. To read more about this, click here

Try out this step by step way, saving saying 'no' to their favorite choice being used only after your child is realizing that 'no' is not necessarily the end of the world. If they react with a meltdown, divert their attention if possible and go back to the last successful step the next day.


Note that the pictures are about cookies, but you can try this with toys, activities, or other favorites, too!


1. Make the ‘NO’ choice something that the child doesn’t like.

1. 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.

2. Make the ‘NO’ one of 3 equally liked choices.

2. Make the ‘NO’ one of 3 equally liked choices.

Switch them around from day to day just to help your child see that sometimes we run out of their favorites, or to learn that variety can be fine. Try these variations.


3. Make the ‘NO’ be the 2nd favorite.

3. Make the ‘NO’ be the 2nd favorite.
     
Have the favorite available, along with another choice your child likes.

4. Make the ‘NO’  be their favorite choice.


4. Make the ‘NO’  be their favorite choice.
Have 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.

5. 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.

One day, the box of their favorite cereal is empty, so they have to eat something different.

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! How did this work for you?

Autism: Teaching Play Skills with a Shoebox- Playground

What about play skills for your kids with ASD who don’t even know how to play? You know what I mean if you’ve seen your students do these:
•      Look at a toy and touch it, then walk away.
•      Use a toy inappropriately.
•      Play only with the same toy over and over.
•      Instead of playing, just lining up the cars/figures/blocks.

Tips for expanding the play skills of your students with autism!

To begin building their play skills, they need 3D play items all the way! 

So you have an excuse to go buy a new pair of shoes! Just joking, but be sure to save some shoeboxes.

Autism: Using shoeboxes to teach play skills by Looks Like Language
WHY A SHOEBOX?

Placing toys on a shoebox to demonstrate play has a few benefits:

* It stabilizes the pieces for kids with fine motor issues.

* The velcro helps the kids see where they need to move the figures.

* The hole at the end makes the pieces disappear to show that the task is finished.

The box stores all of the pieces nicely. Just take out two figures to start: one to model with and one for the child to move.

Increase the number of figures as the student learns the task. Then work on fading the box out of the play routine if the child’s ability to manipulate has improved with practice.

Shoebox Play for the Playground


Scrounge around for playground toys and figures that go with them if you don’t already have them. If you are lucky, you may find some inexpensive pieces at flea markets and yard sales!

Autism: Using shoeboxes to teach play skills by Looks Like Language
Your main playground piece goes in the middle. 
Leave room for 3-5 figures to fit on the box as if they were waiting in line to play.  

After you have them placed, draw a box at the other end for the figures to exit into. Having a visually clear ‘all done is SO important for working with ASD students, as it makes new tasks less overwhelming for them.

If the set up is clear visually, your students should be able to either imitate your model or move the figures with hand over hand physical prompting. This is not a following directions task! 

Once your students show that they have the idea, fade out whatever prompts you were using and then shoebox, as well! 

The photos to the left show two different playground play sequences for teaching kids who have very limited play skills and need steps broken down. 

Autism: Using shoeboxes to teach play skills by Looks Like Language
The sliding board photos show what the sequence of play could look like when your student is ready to have the shoebox removed. Notice how all of the figures disappear after the play sequence?

Once the physical movements of the play sequence are easy, it is time to add the language! 

The first step is using photos of your play sequence to make an adapted book and add the language there. 

Then move on to different play sequences. Adapted books and file folder sentence activities are my preferred way to go!

Don’t worry about adapting the toys with velcro, since your higher level students can still use them to play. Just take them out of the box! They may ask you at first why there is velcro on the toys, but then they ignore it. 

Warning: Don’t do what I did and store the pieces with velcro in a hot attic like I did and get a sticky mess! :(


Getting Started with Autism- free download from Looks Like Language!

Did you get the free Getting Started with Autism Guide yet? Check it out by clicking here

Don't miss this helpful freebie!

Enjoy! Linda

Scrounging for Therapy- Tips for Inexpensive Therapy Materials

Scrounging for therapy? Absolutely!

Preschoolers need to play, so that means you need a variety of materials to match your themes. Yes, it is extra work in the beginning, but the lovely thing about it is that once you have accumulated enough treasures, you can work on a wide variety of goals in your groups since the theme ties it all together!

Scrounging for Therapy- Tips for Adapting Inexpensive Materials
There are many inexpensive books, activities and other materials made for entertaining preschoolers that can easily be adapted for therapy. Surprisingly enough, you won't always find these at the Target Dollar Spot or the Dollar Store.

Keep your eyes open for sweet finds at pharmacies, grocery stores and other places where kids can get antsy!

Besides books, preschoolers often need props for everything to learn to play. Gather up as many theme related 3D items as you can at yard sales, supplement them with boxes, containers and assorted junk, and fill in the rest with paper pictures.

Scrounging for therapy- inexpensive ideas from Looks Like Language!
You know by now that I love page protectors. When I opened up the ones in my playground binder, these are the goodies that I found. 

The Playground Game is an open ended picture game from an old Sesame Street magazine. Remember that I recommended you look out for them at garage sales in my last post? This is a good example of why you should! You can easily make your own version, though with a great photo from a children's book or from a Google search. Just laminate it and cut it into large, simple shapes.

Scrounging for therapy- inexpensive ideas from Looks Like Language!
Check out this Sesame Street playground picture that got turned into a File Folder Sentence Activity! This is how the whole set got started.

This one was made for a student of mine who loved The Wiggles. It worked so well, I tried to figure out a way to use it for my more concrete kids at play level and developed File Folder Activities.


Scrounging for therapy- inexpensive ideas from Looks Like Language!
To the right is a plastic cling activity – heaven knows where I found it, but I sure wish I could draw like that! These activities are fun for giving directions and describing. Tell the student which kid to find by describing them. Then give directions for where exactly to place it in the picture.

Scrounging for therapy- inexpensive ideas from Looks Like Language!
Next comes a simple adapted book for the playground. It works well because there is one playground item per page with simple drawings to elicit the action as well as the label. If you work in a school, the Scholastic flyers the classrooms send out can be a great source for inexpensive books. 

Scrounging for therapy- inexpensive ideas from Looks Like Language!
Next is an example of a work sheet from a very old workbook that was modified to use an open ended group game. After providing a response, the students took a child and figured out where to put the picture based on how the child was moving. 

Work on expressive skills when the activity is done using a clean up game. Students love to be the teacher, so have them take turns telling about one of the pieces. If they used their target correctly, they picked up that piece. Count to see who got the most, and then everyone puts their picture back in the bag. Language and putting away help all at the same time!

But, what about the kids who don’t even know how to play? Come back next week to get some tips!

Enjoy!

7 Creative Tips for Using Dice in Speech/Language Therapy

How do you make 'work' more fun for middle school students? It can be quite the challenge! My middle school students function at an elementary school level in many areas, but as they've gotten older, they aren't as interested in board games as they once were. 


Being creative with dice to motivate your students!

Using dice has come to my rescue on more than one occasion when dealing with disinterested middle schoolers! Of course, elementary school students will love these games, too!


BASIC OPEN ENDED GAME

The basic, open ended game can be used for almost any goal. It is so easy to keep around and pull out when students are refusing to work. All you have to do is divide a sheet of paper into 6 sections and number each box.


Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language

The students can even do this themselves, choosing their color paper and deciding which of their targets will go in each box. 


Besides the fact that giving students choices can make them more willing to participate, the act of deciding gets them thinking and talking about what they have been learning in speech. 




Each student can be giving different types of responses and still play the same game! In the photo below, the student on the left is practicing /r/ in the final position. To get even more productions, have the student say the word the number of times that is rolled! The student on the right is using pronouns to tell about the pictures 


https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Articulation-Game-110-Picture-Cards-for-R-Speech-Therapy-1869077
STOP & GO GAME

How about using dice to get 100 productions of a target sound? This game makes it easier!

Cover a die with red and green paper on the sides and put tape over it. Students roll the die and keep producing words with their sounds until they make a mistake or roll a stop. Then it is the next student's turn. 

While they are waiting, they can place checks in the boxes, color or dot them if you keep track of how many productions they did. The first student to get 100 correct productions wins!

I made this into a freebie for you! Get it here.


Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language
DICE BINGO
Did you ever play Bingo with dice?  If you use two different colors to number the boxes, students can roll to see which box to answer about and cover.

This is a great visual way to build math skills for co-ordinates and quadrants and your students won't even realize it! 


Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language
DICE CONNECT 3

Connect 3 is a fun game that can easily be played with dice and a page with boxes!  I like to use different colored boxes to match my dice. Then I hide the dice in a bag and let the student take one out to roll.

After responding about the target in the matching box, they write their initials in the box. Any time that they fill in an adjacent box, they connect them. The person who connects three, or has the most pairs, is the winner.


Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language
DICE NARRATIVES

Narratives are such an important skill, which so many of my students lack. I bought some sets of soft foam math cubes at the Dollar Store and covered them with the stickers from my Story Grammar Marker set. I covered them with tape and I was ready to go!

Use any pictures that contain some story elements to get your students started. Students roll the dice and tell the information they want to add to their story. 

I have done this orally to help my students practice formulating correct sentence structures, but you could have students write their answers and form a written narrative, too. When they have figured out all of the elements, it is time to tell the story!


Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language
DICE VOCABULARY REVIEW

For a quick vocabulary review game, have each student write 6 of their target words on an index card. They roll the die to see which word to define and use in a sentence correctly to earn a point. I give them 7-10 rolls each and see which student got the most points when I need it to be quick!





Using dice in speech therapy makes it more fun! Looks-Like-Language
SPINNERS & DICE

To change things up a bit, sometimes I combine spinners and dice! My students need lots of practice formulating ideas into sentences, so sometimes I have them spin to get one idea to use and roll to get the other idea, then combine them in a concise, correct sentence.

The photo shows this idea using action photos  along with a question spinner, found in some of my sets. Students roll to get the picture to use and then spin the spinner to ask or answer using that question word about their picture.

My students often need thinking time before responding, so I like to do one round where everyone rolls  and another round where they take turns giving their answers. It may take a little more time, but I have found that the added co-operativeness and willingness to do the activity for longer compensate for the extra time! 

How do you use dice in therapy?

Enjoy! Linda

Practical Tips for Treating Echolalia

Echolalia in autism is a unique disorder to treat, and one that can be frustrating to work on. It definitely helps to have some basic information!

Basic Types of Echolalia


- Immediate echolalia is when a child with autism answers your question by repeating the question or echoes whatever you just said. 

- Delayed echolalia happens when a child with autism repeats something that was said earlier in time, often a statement that has been heard frequently or even sections of a favorite TV show or movie

Echolalic statements may or may not have communicative functions.

Helpful Resource Links

It is no wonder that echolalia can be confusing to the treating SLP!  You might find it helpful to read the research by Dr. Barry Prizant, which indicates that echolalia can occur for a variety of communicative, interactive and non-communicative functions. If you prefer to read his original research, click here for a free download.

If you’d like a more reader-friendly version, there’s a great condensed version at Indiana University Bloomington.

If you are looking for a parent-friendly version of echolalia and what can be done, this WikiHow article is excellent.


My Success Story


Get some practical tips for treating echolalia from Looks-Like-Language!

Using visuals is the best strategy I have found in working with students on the autism spectrum. Did you figure out the statement in my picture, courtesy of Smarty Symbols? A picture is worth a 1,000 words!

I have had success personally in treating young children who demonstrated immediate, communicative echolalia. Instead of answering questions, the only strategy these children had was to echo the question. 

This seemed to be a positive event that indicated that the children actually understood that they were being asked a question since the echolalia did not occur when they were given a simple direction that was understood or asked a question that they knew the answer to.

Because of this, my feeling was that the echolalia meant they couldn’t process the question they were being asked and formulate a response, but they understood that a response was required.

Activity Tips

Visual supports are an important part of the strategies that work. 

* Make sure the child is looking a directly at what is happening (joint attention) and then use simple language that tells about what is being done.

* Make sure that the language literally and directly relates to the ongoing activity.

* Model the language multiple times, pointing at the visual support, before ever asking for a verbal response.

* Repeat one action, providing a model yet again, and then ask a question to elicit the response, immediately modeling the response verbally and visually by pointing at the words or word symbols.

* If the child still echoes the question, model the language with a little more emphasis and stop the action.

* Don’t start the action again until the child gives the desired response. Use the visual to help the child point at the pictured words in the response if you don't get a verbal non-echolalic answer.

* Repeat the question and the response as the action begins again, with more emphasis on the answer than on the response.

* Repeat as needed! Practice, practice, practice!

Literacy Tips

Literacy tips for autism and echolalia from Looks Like Language.
Using pictures in a literacy activity, where the pictures show exactly what the words being used meant, is very helpful since pictures last for processing time.

* Find a book with repetitive text that models the same language you are using in your activity.

* Make your own, if needed, using a set of pictures that show variations of the activity while the language remains the same. It is great to include photos of the child doing that activity!

* Don’t downplay the importance of written text and/or visual symbols even for young non-verbal students. Children with autism who are nonverbal can be hyperlexic and may make sense of the written words first, using that as their cue to understanding the oral language.

Involve Parents!

I made a personal book for a student I had who could answer “What is it?” by labeling nouns, but had no other functional language and immediate echolalia.  Every day, therapy culminated in gluing a picture related to the day’s activity in his book.  

The related question was on the left-hand side of the page, with the pictured activity and a phrase or sentence written under it on the right side of the page. This book became his bedtime story every night. The parents used my modeling technique at first, but by the end of the year, my hyperlexic two year old read the entire book himself and used that language functionally.

Use Visuals and Scripts

* Use the list of possible functions for echolalia from Dr. Prizant to make a hypothesis about what the child is using the echolalia for. This will help you determine a more appropriate way of communication to model.

* Make your modeling visual as well as verbal! Use pictures that SHOW the language.

* Use scripted words, phrases or sentences with symbols and/or written words.  Scripted basically means a functional, communicative phrase or sentence that is visual and modeled/practiced in a communicative context until the child can use it to communicate independently.

* If the words are being used for non-interactive and non-communicative functions, using procedures to extinguish this behavior during interactions and activities may be the way to go, while also working on expanding communicative and interactive skills.

* If there is a communicative function in the way the child is using the echolalic utterances, do the same thing we do for all of our students with language needs!
Set up the situation, model the desired response, pause, model again and wait for a response. Just be sure to provide a visual way to respond using pictures, symbols and written words to match the verbal words you are modeling. 

* Pointing to the visual while modeling the auditory often helps students with autism make sense of the words. It also gives you a way to physically prompt the modeled response, with assisted pointing, before the student becomes too frustrated.


Get Started with Autism with this free download from Looks Like Language!
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