Monday, December 9, 2013

Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree

It's been a little while since I've done a Movin' Mondays post, but it's back and with a Christmas theme this time!

I was browsing Pinterest for some winter/Christmas therapy ideas and came across this pin:  I loved the idea of decorating the tree for a therapy activity, so this activity was born!

It's just green bulletin board paper cut out in the shape of a tree, some different sized circle die cuts, and some Christmas light die cuts.  Pretty simple!  The circles are supposed to represent ornaments.  I just took small Velcro pieces and attached them to various parts of the tree, and then attached Velcro to the "ornaments" and lights.   I also attached small Velcro pieces to the fronts of some of the ornaments and lights, so I could put pictures on them.

In this picture, I attached pictures of some winter vocabulary words I've been working on with my prek kids. These are the Cariboo cards that are included in my recent winter language pack that's in my TpT store.   
In addition to vocabulary/picture naming, I can work on the following skills with this activity, as well:
*basic concepts (put an ornament at the top of the tree, at the bottom, in the middle of the tree, below a blue ornament, next to a light, etc...)
*categorization (i.e. "Put something you wear on a blue ornament" or "Put something you eat on a red ornament")
*object functions (they get to pick a picture to stick on a light or ornament, and have to tell me what you do with the object before placing it on the tree)
*WH questions ("What do you need to build a snowman?" "Where do you bake a gingerbread cookie?" etc...)

I can also target articulation with this activity, by using blank ornaments/lights as reinforcers (i.e. say your word 5x and then put up an ornament), or by letting them stick pictures of their speech words on ornaments and lights.  I've been using the pictures from Busy Bee Speech's "Don't Break the Ice" articulation card set (grab them in her TpT store here-- they're awesome!!) and they're the perfect size! Bonus-- I already have Velcro on them from attaching them to my ice blocks from my Don't Break the Ice game! I love when picture cards serve a dual purpose :)

This activity is pretty simple, but lets the kids stand up and move around a little bit (especially necessary this time of year with temps causing indoor recess!), and I love that I can easily address multiple goals in a group.  Even if you only used artic pictures, like the ones I mentioned above, you could target WH questions/functions/categories/concepts with those if you have a mixed artic/language group, and use those to decorate your lights and ornaments on the tree.  

Can you think of any other ways you might use this activity??

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