Thursday, March 27, 2014

Stop Sign Craftivity

I love to do simple crafts in speech with my articulation kids, because it's an easy way for parents to know what sounds we are focusing on for that week so they can reinforce at home! The kids love getting to come back to the classroom and show off what they made to their teacher and friends, too!

For transportation week, I came up with a super simple craft that takes virtually no prep time: Speech Stop Signs!


Literally- all you have to do is cut an octagon out of red construction paper and you're halfway there! Just make copies of pictures of their speech words (ie from the Jumbo Articulation Book), cut them out, and have them practice their words as they glue them onto the stop sign.  For extra practice, they can color the pictures while practicing, and then practice again as they're gluing.  Lots of opportunity for repetitions!

Do you have any favorite crafts related to transportation??

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

All Aboard! Train Activities for Transportation Week!!

Below is the very first post I wrote last Spring when I thought I wanted to start blogging, but never actually ended up publishing it (I wasn't in love with the original name for the blog that I came up with). Now that I'm starting to blog about activities for Transportation week, I thought it was as good a time as ever to finally publish this post!

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“Thomas!!!”
“I love Thomas!!”
“Can we play with Thomas today?? Pleeeeaaasssee??”


It’s Transportation Week in PreK, and thanks to Goodwill, Jenna @ Speech Room News’ “Train Articulation” cards, and a super awesome parent of a former student of mine that gives me her kids’ old toys/games, I’ve had LOTS of squeals/shouts of excitement about the spread of train materials we’re using in speech this week!  I had a Thomas game, Thomas trains, a wooden train station, and train articulation cards to kick off the week!


School SLPs always have jam-packed schedules with little time to be switching out a lot of different materials between each group.  We also typically have groups of kids with mixed speech/language goals, and it’s just not feasible to create different materials for every goal within the group for every session.  When possible, I sometimes like to try to adapt one set of materials to target a variety of goals, which is what I did with the Train Articulation cards (seriously one of the best $4 I've ever spent as a preschool SLP!).


Vocabulary/WH questions: Named the pictures on the cards and talked about their different parts (i.e. wings, beak, feathers, etc… for the “bird” card), and also answered WH questions about the items pictured (ie “Why does a bird have wings?” “Where does a sheep live? etc…)

Concepts: We talked about how the object pictured might feel (i.e. dog’s fur is soft, knife is sharp, etc…).  For spatial concepts, train cards were put on top of the station, under the station, in front of/behind/next to the station, etc…

Functions:  To address object functions receptively, I’d place 3 cards on the table.  I’d describe the function of one, and they would drive their train to the correct card, and then pick it up and “drive” it into the station.  To target this concept expressively, I gave them a card and they had to give the function before driving it into the station.  We tried to see how many cards we could get to the station before time was up!

Associations:  To target this receptively, I put one card at the top, and two cards below it.  One of the two cards on the bottom would go together with the top card.  I asked them to drive their train to the picture that would go together with the top card.  To target this goal expressively,  I picked two cards that went together and had them tell me how/why those two items go together, then they ‘loaded up’ their two cards onto the top of their train and drove it to the train station!


Basic Inferencing:  Some of my students were working on some basic inferencing.  II would set out 3-4 cards and describe one to them (i.e. for bird: “I’m thinking of an animal.  It eats worms.  It lives in trees.  It has wings”) and they drove their trains to the correct picture.


This is a little gem I found for $1.99 at Goodwill last summer. (Heck. Yes.) You can find it here on Amazon (it retails for about $23.. apparently a major score on my part!)


I used this with my artic students and after every couple words they practiced, they would draw a train card from the pile (I had the cards spread out face down on the table).  If it matches a train on their board, they keep it, and if not, it goes back in the pile.  The first to fill up their board wins!  

This also lent itself nicely to a mini social skills lesson on how it's okay to be frustrated that you didn't win, but it's not okay to shove the game off the table when you're feeling that way!! :)


PS- You might even be able to make a DIY version of this game by Google Image searching for different Thomas characters and creating your own board.


Making Learning Fun has a Dot Art page for trains, as well. The stampers/Bingo markers are a go-to activity that I use regularly!


Stay tuned for more general (non-Thomas the Train) activities for Transportation week!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Dr. Seuss Describing!

Last November, I attempted a DIY Hedbanz game with different types of dinosaurs to describe.  I used it with the afternoon prek kids in each classroom for my small group rotation, and they loved it.  They needed a bit of prompting to figure out how to describe each dinosaur, but in general, it went pretty well.  So, I decided to try it out again this week with Dr. Seuss characters!


I just did a Google search for Dr. Seuss characters and pasted them into a PowerPoint slide.  I printed off two copies of this page-- one to laminate and put Velcro on for the headband, and one copy for the kids to have in front of them so they had visual choices when guessing the character on their head. 

 
(The person before me forgot to take the colored copy paper out of the printer/copy machine and I didn't have time to print another copy, so I just dealt with it!) 

I also created visuals to help my kids give clues to their peers about the characters.  I split the objects up into "Person" "Animal" or "Thing" -- this is pretty subjective, since the characters are kind of a mix of both animals and people, but I just went for it!
I also created a couple additional pages of visuals to help them in describing.  If the character in question was an animal, they could tell the "guesser" where that animal might live (in a house, in the forest, in the zoo, or in water).  If it was a person, they could describe what the person is wearing.  If it was a "thing," they could describe what you do with it.  For every category, they could describe the colors found in the pictures.


It went really well, actually-- better than I had anticipated!  Some kids didn't *quite* grasp the concept of not telling what the character was (ie "It'd live in a zoo.. 'cause it's an elephant!"(insert elephant noise and imitation of elephant's swinging trunk with the kid's arm to his nose))-ha- but like I said, for the most part, it worked out!!  I think this would also be a great way to work on describing using the EET as the visual support, too!

Want to grab a copy of these visuals?? Since Dr. Seuss is majorly copyrighted, I can't give you anything that has his characters included... BUT, you can download this blank, editable page of separating between person/animal/thing HERE and the second page of visuals with colors/homes/clothing items & accessories HERE.

Enjoy!!

Monday, March 3, 2014

Green Eggs & Ham craftivity

Last week during our jungle/wild animal theme, I attempted a hippopotamus craft that ended up being a Pinterest fail-- thankfully, a new craftivity I have planned for Dr. Seuss week turned out much more successful! :)

I love, love, love the book, Green Eggs And Ham.  I've done craftivities for Cat In The Hat and One Fish, Two Fish, but haven't done one for Green Eggs and Ham yet!  Third year's a charm, right? :)


Just cut out a pan from black construction paper, and cut out some cooked egg-shaped pieces from green construction paper and you are good to go!

I found the idea here, and thought of some ways to adapt it for speech! I did artic words on this example, but there are plenty of other ways to use this, too.

Since frying pans are hot when you're cooking, I thought it would be great to tie in the concept of hot/cold for some of my little ones.  I also made pictures for sorting by category (breakfast foods vs dinner foods) to glue onto the eggs. Grab those pictures HERE.

My plan is to draw a line across the middle of the pan to divide the two categories, and then have them glue their hot item/cold item eggs and breakfast/dinner foods onto the pans in the correct spots (ie glue the eggs with hot items on the top part of the pan, and the eggs with pictures of cold items on the bottom part of the pan).

You could also work on food vocabulary by gluing pictures of the items onto the eggs.  Work on following directions with spatial concepts using vocab or articulation pictures and this craft, too (telling them where to glue the eggs-- "above" one picture, "next to" another picture, etc...)


One of my other favorite crafts to do this week is with One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish.  I got the idea from Busy Bee Speech last year, from this great post full of ideas!  She used watercolor paint for her fishbowl, while I just used blue construction paper.  I've written speech words on the fish, and worked on spatial concepts with this craft, too (put two yellow fish on top, put a green fish under a purple fish, etc...).

What are some of your favorite crafts for Dr. Seuss week? Stay tuned for more Dr. Seuss ideas later this week!