Friday, July 29, 2016

Cariboo: The game that keeps on giving!

I'm sure if you follow me on Facebook or Instagram, or have ventured to my TpT store, you know that I love Cariboo (I even made a new, additional vocabulary set this summer!).  I previously wrote a post on how I use Cariboo cards and also how I store my different card sets.  Cariboo was always my go-to game with my preschool population at my school job, but I left my school job and started a new job this summer where my caseload has been all Autism, at a Center that provides services for ages birth-6 years, in a classroom/outpatient therapy combo model.  The kiddos I'm seeing and the service delivery model are pretty different from what I was used to at my school job so I've had to change up my therapy a bit!

However, Cariboo is still one of my go-to activities. It's the game that just keeps on giving to me :) So, in this post, I wanted to share how I've been using it with my new caseload!

1.  Speech Generating Devices
I've been trialing the iPad as a communication device for 2 of my kids, and one of them LOVES Cariboo.  With his device, we've been able to use core words such as "I" "you" "go" "want" "in" "out" "turn" "more" and "finished"/"all done."  I've also been modeling two word utterances on the device; for example, the Cariboo balls "go+in,"  we "take+out," "put+in," "I+go" "you+go" "want+turn" etc...

One day, I didn't have Cariboo out, but the day before, we had been practicing "I go" "you go" and "want."  My little guy looked around and spotted Cariboo on the back counter, then used his device to say "want" "go" "want" "go" "want" "go" and then looked at me.  I said, "Oh, we practiced those words yesterday when we played Cariboo-- is that what you want to play?" and he nodded his head yes! #proudSLPmoment

2.  Picture exchange 
A couple of my kiddos are using a picture exchange system to communicate, and using an icon of the Cariboo key is a way we can practice requesting an object while playing this game.

3.  Verbs
One of my more verbal kiddos is working on using 2-3 word verb phrases, so we've been working on verbs that are more core-word based, like "put" "take" "go" "see" "want" "turn" and "open" (ie "put in" "put ball in" "take out" "take ball out" "I go" "you go" "see ball" "I see ball" "my turn" "open box" "I want").

In a few weeks, we're going to start working on labeling verbs, as well, and my new add-on set for Cariboo includes 90 different verb cards that we'll be able to mix and match as needed! This one below is from the camping-themed verbs set.

4.  Social Communication

One of my kiddos is verbal, but isn't yet using language spontaneously (and consistently) for purposes other than protesting, requesting, or labeling.  We're working on making comments to others and acknowledging others' comments, and a turn-taking game like Cariboo is perfect! We've been working on making comments like, "Look!" "I got one!" "I found it!" "It's a (color) ball" "It's my turn" "It's your turn" "Good job"  "You got one!"  etc...  (For the freebie communication board seen in this picture, check out this post from Speech Room News)

Do you love Cariboo as much as I do? What's your favorite way to use the game?


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  2. Yes! Cariboo is the perfect game for speech/language therapy. There are so many ways to use it, it's motivating for a wide variety of students (I've played it with 6th graders who loved it), and it's great for mixed groups. I can easily spend an entire 30 minute session just playing the game one time through if I require the students to complete some sort of language task as I put the cards on (e.g. "Tell me where the shoe should go - on the top, middle, or bottom row?"), as they hide the balls (e.g. "Where did you put the ball?" "Where do you think the ball landed?"), etc. They don't mind too much because it just builds the anticipation. I can also designate an entire week as "Cariboo" week and use it with all my students/groups, even when they come multiple times a week! Those weeks really save my sanity when things are crazy and I don't have a lot of planning time.

    Since the game itself is so hard to come by, I sewed up some hands-on activities that are Cariboo-compatible (they have clear pockets that fit the cards) that are available in my TPT store (Speech Cadet). My students like these activities too - almost as much as the game itself! It's a great way to use all the cards that are available on TPT even if you haven't been able to locate the game yet.

    P.S. I have your original language packet and the phonology packet. I frequently use the phonology cards without the game to quickly gather data. I really like the clipart that you use and the fact that the words/concepts are depicted really clearly.

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