January 15, 2013

Good Find: Squishy Ball

one of my favorite toys to use with students of all ages


Target Dollar Aisle: one of the best places for inexpensive activities/games/toys/supplies. Last year I found these squishy balls there for $1 each and I have loved them ever since. I am able to use these with students of all ages, from early intervention to high school. And I have fun with them too! Here are some quick ideas for how to use them in therapy.


Articulation:
*Practice /s/ and /sh/ ('squishy'); /l/ ('ball', 'please'); /k/ and /ch/ ('catch'); /th/ ('throw')...and more!

Language:
*Target increasing utterance length and making requests with little ones
*Compare/contrast the two balls to each other
*I have two preschoolers who are nonverbal and working on total communication/signs. They light up when I pull these out of my bag. We use the squishy balls to work on signs for 'more', 'please', 'ball, and 'thanks'.

Vocabulary:
*describing words: squishy, spiky, green, orange, soft, smooth, up, down, fast, slow, high, low, etc;
*action words: throw, toss, catch, grab, squish, give, take, etc.

Reinforcement:
*Play hot potato with groups - students answer when they catch the ball
*Practice target articulation phonemes while tossing ball back and forth
*Have a competition to see how many consecutive catches can be made. Try to set new records!
*I even have a student who despises these toys. I simply set one next to me on the table if she is having a hard time staying on task and she jumps right back to work!


Bonus: When you squeeze the orange one the eyes pop!

Leave a Comment: What are your go-to quick therapy activities?

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