March 26, 2017

Ideas as Fresh as Springtime {The Frenzied SLPs}

Spring has sprung! Thank the Lord!!! Even if it's still below freezing or you have snow on the ground, it's time to brighten things up inside. The Frenzied SLPs have your back and we're sharing fresh ideas for spring therapy. Here are my top five 🌼


1) Bring animals into the therapy room (if you're that ambitious!)

#chicksman

A few years ago I shared a classroom with the special ed teacher. Our school was in a small rural community, but not many kids actually lived on farms or had exposure to animals other than dog/cat/fish/gerbil pets. The SpEd teacher decided to bring a few baby chicks into our room for a few weeks in the spring and the kids were able to interact with them and watch them grow. They were so, so excited and it provided so many language and vocabulary opportunities! We were able to talk about what makes a good pet, make observations about how they grew (chicks change very rapidly!), compared and contrasted animals that give birth to live babies vs. eggs, and what makes a good pet. There's even research backing up the benefit of pets boosting social skills in kids with autism. I've also heard of therapists bringing in therapy dogs (swoon!). Are any of you doing this?

2) Sensory bins or water play

There are so many fun ideas for sensory bins out there! I started using them with my students a couple months ago and they have always been a hit. The participation and expressive language explode out of my students when these are on the table. Here are some ideas for spring bins that are inspiring me:

Garden bin from Mama Miss

Bird sensory bin from Anchored by Love

Easter egg water play from Momma's Fun World

Duck pond water play from Mama Papa Bubba

I highly suggest you try out a sensory bin this spring!

3) DIY matching foam eggs


A few years ago I found these foam eggs in the Target Dollar Aisle (♥) and made a pocket out of packing tape so I could switch out the pictures on the egg halves for different students. It was fun and I'll be busting this out again this year.




4) Spring-themed picture books


There are too many good picture books out to possibly get to them all, but if you're looking for some new ideas, I really suggest When Spring Comes by Kevin Henkes and Hatch by Katie Cox. When Spring Comes was just released in 2016, so I don't think many people have heard of it, but it's an informative book about waiting for spring to come and it has beautiful illustrations. Hatch is all about animals that hatch from eggs. It gives clues to the animals on one side, and then kids can guess and open the egg to see if they're correct.


5) New activity packets

Finally, if you're looking to update your material supply, might I suggest some of the spring activities in my Teachers Pay Teachers shop:





Happy Spring everyone! Be sure to check out the rest of the fresh ideas from The Frenzied SLPs below. If you'd like to share your own ideas, feel free to add a link below or comment on this post!



7 comments:

  1. Great ideas!!! Love the idea of animals in school. Our first grade teachers used to incubate eggs and hatch chicks. It was wonderful for the students. Sadly, class pets have become a thing of the past. Too much micromanagement in what is and isn't allowed in school. :(

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  2. Cracked egg shapes make such a fun activity! Thanks for all of the fun ideas!

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  3. Now I feel a HUGE urge to go buy some chicks!...or maybe a little frog...

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  4. Great idea to use the packing tape for pockets so you can switch the cards out!

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  5. I can't get enough of your Capture the Whole Picture products! My students love using them. I am quite certain animals in school would be amazing for bringing out the language. Sounds fun!

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  6. YEARS and years ago I could bring my dogs to school for therapy, and it always resulted in a cool language experience for my little ones. Since then, animals have been banned from our schools :( I haven't used sensory bins in therapy, but you've totally inspired me to do it!

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  7. I love having animals and pets at school! A word of caution about young animals-they are delicate and can be injured by little children who do not know how to handle them. Sadly, I have seen it happen :( Just be sure to monitor the children when they are touching the animals and it is a wonderful experience!

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