Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Low-Tech Happy New Year Tip!

This low-tech tip is great for working on narration skills or speech therapy. Like typical children, Pamela falls in a rut with word choices. If asked how she feels, she usually answers, “Happy” or “Sad.” When describing the emotions of a character in a book, she picks the same words: happy, sad, angry, or afraid. To build up her vocabulary and help determine how new emotion words match with ones she already understands, I put new words on paper plates. Whenever we discover them in the books we read, I write them on the edges of the plate in the proper quarter. If Pamela falls back on the same old words during a narration, I pull out the plate to suggest alternatives. The picture is a bit blurry, but you get the idea. Words for happy include cheerful, giddy, and joyful; sad: gloomy, depressed, mournful; angry: irate, wrathful, furious; and afraid: frightened, terrified, scared.She has the same issue with people words and verbs. If asked, “Who does __________ see?” her response was almost always, “________ sees people.” Whenever we run into new kinds of people in books, I write them on our people plate. The people plate helps her pick words that are more appropriate if all that pops in her head is people. The image is a tad blurry, but along the rim are words like parents, children, farmers, sailors, knights, teachers, doctors, etc.

We are broadening her use of verbs too. If asked, “What can __________ do?” she usually says, “_________ can go.” I recently started a new subject-verb plate where I document what verbs are often associated with what nouns. She already knows these associations, but needs hints about more specific words than go.

2 comments:

diane said...

Thank you for the tip! Such a wonderful idea!! I get stuck myself. Love your pictures. Sincerely, Diane

Ronda said...

I like the people plate. One concept we are working on classifying is classifying nouns so this tool is going to work for us in that way. I am also going to really work to fit the association method into our home program. Thanks, Ronda