Monday, April 23, 2012

Games To Use With Middle/High School

Thank you to all that voted in the last poll.  It was interesting to find out what age groups you work with.  As expected, the elementary grades were the largest group.  But I was impressed to find out that a significant amount work with the higher grades. 

Although I do not work with that age group now, I have worked with them in the past.  It is a very difficult group to work with.  Curriculum expectations are getting more intense, self awareness kicks in, and planning can be a nightmare!!  I know for me, keeping my students motivated was the most difficult part.  They might hate school at this point because it is extremely difficult for them, they may be embarrassed about coming to speech therapy, and/or they might be missing fun classes to come to speech.  I felt that it was important the first month of school to do numerous activities to  help them understand why they are there, benefits of working hard, and get an idea of motivators. 

I was fortunate enough to have a Smart Board at that time.  I used numerous games on Quia and other websites as motivators.  I also created TONS of PowerPoint games to address the different grammar, vocabulary, and comprehension goals.

I was surprised to learn that my students truly enjoyed when I took out a game at the end of the session to reward them.  I did research to find the most appropriate games for this age group that also addressed their speech and language goals.  In no particular order, here are a bunch that I used and felt was successful with this age group.

1. 20 Questions Board Game:  A great way to work on inferencing, questioning, and turn-taking.  The pop culture questions are a great motivator.
2. Apples to Apples: such a fun way to work on parts of speech and expanding vocabulary! 
3. Balderdash:  This game is a great one for high schoolers!  It helps build vocabulary, teaches abbreviations/mnemonic devices, and more!

  4. Jenga: An easy game to use with any concept!
5. Scattergories: A fun way to work on categories!  I usually modify the game for the group by combining cards, changing what they say to make them more appropriate, etc.
 
  6. Stare Junior:  This game is GREAT for upper elementary into high school to work on improving memory and teaching the visualization strategy.  The Junior version has more entertaining pictures for students.
7. Taboo Kids: This game is just a fun way to improve vocabulary through describing and guessing.  It makes students truly think about the words on the cards since they cannot use the obvious answers aloud.  The Kids version has less "taboo" words which makes it a little easier.
8. Would You Rather?: This is a fun game to work on problem solving and supporting your responses.  My one request, just screen all cards before playing.  Not every card is appropriate!
9. Tip of the Tongue: This is a fun trivia game with a timer.  It helps students think on the spot.  This game is also great for working on stressful environments.  The container holds the cards which is great for traveling SLPs!  Just don't get scared when you hear the timer go off in your therapy bag!
10. TriBond:  "What do these 3 have in common?"  A fun way of working on categorization and association with pop culture.  I recommend this game with older and higher functioning students!!

I hope you enjoyed the list!  These games helped working with the older population as motivators.  Have I forgotten any?! Feel free to comment or send me a message!  I would love to hear!

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2 comments:

  1. On of my all time games that is no longer made sadly is called Moods. It is fabulous for my kiddies with autism! I also play Last Word. They love them.

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  2. GREAT ideas - I am going to use them for my adult TBI patients. Thank you, I needed this exact kind of inspiration!

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