Today I want to share how to use Bubble Talk in speech therapy with your upper elementary and middle school students. When I saw this game at Target, I had to have it. I think you will want it too! The format of the game is similar to Apples to Apples. You place a photo card in the middle of the table and each player finds a “talk caption” that they think would best represent the people or animals in the photo and puts it face down in a pile.
The judge shuffles the cards and then reads the talk bubbles out loud for the group. Next, the judge picks the “talk bubble” that they think goes best with the photo and that person gets a point. This ends the round and then you get a new photo. Everyone can be the judge, but I was the judge in the speech room to avoid too much conflict.
There are pictures on both sides of the cards, so there are plenty of cards to make this game last for a while.
Here is how I use this game in therapy:
- Each round is really quick, so it is a great reinforcer for fluency and articulation goals in between production practice.
- I used my visual attribute strip and had my vocabulary students describe something in the photo. Above is a picture of a baby in a drawer. The student had to describe the dresser by attributes.
- My higher functioning social thinkers really liked this game and I got a lot of spontaneous eye contact, comments and initiation without prompting or asking. This is also a great way to incorporate humor.
- Most of these photos require people to use context clues to determine what is happening. These photos are great for working making smart guesses, inferencing and predictions.
- Use these photos to have students create sentences using conjunctions, noun-verb agreement, and verb tense.
- Let the students bring in photos from home to use with the game. Before using the picture, the student has to retell who, what, where, when, and why about the photo. This targets personal narration and language organization.
- Talking about what is expected vs. unexpected about the photo and what the person may be feeling or thinking can be incorporated. There is a photo of a man dressed as “super man” trimming the hedges in his yard. We talked about how this might make people have uncomfortable thoughts about us.
- You could also target think vs. say as well as let the kids make their own talk bubble cards for fun.
Things to consider with this game:
- There are two giant stacks of talking bubble cards, which is awesome, but you need to filter through the cards to make sure they are school appropriate. I found a card “That’s what she said”. I don’t want any uncomfortable moments with my middle school boys (enough said).
- I would also filter through the photos to make sure they would be appropriate. Most are, but you just never know.
- This game is best used with kids who are exhibiting higher social thinking skills and cognition. There are a lot of underlying skills required to understand and enjoy this game. My 4th-5th general ed students loved it as well as my middle school students, so don’t be afraid to try this with upper elementary students.
You can also snag this game on amazon (amazon affiliate link provided). Since I have such awesome followers, I wanted to give this game away for FREE to one lucky person. Enter below!