Planning push-in language lessons for the classroom environment can be scary! And stressful. You are worried about failing with behavior management and having the time to plan lessons.
If you use these activity ideas for your lesson planning, your stress will go down because you will have a plan. And, your kids will be engaged, so unwanted behaviors will occur lesson.
Where I Currently Do Push-In Language Support
I have found the most success with doing push-in therapy in the Special Day Classroom setting. I would love to do more push-in for the general education classroom. A big roadblock for me with pushing into the general education classroom is that many of the students are in different classrooms. So, if I need to see three students at a certain time, I can’t push-in to all their classrooms at that time. And, many times, I didn’t have extra time slots to push-in to three classrooms.
If you are wanting to start pushing into the classroom, I recommend trying the Special Day Classroom!
This is how I set up my push-in lesson plans. I do a whole class activity for about 15-20 minutes. Then, I break the students into three small groups. I run a group, the teacher and aid each run a group. This allows us to provide small group instructions. Typically, I run the language group that is more complex or needs to adapt materials for many goals. Below, I am going to share Thanksgiving push-in lessons you can do in the classroom.
Even if you don’t currently use a push-in language model, you can still use these activities in small group sessions.
Thanksgiving Push-In Language Activities
First, you can pick any Thanksgiving themed book to read to the class. I read Twas’ The Night Before Thanksgiving to the class.
I also love the book Turkey Trouble, Bear Says Thanks, There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Turkey or 10 Fat Turkeys. As I read the book, I emphasized verbs, key vocabulary and asked the students wh-questions.
After I read the book, as a whole class we did a fabulous brain break dance to Gobble, Gobble, Turkey Wobble. This activity was a way to get the kids out of their chairs and following the words of the song. If you have students working on social pragmatics, you can have them participate working on keeping his/her body in the group.
Thanksgiving Simon Says Verb Actions
As a whole class, we played a mean game of Simon Says Thanksgiving verb actions. I modified the rules to just have one person telling everyone what action to do. We didn’t play the “Simon didn’t say part”. We acted out the following verb actions:
- carving the turkey
- cutting the green beans
- stuffing the turkey
- spraying whip cream
- eating pumpkin pie
- mashing the potatoes
- stirring the pie batter
- cutting the apples for the pie
- pouring the gravy
- spreading the butter on the bread
- scooping the mashed potatoes
- setting the table
Thanksgiving Push-In Language Activities at Small Group Stations
After we do the 20-minute whole class lesson, I break the students into smaller groups. The teacher, instructional aid, and I each run a different station. I usually take the activity that I know how to adapt across all my student’s goals. At my station, this is where I try to take some data on the student’s performance.
For my station, we watched this super fun Thanksgiving-themed Simon’s cat video. If you have not heard of these videos, you need to start using them! Check out my blog post here for ways to adapt these free YouTube videos for your younger and older students.
I used this video to target a lot of verbs and story sequencing. The first time we watched it, I modeled a variety of verbs with the present progressive verb tense.
I have been reading some research that says when we target a variety of verbs with a specific morpheme marker, we can help increase generalization.
Owen Van Horne, A. J., Curran, M., Larson, C., & Fey, M. E. (2018). Effects of a Complexity-Based Approach on Generalization of Past Tense –ed and Related Morphemes. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 49(3S), 681–693.
During this lesson, I used conversational recasting during the video with my students. If the student said, “cat take”, I would recast the student’s production with “The cat is taking the food.” With conversational recasting, you take the student’s utterance and model it for them with the correct grammar form.
Here are the verbs we used during this activity: />
Small Group Station #2
For the second station, students practiced learning Thanksgiving-themed verbs playing a lively game of memory using magnetic wands. I just put paperclips on the cards and kids got to pick cards using my magnetic wand. Students simultaneously worked on turn taking and following the social rules for a game.
We used the verb cards from my Thanksgiving grammar and vocabulary activities. The instructional aid ran that station.
Small Group Station #3
For the last station, I had the classroom teacher do some structured drill practice of third-person singular and work on identifying verbs.
After they finished with the drill activity, the kids got to play with my Can You Find It? Fall sensory bin. If you like using sensory bins and need some fall themed bins, check out this post HERE.
What Activities Do You Plan For Your PUSH-IN Lessons?
I would love to know what activities you plan for your push-in lessons. Share an idea in the comments or leave a comment with a question!