During the spring months, I love using specific themes to cover speech and language goals. Bugs, farm life, and spring vocabulary are part of my March and April themes. I also love incorporating chickens into my small group and push-in therapy because many kindergarten teachers are talking about newborn animals. Some teachers even raise eggs to hatch into baby chicks! If you are in search of chicken speech therapy activities for your K-2 students, you came to the right blog post.
Small and Whole Class Lesson Support
For my Special Day Classrooms, I do some form of whole class or co-teaching service delivery model. When I plan lessons for my whole class lessons, I definitely re-use those materials for my small group instruction as well. Today, I will be talking about how to implement the chicken speech therapy activities in a push-in format. But, if you don’t currently do a push-in model, you can still use these ideas in small groups. That’s the beauty of planning effective whole class lessons, because they work for small groups too (lesson planning made easy). If you are looking for information about how I set up my push-in lessons, check out this blog post HERE.
How to Structure Your Push-In Lesson
I usually plan a 15-20-minute lesson that I do with the whole class. During that time, I ask that the teacher and aides help support the behavior in the class. One day, I hope to train some of the staff to take data while I teach. #slpgoals
We start the lesson introducing the theme and reviewing behavioral expectations. Then, the teachers and myself run three different stations that last for 10 minutes each.
Behavior Management Tips for Work Stations
When I run push-in lessons, I try to follow the classroom rules and expectations. I also add in visual supports to help my students navigate what they should be doing during each station. I visually break it down into “What my body can do,” “What I do during the activity,” and “How to use my words.”
When it is time to transition to a new station, I set off a timer and use visuals to help remind students when they have to wait/go to the next station. You can read more about teaching behavior expectations HERE.
Chicken Books to Use with Your Speech Therapy Activities
After the stations, I read a book. During this time, I call on students with wh-question goals, emphasize key vocabulary, and try to get my students working on verb concepts to share about what they see in the pictures.
Here are some of my fave chicken books (Amazon affiliate links included for your convenience):
–Big Chickens by Leslie Helakoski
–Interrupting Chickens by David Ezra Stein
–The Chicken Problem by Jennifer Oxley
Whole Class Lesson Ideas for Using Chickens
After I read the book, we do a Google Slide presentation about the theme.
Other activities you can do:
You can do an Anchor chart describing everything about chickens. You can include chickens “can” (i.e. Chickens can run.), “have” (i.e. Chickens have feathers.), chickens “are” (i.e. Chickens are animals.).
We play “Who has the egg?” I print out eggs or baskets and hide the eggs in the students’ hands while everyone has their eyes closed. Then, they open their eyes and students get to initiate a “who” question to a peer or staff member. We play this until all the eggs are found.
I will also put a chicken or an egg on a popsicle stick and work on the basic concept of the week. So, if I choose “above,” I will put the egg above students’ heads and items in the classroom. The students have to say “where” the egg is located.
Station #1 (10 minutes in length): Easter Egg Craft
Use an ice cube tray and put different colored paints in the tray. Attach pom pom balls to clothespins. Students can dip the pom pom balls in the paint to make different designs on the egg. You can work on initiating requests, waiting/sharing, asking friends to pass the paint, and talking about the colors. After the students create their craft, they can talk about what they did first, next, last.
Station #2 (10 minutes in length): Chicken Inferencing
Put the picture stimulus items in plastic eggs. I number the eggs with permanent marker, so I know what items are in which eggs. Use my inferencing cheat sheet to give students clues about “what” is in the egg. You can simultaneously work on taking turns, describing the noun by attributes and the concepts “open/close.”
Station #3 (10 minutes in length): Chicken Crossed the Road
Your students can work on making sentences with correct grammar using these mats. If you have students working on noun-functions or categories, the mats have food, school supplies, and transportation. Sentence frames are included to help your friends have greater success with more complex sentences.
Additional Chicken Speech Therapy Activities
I love using Dinky Doodads to work on skills. They are the perfect size for eggs. Check out how to use trinkets with plastic eggs HERE. You can also make a baby chick sensory bin to work on language skills. Check out the blog post for how to make it HERE (free printables included).
When I use a theme, I try to use the theme for at least two weeks. So, I will interchange some of the activities. At a station, I will bring in toys or games that can work on social skills and functional language.
With this cooperative game Count Your Chickens Game, you can target turn-taking, counting more/less/most, and describing the animals. I love Peaceable Kingdom games because there isn’t a winner or a loser. Perfect for our friends that like to win all of the time!
What Chicken Speech Therapy Activities Do You Plan?
I would love to know how you plan for therapy! If you have some fun chicken activities, share in the comments or tag me at @thedabblingspeechie.
What I love about planning my push-in lesson is that I can re-use the activities in my small group instruction. It feels so nice to have effective therapy plans that I can use across many groups.