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Plant Life Cycle Activities for Language Therapy

Plant Life Cycle Activities for Language Therapy

During the spring and summer months an easy theme you can use to cover goals for your younger and older students is the plant life cycle.

When I was working with K-8 students, I would try and think of themes or activities that could be adapted for both age groups because it made easier for me to plan and not feel like my brain was constantly shifting gears when it came to teaching content.

Today, I am going to share resources and activities you can do to teach language using the plant life cycle. 

Planting Sensory Bin for Younger Students

Plant life cycle can be taught using a flower garden sensory bin in speech therapy

Our younger students learn best from exploring and what better way to work on a plant life cycle then with a planting sensory bin.

All you need is a sensory bin filler (i.e., black beans, or real dirt), fake flowers from the Dollar Store or flower Toobs, a shovel, mini watering can, and mini pots for planting the flowers. If you need more spring sensory bin ideas, you can check out this blog HERE.

For SLPs that LOVE sensory bins and enjoy doing a flower theme, you can use this flower sensory bin companion to cover all your goals during play therapy. 

 

Books that Teach the Plant Life Cycle

Another great way to discuss the plant life cycle is through books. This can be a great resource to help work on wh-questions, describing, and building vocabulary in the context of the book. Here are some book recommendations that would help you teach the plant life cycle (Amazon Affiliate links include):

The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle

Plant the Tiny Seed by Greenwillow Books

From Seed to Plant by Gail Gibbons

The Amazing Life Cycle of Plants by Kay Barnham 

Videos to Teach Plant Life Cycle’s and Vocabulary

There are a lot of great videos that walk through the plant life cycle for children. What can be great about using videos is that it can visually show students the process. When kids can see it in a video, they will be more likely to stay engaged.

Scishowkids has a great video for discussing the parts of a flower, which has some great tier II vocabulary words to work on such as support, stiff, study, separate, nutrients, collect, healthy, or spread.

You can also have students work on explaining the process for how a seed becomes a plant. Particularly, you can give your students transition words to use to help connect their ideas while explaining the plant life cycle. 

Here are a couple of songs to use with younger students to explain the plant life cycle. If you search “plant life cycle songs” on YouTube, you will find more options!

Plant Life Cycle YouTube Videos to use with older students in speech therapy.

Even More YouTube Videos for Discussing the Plant Life Cycle

Fun Science Demos on YouTube has some good videos that visually show where you can find seeds on a plant. I don’t know about you, but I love watching videos with real people using real-life examples. It helps me to understand the content a lot more thoroughly. You can use these videos to discuss main idea and details as well as answering wh-questions. You could also practice using conjunctions and transition words while summarizing the video. 

YouTube Videos About Plants for Older Students

Plant life cycle activities and resources to help teach language skills in speech therapy

Ted-Ed has a lot of great videos that discuss cool science about how plants grow. These videos more friendly for the older student and you won’t get accused for bringing in kiddie materials. In addition, using plant videos aligns with the science standards for life sciences. Here are a couple of videos I thought middle schoolers would like.

Curriculum to Teach Plant Life Cycle in Language Therapy

Have you ever heard of Mystery Science? It has easy to follow videos that answer a question about a science mystery. Often times, the videos also come with a hands on science experiment. What I love the most about Mystery Science is that it even has videos for each of the steps for completing the project, so it helps our students with receptive language challenges follow directions easier. This could be a great resource for using in your small groups to work on tier II vocabulary, syntax, wh-questions, working together in a group, and summarizing. Furthermore, this could be your next collaborative co-teaching activity for a general education classroom. I am sure you could offer to help with a science lesson in your student’s class and co-teach with the student’s teacher. If you are wondering how to co-teach, here is a blog post breaking down collaborative services.

Mystery Science has two great plant series that can last you up to 2 months of therapy. There is the Power of Flowers series that has four lessons and Plant Adaptations that includes five lessons.

Plant Life Cycle Craft Ideas

Use a fun craft to teach the plant life cycle to help students stay engaged while they learn.

Students really do love making crafts. It can be a great way for them to process the information you are sharing with them. When I do choose to do a craft, I want it to be functional for their goals and the concepts that we are doing. You could do this plant life cycle unit for 2-3 weeks and on the last week, allow your students to craft a flower life cycle craft. If you have a lot of mixed groups, there are templates for different sounds and language targets, so everything is working on their goals.

I also saw a fun craft using two paper plates. You can draw the plant life cycle on one plate and then cut a triangle out of the other plate. Attach the two plates with mini brass paper fasteners. Your students can rotate the plate to share the steps of the plant life cycle.

What Activities and Resources Do You Use for Teaching the Plant Life Cycle?

What resources, crafts, books, or activities do you use to teach the plant life cycle? Share in the comments because I am always on the hunt for more relevant resources.

Sound Activities for Kids to Use in Push-In Therapy

Sound Activities for Kids to Use in Push-In Therapy

For the month of March, my special day class teachers are using sound and light as their theme for language arts. We use the Unique Curriculum every month and the month of March has sound activities for kids. Using the Unique Curriculum helps the teacher and I plan push-in lessons because it includes stories and modified activities, so you can easily differentiate for the students academic and communication needs. Today, I wanted to show you how you can create your own sound activities for kids that can be used in small groups and whole-class instruction.

Amazon affiliate links are included in this blog post for your convenience. When you click on a link and purchase an item, I get a small commission without any cost to you. 

Planning for the Sound Speech Therapy Lesson

The Push-In set up for my self contained K-1 and 1-2 classrooms are to teach a whole class lesson using literacy and discussing the theme of the week with visuals and a Google Slide presentation. We do this for about 20 minutes. Then, we break up into small group stations that I and the teachers run for about 10 minutes in length.

This allows the students to engage in different language topics at three different stations, which makes for more meaningful practice. This also helps get your students academic ready meaning they are learning to stay seated in a chair, transition to new activities and practicing the correct voice volume at a station table. For those of you feeling overwhelmed with managing behaviors in small groups and whole class, head to this blog post. It has a lot of helpful tips!

If you need visual supports to help teach behavior expectations and rules, these visuals will help increase positive behaviors with less verbal reminders. 

For more information about how to setup push-in lessons for your students, check out this blog post. If you are wondering about

Here are some great sound activities for kids that you can use in your small group and push-in lessons as a speech therapist. Want to have activities that support your Unique curriculum? Check out this blog post to get sound activities to teach science, vocabulary and descriptive language.

YouTube Videos of Sound Activity for Kids to Use for Whole Class or Small Group Instruction

Here are some great sound activities for kids that you can use in your small group and push-in lessons as a speech therapist. Want to have activities that support your Unique curriculum? Check out this blog post to get sound activities to teach science, vocabulary and descriptive language.

On YouTube, there are two really great videos to work on identifying noises and sounds. You can have your students ‘guess’ what is making the sound. And, after the guess is revealed, you can work on answering ‘Where’ you would hear that sound or ‘Who’ makes that sound. Use visual sentence frames to have students explain who makes the sound such as, “The cow makes a ‘moo’ sound. You can also have students identify if the sound is quiet or loud.

One thing I recommend using is a software called SafeTube. It allows you to copy and paste the YouTube video link and creates a safe link to view the video. This way you aren’t getting inappropriate ads or popups that are not appropriate for students to view.

The animal sounds game is perfect for your younger students.  The “Guess the Sound” YouTube video has a variety of sounds in the environment and would be best for younger and older students. 

Books About Sound to Use for Speech Therapy

You can use a book to introduce the topic of sounds as a whole class or use the book during one of the station rotations. As a whole class, we used the story from the Unique Curriculum. It is great on a SMARTboard because you can tap the page and it will read it out-loud to the students while highlighting each word. If you do not have this N2Y subscription, I listed some books you can use. Check out the Station 3 book too. My students loved it! You can still get it on Amazon even though it appears that Usborne does not sell “Who’s Making That Noise?”

Here are some other books you can use in therapy that talk about sounds:

Sounds All Around by Wendy Pfeffer

Sound: Loud, Soft, High, and Low (Amazing Science) by Natalie Myra Rosinsky

Encyclopedia Britannica Kids – Animal Sound Treasury Book – PI Kids (Play-A-Sound) by Phoenix International Publications

Mr. Brown Can Moo, Can You? By Dr. Seuss

We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen

Here are some great sound activities for kids that you can use in your small group and push-in lessons as a speech therapist. Want to have activities that support your Unique curriculum? Check out this blog post to get sound activities to teach science, vocabulary and descriptive language.

Sound Activity for Station 1 Rotation

 

The special education teacher had these tin canisters from the Dollar Tree and filled them with different items that make noise. Each of the students took a turn shaking one of the containers. They listened to the sound and made a guess about what the sound could be. Your students can also describe the sound as either quiet or loud with this activity. The students were very engaged and excited to find out what was in the containers. You can work on CORE vocabulary for “open”, “more,” “like/don’t like”, “loud” and “quiet.” You can also find them on Amazon HERE.

Here are some great sound activities for kids that you can use in your small group and push-in lessons as a speech therapist. Want to have activities that support your Unique curriculum? Check out this blog post to get sound activities to teach science, vocabulary and descriptive language.
Here are some great sound activities for kids that you can use in your small group and push-in lessons as a speech therapist. Want to have activities that support your Unique curriculum? Check out this blog post to get sound activities to teach science, vocabulary and descriptive language.

Sound Activity for Station 2 Rotation

For another station, you could use one of the ‘Guess the Sound’ YouTube videos and work in a small group. Or, you can do a sound charades game where students take turns imitating the sounds/noises of different items, nature, appliances, and animals. While you are making the sounds, you can cover yes/no questions by asking, “Is this sound quiet?” or “Is this a lion?”

Grab this activity by clicking the pink button. It is a free download to use in your therapy room.

Sound Activity for Station 3 Rotation

 

Grab a good book that talks about sound. I really love the Usborne Lift a Flap Book for “Who’s Making that Noise?” by Jenny Tyler and Philip Hawthorn. I don’t think Usbourne sells this series anymore. But, the kids loved talking about the noises the animals were making. It was perfect for open/close, answering “what”, “where”, and “who” questions as well as teaching the CORE vocabulary of “no/not.” This book has repetitive lines and one of them is “Who’s making that noise? Is it those noisy boys? It’s NOT us.”

Here are some great sound activities for kids that you can use in your small group and push-in lessons as a speech therapist. Want to have activities that support your Unique curriculum? Check out this blog post to get sound activities to teach science, vocabulary and descriptive language.

Grab this free sound charade visual activity with visual sentence starters. I love using visual sentence frames to help my students generate more novel utterances. If you are an elementary SLP and tired of scribbling out sentence frames on post-it notes, then grab my entire visual sentence starters to use with ANY lesson and with a variety of goals.

What Sound Activities for Kids Do You Love to Use?

Working on identifying sounds in your speech sessions can be really engaging because your students use their hearing to navigate the world around them. When we find themes that are relevant to our students’ environment, they tend to have more to say about the topic. The staff and myself noticed a lot more comments and initiation of communication with this theme. What sound activities or materials have you used with your students? Let me know in the comments. 

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