When implementing a theme-based approach, you want to ensure your speech therapy materials and activities include the theme’s vocabulary.
That’s why today, in this blog post, I will share 5 Fall language activities you can do that incorporate fall-themed vocabulary words and concepts.
Mixed Group Fall Language Therapy Activity
Sequencing with fall activities is a great way to work on various language goals.
You can cover grammar, vocabulary, comprehension, description, and more! This research article found that when therapy focused on a broad range of language skills, students reading comprehension improved.
Working on sequencing the steps for raking leaves, carving a pumpkin, making an apple pie, or a squirrel collecting acorns for the winter, you can work on lots of different language concepts.
You can even show your students YouTube videos with the process for these fall activities. And, if you want digital Boom Cards to work on fall sequencing, check out these different fall-themed sets in my TPT store.
Lervåg, A. , Hulme, C. and Melby‐Lervåg, M. (2017). Unpicking the developmental relationship between oral language skills and reading comprehension: It’s simple, but complex. Child Development. Advance online publication. doi:10.1111/cdev.12861
Work on Comparing and Contrasting with Fall Vocabulary
If you ask classroom teachers what skills they are working on in language arts, one skill that they often share they are teaching is comparison.
Teaching your students how to feature match to find similarities and differences will help them analyze characters from stories and similar items.
You can work on the compare/contrast skill using fall-themed vocabulary. Check out the word lists at Words To Use for some ideas. If you want to avoid thinking of similar items, grab these compare/contrast cards for fall in my TPT store.
Want a free graphic organizer for comparing and contrasting? Grab this one in my store!
Use Fall Photos to Build Inferencing Skills
You can cover many language goals using real photos from a theme, so why not use fall-related images to target inferencing skills?
One of the main benefits of a theme-based approach is that while you are working on the theme’s concepts, you can build background knowledge simultaneously.
While asking your student’s inferencing questions, you can also help build schema around the fall season. To find fall-themed photos, you can use Pixabay, Google Photos (don’t post this on the internet because you could be violating copyright), or any free, open-source photo site. But, if you want to save time, you can use the fall inferencing photos ready to go with questions and thought bubbles.
Teach Comprehension With Short Stories
Often we have students on our caseloads with various language needs who struggle with comprehension because vocabulary and syntax are significant areas of need. On top of that, retaining all the components of a story can be difficult if the text is long.
So, I like having short stories to help break down the wh-questions, help build vocabulary, and work on retelling while also targeting syntax.
To help me follow a theme-based approach, I have made fall-themed short stories with fall concepts embedded in the story.
You can find my scaffolded fall short stories in my Themed Therapy SLP membership and the fall sequencing short stories. If you are still deciding whether to try out the membership, I also have a set of fall-scaffolded short stories in my TPT store.
Build Vocabulary with Fall Sensory Bins
Making a fall-themed sensory bin can be a great way to reinforce vocabulary while keeping your students engaged during the session.
A typical therapy plan for me is using a fall-themed book and pairing it with a sensory bin.
You can provide direct teaching with the book and allow the child to explore and use the fall sensory bin to target goals. If you need a fall-themed sensory bin companion, I have this set in my store!
Plus, I have sensory bin cheat sheets in the Themed Therapy SLP membership. For more fall-themed sensory bin ideas, check out this post.
What Fall Language Activities Do You Plan With Your Students?
Do you have any fall language activities that are a big hit with your students? How do you plan for your language goals using a fall theme? Share any books, websites, or resources you use for your speech therapy sessions in the comments. For more fall-themed therapy ideas, check out these blog posts.