Goodwill Community Foundation (GCF) Learn is a wonderful website that provides over 750 FREE lesson plans and over 250 FREE videos.
Everyday Life is one of the areas on this website that is my favorite because it provides a lot of functional activities.
ATM, Bake, Counting Change, Count Pills, Deposit Money, Grocery List, Prescription, Mixing, Microwave, and many other everyday life skills. All of the lessons are interactive and functional allowing students and clients to engage in these real life tasks.
I think there are a lot of great activities to utilize on this website and they can be incorporated into therapy sessions with children and adults. Each activity can be adapted for each client, but I think this website is a really great resource.
I love seeing each of my students' faces light up when they are provided with positive reinforcement. Their smiles are priceless and it really makes them try even harder. Think back to parents, teachers, mentors and other individuals in our lives that made us smile on those bad days through encouraging words or even a simple "Wow, you did it!". Therefore, I think it is so important for us to continue to incorporate positive reinforcement into our sessions and life in general. If we can find something positive to say first and then incorporate what we want our student and/or client to work on next time, then I think each individual is more receptive to what the clinician says. Positive reinforcement can be modified for all ages. Below are some of the themes that I have used throughout some of my sessions:
Website: http://www.speechlanguage-resources.com/ David Newman is the founder of Speech Language Resources, after reading his About me page and viewing all of the resources that he provides on the website, it is evident how passionate David is about the field of Speech Language Pathology. Future SLPs may relate and enjoy reading David’s experience as a Speech Language Pathology student.
The focus of Speech Language Resources is language and literacy skills in school age students. The website provides different approaches to utilize in therapy sessions with students in a fun and creative way. The user is provided with FREE language therapy activities as well as a step by step guide which makes it easy to navigate and find information. To get updates regarding techniques, monthly language intervention tips and other beneficial information, subscribe to the Language Dispatch newsletter. Also when you sign up for the newsletter you receive a free Idioms eBook, On Cloud Nine.
Some of the sections of the website that I wanted to highlight include the following:-Book Selections (Picture Books, 1st Grade, 3rd Grade, 6th Grade, Speech Pathology) -Information for Teachers and Speech Pathologists (Teacher Tips, Board Games, Grammar, Links, Classroom Language)-Social Language (Autism, Asperger's Syndrome, Figurative Language, Pragmatic Language)The above are a few resources that are on Speech Language Resources, but the website has many more sections with lots of great resources. Special Thanks to David Newman for creating such a great resource!
The sport of gymnastics can provide children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) access to a differentiated approach, which potentially can create a model program to meet each child’s individual needs in a unique and effective manner. Gymnastics is a sport that provides an enriching environment filled with opportunities for sharpening the mind by stimulating the brain, fostering social skills, and strengthening gross and fine motor skills...View the rest of this article on ASHAsphere
I have come across a lot of great resources lately, and I am excited to share with you all a new resource that provides over 3000 FREE THERAPY IDEAS in one location...Find out more about this FREE resource...http://bit.ly/pAiH0s
I saw this poem and thought it was fitting since April is Autism Awareness month. I learn something new everyday from all of the children on my caseload with Autism. There is never a dull moment, each child allows me to think outside the box to brainstorm new therapy approaches that will in some way help to advance their skills. Joy is the best word to describe what each one of them adds to my world!
I Am The Child
I am the child who cannot talk. You often pity me, I see it in your eyes.
You wonder how much I am aware of. I see that as well. I am aware of
much … whether you are happy or sad or fearful, patient or impatient,
full of love and desire, or if you are just doing your duty by me. I marvel
at your frustration, knowing mine to be far greater, for I cannot express
myself or my needs as you do.
You cannot conceive my isolation, so complete it is at times. I do not gift
you with clever conversation, cute remarks to be laughed over and repeated.
I do not give you answers to your everyday questions, responses over my well
being, sharing my needs, or comments about the world about me. I do not give
you rewards as defined by the world’s standards.. great strides in development
that you can credit yourself; I do not give you understanding as you know it.
What I give you is so much more valuable… I give you instead opportunities.
Opportunities to discover the depth of your character, not mine; the depth of
your love, your commitment, your patience, your abilities; the opportunity to
explore your spirit more deeply than you imagined possible. I drive you
further than you would ever go on your own, working harder, seeking answers
to your many questions with no answers. I am the child who cannot talk.
I am the child who cannot walk. The world seems to pass me by. You see the
longing in my eyes to get out of this chair, to run and play like other
children. There is much you take for granted. I want the toys on the shelf,
I need to go to the bathroom, oh I’ve dropped my fork again. I am dependant
on you in these ways. My gift to you is to make you more aware of your great
fortune, your healthy back and legs, your ability to do for yourself.
Sometimes people appear not to notice me; I always notice them. I feel not
so much envy as desire, desire to stand upright, to put one foot in front of
the other, to be independent. I give you awareness. I am the child who
I am the child who is mentally impaired. I don’t learn easily, if you judge me
by the world’s measuring stick, what I do know is infinite joy in simple
things. I am not burdened as you are with the strifes and conflicts of a more
complicated life. My gift to you is to grant you the freedom to enjoy things
as a child, to teach you how much your arms around me mean, to give you
love. I give you the gift of simplicity. I am the child who is mentally
I am the disabled child. I am your teacher. If you allow me, I will teach you
what is really important in life. I will give you and teach you unconditional
love. I gift you with my innocent trust, my dependency upon you. I teach you
about how precious this life is and about not taking things for granted. I
teach you about forgetting your own needs and desires and dreams. I teach
you giving. Most of all I teach you hope and faith. I am the disabled child.
“Play is important throughout life but in childhood, it is nature's unparalleled way of teaching a child about body, mind, and spirit.” ~Tahirih Bushey~ Play is a valuable element of a child’s life, it involves a different type of creative learning which is distant from the academic environment of school. Autism Games is an incredible website because it provides ideas and visuals for parents/caregivers of ways to promote and develop play skills by taking the child into a positive, fun, and imaginative world where anything is possible. Autism Games serves as a resource of games that young children with Autism Spectrum Disorders can play, video models of games that parents/caregivers can view and learn from, tips and strategies for making games more educational and fun and so much more! The blog serves as a companion to Autism Games at autismgames.org where you will find more games and parent tips. Some important posts that are recommended to read prior to choosing a game on autismgames.org are the following posts below:► Why Games? is a discussion about why playing with your child is important and how structured games can make your play times more successful.► Creating Common Ground is a discussion of how to get started with children who are not yet talking and often move away, ignore you, or protest when you try to play.► Not Too Easy, Not Too Hard is a discussion about how to find games that are at the right level of difficulty for your child. Some of the sections that you will find as you explore the website, Autism Games are listed below:► Blog: Lots of great information and it serves as a companion for Autism Games► Game Collections: The core of this site where you can explore, learn about and see demonstrations of different kinds of social play for children with Autism. All of the games included on this website have been pre-tested. The games are organized by difficulty (Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced) and the collections are arranged so that you can see how similar games can be modified according to level of play. ► Parent Tips: Included in this section is an assortment of articles on strategies, concepts, and even toys or tools that Tahirih frequently tells parents about in her professional work as a Speech Language Pathologist. ► Learning Objectives: The list on this page represents the kinds of goals and objectives that were in mind when the games were initially played in a clinic setting.► Video Index: This allows you to quickly find a video model of a game that you want to show your child and/or so you can review the game demonstrated before you start to play the game. Tahirih stated that, “The blog and the companion web site, Autism Games are dedicated to inspiring you, fellow lover of a child with autism, to play in a thousand different ways and for a thousand different reasons with your child.” Special thanks to Tahirih for providing innovative games for play for children with Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Website: http://www.do2learn.com: Do2Learn
I. Background Information: For over ten years Do2Learn has, through funding from numerous sources including the National Institutes of Health, used technology and the web to supply special learning resources for individuals with disabilities and the professionals and caregivers who serve them. They have collaborated with teachers, parents, and clinicians to develop serious games and learning material targeting specific deficits of individuals with neurological disorders including autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, fetal alcohol effects, OCD, attention disorders, learning and communication disorders and others. The deficits that they address include risky and disruptive behavior as well as lack of appropriate social, communication and daily living skills.
II. Overview of the Website:
The Internet offers a lot of great resources for educators, parents, caregivers, clinicians, students, and any individual looking to find more information regarding specific topics. However, sometimes it is hard to find time to find fabulous websites like Do2Learn. This website is filled with innovative activities, great advice to families, versatile lessons, and so much more to individuals with disabilities, and the professionals and caregivers that serve them. Do2Learn provides a one of a kind, one stop learning experience that creates an environment where the individual does not have to look any further, because it targets so many audiences and highlights a variety of topics. The end result is more time is allotted to learning instead of spending time trying to search multiple websites for different topics.
III. Topics Covered on the Website:
Do2Learn’s website is easiest to navigate with the use of the site map, which has all of the topics covered on the website in a format that is organized and easy to use. Since this site has so much great information, I will highlight on a few areas and then the rest is left for you to explore and have fun.
► Disabilities: Advice (Advice to different questions), Books (Covering a variety of different topics), Diagnosis (Different diagnosis including the definition, diagnosis/characteristics, characteristics and strategies) Family Advocacy (Legal Rights, Handout & Autism Card, Abbreviations), Teacher Toolbox.
§ Art Projects (Dot Art, How to Draw, Marble Art, Rubbing Art, String Art, Veggie Art),
§ Card Games (Computation, Sequencing, Number Recognition, Categorizing, Visual Scanning),
§ Fine Motor Skills (Bubble Activity, Fine Motor Recycling, Golf Peg Push In, Macaroni Put In, Wiffle Ball Snatch & Drop)
§ Learn (Clock, Door Signs, Phone Number Helper)
§ Math Helpers (Grid Paper, Numbers, Addition/Subtraction Table, Multiplication Table, Vertical Number Line)
§ Reading & Writing (Alphabet, Alphabet Guide, Read Order, Writing Paper)
§ Shape Recognition (Activity Sheets, Shape Bingo, Shape Book, Shape Matching, Shape People, Shape Tracing)
§ Social Emotional Skills (Classroom Activities, Worksheets)
§ Sorting & Matching (Baby Food Jars, Clothes Pin Colors, Color Matching)
► Songs & Games: For all of the songs and games listed below it is organized
§ Songs: Bus Safety, Mall Safety, Parts of Me, Street Safety, Fire Safety. All of the songs have an animated video that is colorful and engaging. Some of the songs have accompanying activities and downloadable pictures that correspond to each verse.
§ Games: Color/Number Games (How Many?, What Color?, Math Mahjong), Emotion Games (Facial Expressions, Feelings Game), Sequence Game (Time Sequence Game), and Word Games (Create a Room, Synonyms & Antonyms, Word Pairs, What’s Different?). All of the games have colorful graphics, great visuals, and a lot of positive reinforcement.
§ Sounds Sing-A-Long: Videos that add a new creative twist to assist children with pronnounciation difficulties with consonants and/or vowels.
► Get Organized: The categories that are included under this section include the following:
§ Classroom: different ways to build a classroom, behavior management, games and activities, educational resources.
§ Daily Organizers: various organization charts
§ Emotions Color Wheel (one of my favorites): this wheel helps individuals to visually group feelings and to learn more about each feeling you can click on the word.
§ Teacher Toolbox: collection of classroom management techniques, learning strategies and educational resources.
§ Set up: activity choice board, communication folder, home teaching kit, leisure games, schoolwork communication folder, weekend schedules, work system.
§ Social Skills Toolbox: improving communication skills, improving social behavior, graphic organizers and tools, social skills for younger kids.
► Picture Cards: Ready to use picture cards (i.e. safety, home & school, social) for communication. If you do not see the category that you are looking for then feel free to print your own on blank image grids. An overview is provided regarding the different ways you can use the picture cards and various ways of implementing them in daily activities.
► Products: I found that the products offered on the website were reasonably priced. Some of the categories of the products that are offered on Do2Learn include: learning (i.e. color bingo, site words, prepositions), books (i.e. Fine Motor Skills, Feelings Journal, Handbook for New Teachers), picture cards (i.e. food, therapy, doctors), make a schedule subscription, and software (i.e. name that object, letter match, fantastic faces).
Do2Learn provides many opportunities for growth in learning, new ideas, and exploration of a variety of free resources. This all-inclusive website provides a community for individuals ready and willing to explore new ways to learn. Thank you to the creators of Do2Learn for investing the time in creating a website full of remarkable resources!
Behavior Doctor is a website with great strategies/techniques for positive behavior intervention with children. Some of the sections on this website include: Certificates: downloadable certificates to award children for positive behavior and to use for encouragement and motivation. Presentations: over 40 different downloadable presentations on topics ranging from: “Classroom Intervention”, “Community Involvement”, “Transitions”, “Positive Behavior Supports for Parents” and many more. Books: over 10 different downloadable books on topics ranging from: “Autism,” “ADHD,” “IEP for Educators,” “The Media and Disabilities,” and many more.Forms and Tools: different forms to increase positive behavior The other sections on this website are Behavior Examples, Training, and there is a Blog Talk Radio. There are so many resources to use on this site and they are all FREE! Special Thanks to the Creator of this website, Dr. Laura Riffel and all of the contributors to help make this website such a great resource!
This site allows the user to create different facial expressions (i.e. angry, sad, interested). The client and clinician can discuss the meaning of each emotion or facial expression created and then act it out themselves.
This particular story is about saying "hi." It teaches the child that it is courteous to speak and say "hi" to people, to whom they can say "hi" to, how many times a day they can say "hi," and how happy it makes other people feel when they say "hi" to them. This also speaks to pragmatic skills, which is the social use of language. Children have to know how and when to use certain communication skills and in what settings.
Saying Excuse Me
This story is short and simple, explaining an example of a situation when the child may use the term "excuse me." _________________________________________________________________
This is a program that provides pictures (visuals) of different behavior situations. Words are provided under the pictures to form a complete sentence that refers to the pictures. This particular program speaks to the semantic as well as the syntactic components of language. It would be a good assessment tool to increase the child's vocabulary as well as sentence structure (i.e., simple, complex).
Strategies for Teaching Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders
This article provides information and ideas that can be used in a clinical setting or strategies for teachers in a classroom setting when teaching indiviudals with Autism Spectrum Disorders. It outlines different techniques and strategies that are beneficial and the steps to implement those techniques.
Let me know what activities you incorporate in your lesson plans for individuals with an Autism Spectrum Disorder.