1. Teacher Guess Who:
Make 3 color copies of the staff pictures in your yearbook. Cut out one set to be a deck. Use the other two copies to be game boards as you play “School Guess Who” with the teachers as the characters. (Just cover up the pics with coins, chips, or small paper as you go). This works well for targeting descriptive language.
2. Would You Rather….
Working on the structured speech level for articulation? Play “Would you Rather…” Give 2 choices of hypothetical situations and ask the kids “Would you rather A or B?” Tally how many answers the students have in common. (You can have them do this by dropping a chip in a cup every time the agree with the student answering the question and counting them at the end). Students enjoy this game and you can get do it online for free by using the website: yourather.com (Just read each question yourself first to make sure it’s appropriate). You can also have students at the reading level read the question choices.
3. Electronic Catch Phrase
This game is a favorite of mine because it is fun for students and adults. I use this game to illustrate the concepts of giving clues for an inference, defining a word with categories and attributes, providing a distractor (the game beeps) for fluency students, and working on structured speech for articulation students.
4. Apples to Apples
This language game is a classic that helps target adjectives, comparing and contrasting, and visualization.
This multiplayer game allows you to reward each student in your small group with a quick turn removing and replacing a block from the Jenga tower. This is my go to for mult-student articulation therapy.
6. Model Me Kids
Use the “Model Me Kids” DVDs to target social skills. This video modeling series features middle school in High School students in a few of the DVDs (including “Conversation Tips and Tricks”). My students respond well to seeing kids their age talk about what to do and what not to do in social situations that they will face.
7. Show Off
This board game is among my students favorite speech therapy activities. Like the old game “concentration,” players must think of a word that starts with each letter of the alphabet for a given category. This board game adds the feature of being able to steal someone else’s turn if they are taking to long. The game is perfect for targeting categorization, but I have also adapted it to target word-final articulation; for each letter have the students come up with a word that starts with the letters of the alphabet, but end with their target sound. For example if your student is working on the word-final “er” sound, responses could include “Archer, Barber, Caterer, Doctor, Easter, Foster, etc.”
8. 20 Questions
Have each of the students in your group think of/write down the name of an object. Then, allow the students to take turns asking each other a series of 20 yes/no questions until they can guess the object. This is a good game for structured speech practice and descriptive language skills.
The kids love this game! I only use it with groups of 2 or kids that I see one-on-one, though. I even found a way to spice it up by adding speech and language therapy targets to the back as a snap-on game board. Check it out here!
10. Classic pencil & paper games
Hangman, Dots, and Tic-Tac-Toe are always available with just a pencil and paper or even whiteboard and dry erase marker. I often default to these old standbys to spice up an articulation session or language activity.
Most of the games I love can either be done on scratch paper, found for free on the internet, or acquired cheaply at a garage sale or thrift store 😉