19 Aug Interactive Materials for Teletherapy #3
Interactive materials for use during teletherapy
Here is another installment of interactive materials for use during teletherapy! Previously, I provided resources that I found useful with my Speech/Language Teletherapy students. Some of the materials were in a hard-copy form that you could email to your tele-helper and have him/her print them out for the students to use as positive reinforcers on-site. Others were games I found online and used with students, allowing additional practice time, even more than I had expected, because the students wanted to continue playing the games (“earning a turn”). The trick to using such resources is to not let the student or yourself lose focus of the goal of the teletherapy session.
In case you are not familiar with accessing Google Chrome or the Apps available through it, here is are the steps:
- Open a web browser page using Google Chrome
- In the top, left-hand corner of that web-browser page, you should see this:
- Click on the little patch of colored squares with “Apps” next to it.
- This should take you to a blank page of the browser. It is blank because you most likely do not have/own any Chrome Apps yet. Look in the bottom right-hand corner and you should see this: . Click on it and it will take you to the Google Chrome Store.
- On the left-hand side of the Chrome Web Store page, you should see a listing that looks:
- Once you’ve chosen the options listed in step #5, you can look for specific games by typing in the names in the Chrome Web Store “search” box. Games like: Checkers, Yahtzee, etc.
- If it finds what you asked, click on the result you want, and it should give you an opportunity to add it to your Chrome Apps page.
- Click on the blue box as shown in #7, and you should see:
- You will want to click on the box that says, “Add app,” because it will add that app to your Google Chrome Apps page (that page shouldn’t be empty any longer).
- Now go back to your Chrome browser page and click on the small colored boxes as mentioned in step #2, and you should see the app you chose sitting on that page.
a. So when you want to use that game/page, you just click on the App icon (in step #2) and click on the icon representing the game.
- If you decide you do not want an app that is located on the App page, just right click on the icon for that app, and it will provide a short list of options, one of which is “Remove.”
a. Click on the “Remove…” and it will ask you once more if you want to delete the app, and you choose, “Remove.”
Play around with the different apps and games you will find in the list to the right of the sidebar shown in step #5. Have fun checking out all of the options!
Four in a row
Since a previous blog posting, I located a “Connect Four” type of game available through Google Chrome (i.e., Google Play app). It is called, “Four In A Row.” At first it looked as though only 1 person could play against the computer which works if you only are working with one student. I since discovered that if you click on the die located in the upper right-hand corner, it opens a “New Game” screen, and within it, a box saying, “Opponent.” Click on the down-facing little, black triangle; and choose, “human versus human.” You can also choose the level of difficulty within this box as well. This type of game lends itself to working on: turn-taking, problem-solving, and learning to pre-plan moves. Therapy idea: discuss the meaning of the word, “strategy,” since it is the focus of the game.
Angry Birds Rio
I was also able to locate the “Angry Birds Rio” game to use as an app/link on my Google Chrome App screen. I will provide you with the link for the online game, but keep in mind, you may want to enlarge your screen so as to block the comments under the game screen from the students’ view. I haven’t run across any inappropriate comments, but one never knows what is going to show up. Better to be safe than sorry. Here’s the link: http://www.angrybirdsgames.com/games/angry-birds-rio-online. This is another game that allows students to earn a turn and you can control who gets control of the cursor depending on the video-conferencing platform you are using. If a student wants to continue playing even through s/he has been asked to practice a task to “earn a turn,” I just take back full control of the cursor (much to the student’s dismay). From that point, it is up to you to decide if or when the student can earn more turns.
Build A Robot
The last online game I am going to discuss is called, “Build A Robot.” The same holds true about enlarging the screen to hide the comments section. Here’s the link: https://www.razorrobotics.com/games/build-a-robot. First you will need to click anywhere on the screen to begin. You will then receive some instructions about how to “scale” (i.e., enlarge or decrease the size) different parts you add to the robot. Therapy idea: discuss the different meanings of the word, “scale,” since it mentions it in the instructions. In the bottom left-hand corner, you’ll see the word, “Change.” If you click on each of the boxes, you will see different options you can choose from: eyes, body, head, music, background. This game also provides opportunities to require a student to “earn a turn.” It offers opportunities to work on social skills if you have two students build a robot together. Teach the vocabulary and skills about working collaboratively beforehand as well as strategies to deal with potential social problems the students may encounter such as: what to do if your partner uses a robot piece you do not like, what if the robot does not turn out the way you want it to, etc. This lends itself to working on “big problem” versus “little problem” and incorporating Social Thinking Curriculum’s, “Superflex and the Unthinkables” (e.g., Rock Brain) or the different colored zones from the, “Zones of Regulation.”
I hope you found the information provided helpful. I will be writing additional posts presenting more interactive materials as well as how to create your own links on Google Chrome’s App screen so that the websites you frequently use are at your fingertips. This discovery made my teletherapy-life a whole lot easier and more efficient. Until next time…
Written by: Tracy Sippl, M.S., CCC-SLP
Speech/Language Pathologist & Teletherapist