Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Learning to ask "where are we going?" and "where is + (location)?" with visuals and google maps

I wanted to share this new activity I made to help teach answering and asking *functional* where questions. 

I created this "book" in boardmaker, found on here:

Often times with students with autism, low tech paper visual supports are sufficient in order to help them understand and use the expected language for the activity.  But, to make it slightly more engaging, I saved the Boardmaker book as a PDF and saved it in iBooks so that it could be read from my iPad. (This also helped the book be more available to me across my various locations). 

The most fun part about the activity is that most of the activity is completed in song. What's great about using song is that it allows for natural repetitions of expressive language within the activity. 

I sing each page to the tune of "where is thumbkin."  For example this page:

Would sing like this: " Where is are we going? Where are we going?" Then, I would stop and ask a comprehension question "Where is the place where we buy food?" The students can use the two icons to point to as a means to answer the questions. 

Then, on the next page here:

I sing: "Going to the store, going to the store!" 

In the next verse, we  practice the *functional* question: "Where is the store? Where is the store?" and follow with: "There it is! There it is!"

A great follow up activity is to practice looking up where places are located on google maps or using yelp. Following up with a google or yelp search makes the asking of "where" questions really functional (and not just for fun practice). 

Hope you find this activity as fun as I do!