Thursday, March 6, 2014

Go Away Big Green Monster

Go Away Big Green Monster app is actually an interactive book, a really fun one that my students really gravitate towards. It can be read with or without narration or with a song. 

What's great about this book is that each page lends itself to talking about individual body parts using multiple descriptions.  With the turn of each page, the monster gains more and more parts to his face. I stop on each page to comment about each body part the monster gains by using a full sentence. Depending on the student and his goals, I use different types of sentences:  "two eyes," "he has 2 eyes," or "he has 2 big, yellow eyes."  The addition of body parts page by page allows for plenty of repetition sentences with similar sentence structure.

While I read the book or use the app, I use this communication board to enhance and support language. Most of my clients use 1 descriptor at a time, but in some cases up to 3 can be used per body part.

Then, as the book continues, each body part disappears one by one.  I use the turn of each page to practice use of the negatives such as "no hair" or "he has no nose."

I point to each icon on the topical board as I model the intended sentence for each page. The student can then either point to the icons to formulate sentences, or as in most cases, the student will point and simultaneously vocalize each sentence.  After s/he comments on what he sees, the student can touch the body part on the app, which makes a fun sound as it wiggles. As the student is first learning the app, I also have him/her find the same body parts on his/her own body as well.

To generalize the skills learned in this activity, I use the same topical board while playing with "Mr. Potato Head." Most of the time, I will play "Mr. Potato Head" directly before or after using the "Go Away Green Monster" app.  The student can use the board to request pieces (e.g "blue eyes," "2 ears") and sometimes we even comment on what the "Mr. Potato Head" is missing in order to request pieces.  For example, if the student comments, "he has no hair," or "no hair," I respond "that's right, he has no hair. Let's find some." 

I also use the same topical board with my "One-eyed, one-horned, flying purple people eater" doll right after playing with the app. I model how the same words on the topical board can be used to describe other monsters that look different. 

The app is one my students ask for quite often and I love that the language is so easily generalizable. There are tons of fun things to talk about in the app and book!  The visual supports appear to help student initiate the use of new comments and help add more descriptions to their language as well.

Hope you find it as fun and productive as I did!

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