“I’m NOT doing sentences!” was what his mum told me he kept saying over and over in the car while on their way to my session. Yeah right buddy. 45 minutes later you were cranky because we had to stop practicing sentences and you wanted to keep on going! I’ve held on to my most borrowed resource by other SLP’s for a while. Probably because I’m forever adding to it and tweaking the scaffolds or layout (it has literally been adapted 7 times in the last 10 years). It is my personal 100% fail safe way to add humour and rich expressive language goals into my sessions and I’ve just sat on it. Maybe I’m scared that you won’t understand how simple yet cool it really is (because it’s my #1 fave and it might not be yours). Maybe my style of therapy isn’t your style of therapy and hey, that’s okay also.
I hate to take the ‘serious’ nature of sentences away with giving it the title of “Silly Sentence Maker Game & Scaffolds“, because while you will be making ‘silly’ sentences such as the likes of:
“The unicorn is dusting the sandcastle in the haunted house”.
you will also be creating syntactically and grammatically correct sentences that just happen to be ridiculously funny that your kids eat it up and beg for more like it’s a piece of chocolate cake (insert cunning ‘I’ve outsmarted my kids again’ SLP cackle).
It’s a simple resource, but hey, sometimes it’s the simple things that really help to teach our kids, right? Grab a sentence scaffold strip, pull out mini picture cards, stick them on the scaffold and say your sentence. Kids love that there is a random choice and they never know what they’re going to grab. You can see their imaginations actively working as they start to say “The astronaut is fishing on the volcano….” I love how their intonation rises at the end like they’re asking me a question, like, surely, this couldn’t ever happen in real life… or… could it?
So, here are the details: There are 315 mini pictures. 105 VERBS. 70 SUBJECTS. 70 OBJECTS. 70 PLACES. The verbs are split so there are equal male/female pictures to incidentally target he/she pronouns if you so desire. And with a mix of regular and irregular verb pictures, why not throw that goal in on the side too? The subjects offer occupations and fairy tale creatures should you want to deviate into teaching occupations. The objects are broken down into groups because you probably also want to use these cards for semantic goals and sorting into categories of food, toys, transport, nature etc.
This set is also broken down into sentence types using clausal structures. You have the choice of using a blank scaffold containing pictures only, or a scaffold with words such as “The”, “is” and some lovely prepositional phrases “in the”, “on the”, “at the” to give those students who need it, the extra detail.
- Subject+Verb (SV) “The vampire is kissing”
- Subject+Verb+Object (SVO) “The vampire is kissing the puppet”
- Subject+Verb+Adverbial Phrase (SVA)”The vampire is kissing on the roller coaster”
- Subject+Verb+Object+Adverbial Phrase (SVOA) “The vampire is kissing the puppet on the roller coaster”
I have included a ton of expressive language and writing goals for your own progress monitoring so that you always have in the back of your mind how to continually develop and expand different aspects of your student’s language. You will also find listed some Common Core Standards that align with these goals, ranging from Kindergarten to 5th Grade making it a truly functional product. If you’re a Sentence Fan or just looking for another ‘essential’ for your therapy room that can adjusted and adapted to suit most of your caseload, then check out my popular Sentence Starter Scaffolds and homework sheets for a more in-depth product on sentences. May your therapy sessions be filled with laughter, wonder and engagement!