Magic Moments with Toca Store

May 21, 2012 by - 2 Comments

Magic Moments with Toca Store
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It’s no coincidence that some of our favorite apps to use with AAC kids don’t rely on good receptive language in order to be successful and have fun. Count us among the fans of Toca Boca for their creative play-based apps with great graphics and lots of repetition with variety. In this post, we share some Magic Moments for using Toca Store as a communication-building experience.
1. Core Word Practice: Lots of opportunities for practice with familiar nouns (e.g., banana, doll), common verbs (e.g., get, see, want) and modifiers (colors, some, little).

2. Negation: This is another fun app to use when teaching a child to use language appropriate for negation, protests, and rejection. We like teaching that under low stress conditions like this at first to build their skills. Once they get the hang of it, then we help them use it under more natural conditions. That way we can avoid the initial teaching when they are frustrated and stressed-not the best state for learning. This is a great app for teaching no/not under low stress -conditions. “It’s a doll.” “No!” “It’s not a doll. It’s a bear.” “It’s a banana.” “No!” “It’s not a banana. It’s an egg.”

3. Sentence Structure: We love this app for practicing simple sentences and giving that repetition with variety that we aim for in our therapy sessions. E.g., “Put it in.” “Take it out.” “I see a __” “What is it?” “That is ___.”

4. Sequencing: Shopping at the Toca Store is a sequential activity, giving us ample opportunity to work on sequencing. “First, we ___.” “Then we ___.” etc.

5. Scripted Conversation: Once we’ve had some practice putting core words into sentences, we’re ready for a longer conversation. Scripted conversations work really well with some of our AAC friends who do best when there is a lot of predictability in the activity. With each part of the activity, we can use scripted dialogues like these for two important things: a) language practice for them and b) an opportunity for aided language input and language expansion for us.

  • Look!
  • I want that.
  • It’s a _(noun)__.
  • You want the _(modifier)___ _(noun)__
  • What did we do?
  • I know!
  • We __(verb+ed)___.
  • We __(verb+ed)___ __(modifier__).

Toca Store offers many more opportunities to build vocabulary and new language structures. Hope you have some Magic Moments with this great app sometime soon!

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This post was written by Carole Zangari


  • Christine says:

    I also love Pepi Bath and Pepi Doctor. Two fantastic apps about real life experiences with large and simple graphics. I get so much language out of my students!

    • Avatar photo Carole Zangari says:

      Yesssss! Thanks for reminding me about those. Pepi apps are so engaing, aren’t they? Christine, I’d love to have you write a post for us on how you use these. 🙂

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