Mining Preschool Routines for PrAACtical AAC Opportunities

April 14, 2012 by - Leave your thoughts

Mining Preschool Routines for PrAACtical AAC Opportunities
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Meet Jenna, a spirited little girl with developmental delays who is learning to communicate using multiple modalities. Follow her along this morning as she goes to her preschool and gets dozens of opportunities to practice the AAC skills she is learning. 101 opportunities to practice target skills before lunch? It’s a piece of cake with this well-oiled preschool team! Jenna’s communicative functions are noted in CAPS and her communication modalities are in italics.

Let’s watch and see how Jenna is getting all that practice in as she goes about her day.

1. Enter the building, pause at a trained adult communication partner (receptionist) for Jenna to GREET with a vocalization and wave
2. ANSWER a social question (“How are you?”) with gesture (thumbs up)
3. Say GOODBYE with a wave
4. Once in the classroom, repeat GREETINGS with teacher, aide, and a friend.
5. ASK for HELP putting backpack and lunch away using a core language communication board
6. Say THANK YOU with a manual sign
7. After checking her schedule and seeing that she can go to the housekeeping area, Jenna is helped to hand a social cue card (“Will you play with me?”) on the play sink, to INVITE A FRIEND TO PLAY.
8. With the teacher modeling pretend play routine of setting the table, Jenna REQUESTS things like napkin, plate, and cup using an activity-based communication board.
9. Each time she is given something, Jenna THANKS her friend or teacher with a manual sign.
10. As they pretend to cook, Jenna NAMES or REQUESTS food items and utensils using an activity-based communication board (e.g., “Banana.” “I want that.”) and THANKS her partner.
11. After Jenna takes something belonging to her friend, she is prompted to return it and APOLOGIZE, saying ‘sorry’ with a manual sign.
12. As they play and ‘eat’ their pretend food, Jenna is helped to make COMMENTS with the activity-based communication board (e.g., “I like it.” “Yucky.” “Hot.”)
13. Jenna hears the transition signal (bell) and asks for HELP cleaning up using her core language communication board.
14. Jenna takes one of the spoons with her to check her schedule and transition to circle time. She SHOWS it to the aide who prompts her to say “Look!” (COMMENT) using her personal SGD. After a brief interaction, the aide helps Jenna repeat her COMMENT to a peer.
15. Jenna uses a shared classroom SGD (low tech) to PARTICIPATE and recite the Coral Creek pledge.
16. Jenna is called on to ANSWER a question about the weather, which she does with her personal SGD.
17. She uses her personal SGD to PARTICIPATE in the call-and-response aspect of the activity in which the teacher says the 5 ‘words of the week’ and the children repeat them back.
18. Jenna is chosen to be the Story Helper and uses a shared classroom SGD (low tech) to tell the teacher when it is time to ‘turn the page.’
19. She gets to CHOOSE which classmate can come up and be Weather Helper using her personal SGD.
20. Jenna is offered a prop and REFUSES (REJECTS) it with her personal SGD (“No, thank you”).
21. At sharing time, Jenna RETELLS a PERSONAL NARRATIVE by sequencing 4 prestored messages on her personal SGD.
22. Jenna uses a shared classroom SGD (low tech) to SING the clean-up song with her friends.
23. After transitioning to the block center, Jenna uses the communication board at the center to CHOOSE which blocks to play with.
24. She uses a shared classroom SGD to ASK a friend “Can I hold that?”
25. When her friend shares the bristle blocks, Jenna is helped to sign THANK YOU.

In less than an hour, Jenna has had more than two dozen communication opportunities. It’s going to be a good day.

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This post was written by Carole Zangari

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