Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Yo Ho Ho and a Bottle of Bubbles!!

Far far away on a small island in the Caribbean sea, it wasn't business as usual for one of the schools, as a crazy (by general consensus) Speech Therapist marched up and down shouting strange things like "Arrrrgh" and "Ahoy Mateys" and singing "Yo ho ho and a bottle of whatever came to her mind!" Just as they were deciding to make that call to finally give her the help she needed..... they learnt that it was Talk Like a Pirate Day!!!!

Shiver me timbers! First off I must say that I wasn't planning to talk like a pirate today, nor did I even plan to observe the day's existence. However the constant pirate tweets by @lessonpix and the @speechdudes, as well as an excellent blog post  from lesson pix with great tips for the day, got me hooked (giggle).

I headed for my toy cupboard and collected all the treasures I could find. Unfortunately I didn't have any pirate garb lying around, so this was what I came up with in the end.

And off I went to school, where I worked with children aged 14 months to 10 years. The highlight of the day of course was pop up pirate, which I used to target a range of skills, for individuals and groups. It went surprisingly well with my 4-6 yo group who are working on awareness of others, attention and listening, and turn taking and we had lots of fun. 
I had another group of little boys between 3-5 who are known to be runners and roamers, and our main focus is engagement, maintaining joint attention, imitation skills etc.  That group marched around the room with me shouting "Arrrgh" and "Yo ho ho. (and a bottle of bubbles)" They also enjoyed group favorite no. 2: putting the pirates on the pirate ship and sailing it across to each other :) 

I wondered to myself how I would adapt my theme for my baby group. We ended up doing lots of mirror play saying 'arrrrgh' and making fun sounds, and played the Pierre the parrot app on the iPad, which is always all round fun. 
However some little ones didn't quite like my "arrrgh" so we had to rock and go "shhhhhh" instead. 

My highlight of the day was showing a teacher how she could use AAC in her classroom for the children to play an interactive game together. I found a great board from Boardmakershare, which really worked well for requesting and building vocab and the children loved it! What I loved is that this board didn't only have vocab for the game, it also had visuals for 'my turn', 'your turn,' 'high five'  etc. which made the interaction even richer :)  

                                            He especially loved my 'Arrrrgghhhhhh!'

So I had a fun "Talk Like a Pirate Day' and, despite the strange looks from some teachers, I think the children had a blast! 

Did you do anything fun today?? 


  1. I like your pirate talk! Some of my students could use it to work on their /r/s :).

  2. That's a great idea for /r/ :) Thanks

  3. And I think my head is spinning at the end of the day - you're amazing!!!!