Pragmatic (Social) Language Adaptations to Typical Classroom Routines

  1. Upon ARRIVAL, encourage kids to greet adults and peers.

2.  At FREE PLAY, reinforce children playing, sharing, helping, and talking to each other.  Dividing the room into centers/designated areas and breaking children into small groups can help facilitate this.

3.  At CIRCLE, introduce topics vaguely to encourage student participation by:

a)    Giving clues (ex:  “Today we’re talking about a place.  Teachers work there, and students sometimes ride a bus to get there.”)

b)    Having students gain more information by asking question (ex:  “Today, we’re talking about a place. . . [wait for/cue as necessary for student questions].

4.   At ART, describe and/or have students describe three or four features of the art project.  For example, before or after   making a spider, say “It’s an animal.  It’s black.  It has 8 legs and spins a web.

 5.  At SNACK, have helpers (ex:  cup passer or napkin passer) ask peers if they want the object they are distributing.  For example, “Jimmy, do you want a napkin?”  Also, encourage informal conversations about the topic of the day.

 6.  Play GROUP GAMES that encourage skills in using and listening to language.  Examples include:

a)    Simon Says – have children take turns giving and following directions

b)    Musical Chairs – have children listen for music to stop; consider having them share chairs with peers when there are less chairs than children

c)    When naming kids to take turns in a game, give descriptions of each child as its his/her opportunity to take a turn (“The next child to take a turn is . . . a boy wearing jeans and a blue striped shirt”)

d)    Give conditional directions in games (“If you’re a girl with brown hair, stand up, etc.).

by Mary Jane Fledderjohn, MS, CCC-SLP/L

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