Category activities for speech therapy are a great way to challenge your students, whether they’re having trouble understanding categories or need to learn more about them. Here’s a quick rundown on what category activities are, how to implement them in your classroom, and some of our favorite ways to do so.
Category activities for speech therapy can be a fun exercise for children, adolescents, and adults. It’s a way to help with communication skills and word recall. These activities are especially helpful for patients with communication disorders like apraxia.
Category activities require organization of thoughts and ideas, which makes them great for children who need help with categorizing their day-to-day experiences or adults who want to improve their ability to organize information.
Category activities are just what they sound like—they’re activities that help your students practice identifying the category in which something belongs, whether it be an animal, food, piece of clothing, vehicle, etc. This skill is especially important for children with language disorders because sometimes they struggle to understand the concept of categories.
There are various ways to implement category activities in your classroom. Visual aids can be helpful for some students—for example, you can have a poster board with pictures of different foods and then a separate poster board with pictures of animals. Then you can ask your students to go over to the correct poster board when you say the names of certain foods or animals.
Another good way to implement category activities is by simply writing out different words on flashcards and asking your students what category those words belong in (e.g., “Is fjord a type of food?”).
Category activities can be a great way to engage students in speech therapy. Categories are a great first step to improving vocabulary, as they help students understand how words relate to each other. This can lead to more involvement in conversations, better writing, and even better reading comprehension.
Difficulty with categorization is a common difficulty for children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders, as well as many other speech and language disorders. These activities can help develop your child’s ability to group objects according to their similarities, which can improve their communication skills.
There are many ways to practice categorization skills. One way is by having your child do this exercise: put several different items in a box and have them pick out all the items that belong in one category (all the things that are blue, for instance). Sound easy? It isn’t! You may have to help them come up with a guideline for what makes something fall into that category. For example, is a purple cloud blue? What about a green chair? As you work together to answer these questions, you’ll be teaching your child how to think critically and hone their categorization skills.
Another way you can do this is by playing a game of “name the categories.” Make a list of different types of animals and have your child name them all (elephant, mouse, bird, etc.) Then say something like “Name all the animals that fly” or “Name all the animals that live in the ocean.”
Category activities are a great tool to help improve both receptive and expressive language skills, especially for the young. These activities will help the client learn how to identify items in a group that belong there and which ones do not.