Children love the outdoors, we all know this. However, most of their day is generally spent inside in classrooms. When we can put children in an environment that they love, they become more interested and eager to learn. I don’t have any hard research on that last statement for you, but I’d be willing to bet it’s true. Hmmm… maybe I’ll have to do another post on that. There are “nature schools” and “outdoor schools” and I’m sure they’ve done their research. Anyway… getting back on track here. Nature is cool. Nature is fun. Nature is interesting! So, why not work it into your speech sessions? Below, I give you one way to give it a try by making a nature sticky collage. If you’d like to hear more ideas, I encourage you to check out my Using Nature in Speech Therapy Podcast.
The Nature Sticky Collage
A nature “sticky collage” is a fun way to outside and talk about all of the different things that we see and feel. For this activity you will need:
- items collected from the outdoors
- contact paper
- a bucket, basket, or cup (to hold the items you collected from outside)
- a door, wall, or window (to mount the contact paper)
Have your students collect several different items that contrast in shape, color, size, etc. Then, mount a piece of contact paper for them on a door, wall, or window, with the sticky side facing them (so it’s sticky when you touch it). Then, have them choose one item to place anywhere on the collage. After, that you will give them directions to listen to carefully to help them complete the collage. For example, place the yellow flower beside the green leaf. It’s a great activity for listening comprehension and following directions. When their collage is complete, reverse roles and allow them to give you all of the directions to complete the task yourself. You both will wind up with beautiful nature collages! You can flip the collage around so the sticky side is facing the wall or window and it will help to protect the collage and will add a little outdoor sparkle to your speech room. After a couple of weeks, some of the items might dry out a bit, but it’s actually kind of pretty! It might look something like this:
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