Friday, May 14, 2010

The Game of Life

It's really the mission statement of this blog-- often things that are not designed for language therapy can elicit some wonderful communication with your scaffolding.  Recently I used the iPhone app version of The Game of Life, currently $1.99 at the iTunes store, with a group of teens I see in a social communication group.  At first, I got some grumbling (shocker!) that we weren't using the board game version (that I didn't have), and got even more when I insisted that each turn-taker needed to report what happened on his turn.  This ultimately led to a lot more interaction- speaking, listening and nonverbal- between the players than if we had the board game, because really only one person at a time could see what was happening in the game.  After the initial resistance, the kids really enjoyed it and worked well together; I had been recently quite surprised to see how much difficulty this particular group had with the task of sharing/passing a laptop to complete a task together.

Language Lens
In addition to the communication targets listed above (sharing an object, taking turns, aspects of game play such as being a good sport, avoiding bragging), The Game of Life can also be used as a context for building schema about life events. Although kids may leave the game thinking it's appropriate to sue people quite often...

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