April 14, 2015 2 min read
Have you tried using Crocodile Dentist for Speech Therapy? It makes for fast and furious fun as you try to take out all the crocodile’s teeth without being the player to trap their finger when his jaws spring shut!
Number of Players: 1 – 4
Target:An easy motivator for any drill work. Great for repetitive articulation or grammar homework. Can be used for kids who need basic practice taking turns.
How the game is played: The basic idea of the game is to take turns in pushing down the crocodile’s teeth until suddenly SNAP – he decides he has had enough dentistry work for one day and his jaws spring shut with the player’s fingers inside!
The snap comes out of the blue and always takes kids by surprise ensuring plenty of giggles but is gentle enough not to hurt little fingers. I am always sure to play a turn myself where my own fingers get caught when I use this game for the first time just to be sure the kids know what is going to happen and don’t get a nasty surprise!
I have had a version of the crocodile dentist game in my kit since I was in Speech Therapy school. It is such a simple and versatile game that it has a multitude of uses when you work with young kids.
The most basic use of this popular game is to support children who are working on developing their turn taking skills. Young children often need an adult’s help to take turns playing a game and for some older children with developmental delays, waiting their turn can be a hard skill to master.
Crocodile Dentist is ideal for work on this skill because of it’s simplicity, minimal rules and because each turn is short meaning impatient players won’t need to wait for long.
With those who struggle with taking turns in all aspects of life and not just in exciting gameplay, you may want to work one on one rather than in a group. You can add a simple script to the play to reinforce their waiting “my turn” “your turn” or “Sandy’s turn” “Bobby’s turn”.
Articulation Drill Work
The Crocodile Dentist game is another great motivator for just about any drill work that involves repetition of a task.
The concept is simple, each time they correctly complete one of their drill items (such as saying a word beginning with their target sound, or giving you a sentence with the correct verb tense or pronoun), they get to take a turn with the croc.
You can make up cards with their drill items to make it more like a game or just pull them straight off the worksheet to keep things easy and fast.
None of us like working on repeating something that is hard to do but with this fun little game, speech homework shouldn’t be such a chore!
Now you know all there is to know about the game – you are ready to play. Have fun!
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