INTRO: Okay, this is not just a political statement. I’m talking about students who use AAC. We know that students who use AAC are typically not great at asking questions. There are so many wonderful ways to work on asking questions, such as interviews, role play, and using fun apps such as Fortune Ball, Who’s Your Mummy, Magic Coke Bottle, and Ask Ya Mummy (see reviews at:
QUESTIONS AS PART OF SHARED READING: Another super easy way to help students practice questions is to include questioning as part of Shared Reading. Here is more information:
• How Do We Do It? While we read a variety of highly motivating books on the iPad (ex: Booksy, Humpback Whales; Storytime for Kids; Meet Heckerty) on the iPad, and Evelyn used her Eco with eye gaze to ask questions. The questions she asked were not important – the important factor was that we had to TRY to answer them. For example: Whales story – WHERE? ‘I think they’re in the ocean – I think it’s the Pacific Ocean’; Sharks Story: WHO? ‘I don’t know too many sharks. The one I know the most about is Jaws. Do you know who he is?
• What Are We Accomplishing? In addition to giving students a chance to practice questions, we are:
- Building background knowledge for future books
- Developing text-to-world connections
- Modeling how to answer WH-Questions
•Share-Back the Information: It helps if the information is not so fleeting. These activities help to support students in remembering what we have shared. Here are two examples for capturing the information for future use:
- Explain Everything: We put the information into a slide with the whale, then recorded it verbally with text highlighting, and saved it as a movie that students can watch repeatedly.
- Path On – Swipe to Type: We picked a fun shark graphic, then wrote a summary of our information around the shark.