Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Literacy Workbox Idea

Purchase board books with various pictures and concepts in them.  Have students find certain items and pictures in the books.  Ask them to mark or circle the pictures using Dry Erase Crayons.  (You can purchase dry erase crayons at any craft or department store or at Crayola.com.)

By using dry erase crayons, the student’s findings become more visual and concrete.  The activity is more like a task box where there is a clear beginning & end.  Take the book in the picture below for example.  

Here the student has been asked to identify and mark certain items in the board book.

The child knows when all the wording on the page is crossed out that they have found everything and may move onto the next page.  This activity supports a students ability to stay on task, as well as addressing listening and comprehension skills.  There is also a fine motor component to this workbox.  

Extra Credit:  You can break your dry erase crayons into small pieces so that the students have to use the correct pencil grip in order to hold them—we call these "Crayon Nubbins". 

Teacher's Tip:  "Crayon Nubbins" are a great way to address  pencil grip.

Another extension for this activity is to use dry erase crayons on seek and find books that are printed as board books or on "I Spy" floor puzzles.  

The student has been asked to draw a line between the puzzle key
& the matching image in the picture as he finds them.

Instructor's Insight: A Task Box, which is sometimes referred to as a Workbox,  is an activity that is designed with the following three major components in mind. 
  1. How much work? 
  2. What work? 
  3. When is the work finished?
This concept is based off of the TEACCH model and research done by the University of North Carolina.  Students with Autism are visual learners. By presenting the work in this manner, it helps the child's level of anxiety go down making them more successful and independent, which in turn builds their confidence. 
You can learn more about task boxes by visiting the Tasks Galore website or by reading the book "How Do I Teach This Kid? by Kimberly A. Henry. One great blog to visit to get your taskbox library built up is Building Blox.  

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