Jokes to help language skills

Jokes provide a magnificent and fun language therapy activity for children of all ages. They are especially rewarding for children with limited verbal and/or social skills because they provide a script. They keep a social audience. They help with initiation of language. Jokes can easily be programmed onto Alternative and Augmentative Communication Devices.

Using low tech devices to tell jokes:

The BIGmack communication device is a one-step communicator. To effectively tell a joke on this device, program in the joke with a 2-3 second pause and then reveal the answer.

If you do not have access to a BIGmack, talking photo frames or tiny buttons like this can be used the same way.

The Step by Step communicator is ideal for jokes and turn taking. The child presses the button one time to tell the joke. Then press the button again to reveal the answer. Multiple jokes can be stored on this device with each push of the button speaking the next message. Children do need to be taught appropriate timing for pressing the buttons so that they do not speed through all of the messages.

Other devices like the Go Talk 9+ can be used for jokes and social communication. Program one button to tell the joke and the button next to it to reveal the answer.

Using this same logic, even communication boards can have jokes on them. But the communication partner (reader) needs to be more understanding since the answer to the joke will be apparent on the board.

Now, get out there and have your child engage with others and tell some jokes!

I’m even providing you with some seasonal jokes to motivate you…

Q. What’s the key to a good Thanksgiving dinner?
A. The turKEY!

Q. If April showers bring May flowers, what do May flowers bring?
A. Pilgrims!

Q. Why didn’t the turkey eat dessert?
A. He was stuffed!

Q. Why did they let the turkey join the band?
A. He had the drumsticks!

Q. What kind of music did the Pilgrims listen to?
A. Plymouth Rock!

Q. What are unhappy cranberries called?
A. Blueberries!

CC is a Speech-Language Pathologist. You can read more speech and language tips on her daily blog If Only I Had Super Powers.

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