Saturday, November 2, 2013

{Review} Expanding Expression Tool

You know how there are just some therapy materials that you simply cannot live without?  Well for me, one of those items is the Expanding Expression Tool by Sara Smith.

(Graphic Courtesy of Expanding Expression Tool)

This multisensory tool is an extremely versatile item that can be used to target the following skills (to name just a few):
- oral expression
- written expression
- vocabulary comprehension
- defining and describing
- making associations
- stating functions of objects
- stating categories
- stating similarities and differences

How it works:  
Well, first of all, the kit comes with the following items:
- string/ball visual tool
- kit manual
- object cards for describing
- stickers for writing
- poster
- dice game
- picture icon cards

(Graphic Courtesy of Expanding Expression Tool)

Since students with language disabilities often have difficulties describing, this tool is absolutely awesome because it breaks down the tasks listed above into smaller pieces.  The kit is designed with designated colors and repetitive materials.  Each color stands for a specific attribute of an item (e.g. green group, blue do, pink parts, white where, etc).  Students methodically move through each color to describe objects, define, make associations, etc.  (I use this tool most often with describing, so that is my frame of reference, but as you can see, it can be used to target so many other skills too!)

Here is a specific example of how to use the item for describe.  Take a banana for example.  Typically, if I asked a student to describe a banana, he or she might say, "you eat it" or "it's yellow".  (Or if I'm really lucky, maybe "You eat it AND it's yellow.")  By using the EET, look at all of the ways that this item could be described...

- Green Group: This item belongs to the fruit group.
- Blue Do: You can peel the item and you can eat it.
- White Eye: This item is yellow and it is shaped like a crescent.
- Pink Parts: This item has a peel and a short stem at the top.
- White Where: This item grows on trees, but you find it most often in a grocery store, typically in the produce section.
- Orange Extras: This item is often eaten by monkeys and the peel can be slippery.

Here's a closer look at the visual tool.

This is the manual that comes along with the kit.

These EETCHY Steppers are an add-on that can be used to get your students up and moving throughout a therapy session.

What I love about this item:
- The string/ball visual tool is a step-by-step way to describe that is hands on and really grabs a student's attention.  My students get excited every time I pull "him" out.  (Each group has their own name for him and they all remember his name.)
- This tool can be used for SO many skills.  It is ridiculously versatile!
- The manual comes with a large variety of materials that support the program and the hands-on materials that come with the kit.

The kit is $229.00 and can be found here but there are also tons of extra add-ons to enhance your kit that can also be found at the same site.

To find out more about the Expanding Expression Tool, you can go to their website and read all about it.  

Disclaimer: This item was given to me for review.  No other compensation was provided.  The opinions expressed here are solely my own.

1 comment:

  1. This multisensory tool is an extremely versatile item that can be used to target the following skills (to name just a few):best virtual assistant program