December 5th, 2012 | Posted in Listening Skills

[To win a free iTunes download code for the Category Carousel app, read below!]

What Seasons Do We Celebrate?

Sometimes the kids I get to work with each week make me burst out laughing.

Earlier this week, I was with elementary age children in group therapy when I asked them: “Now that it’s December, who can name the different types of seasons we might celebrate?”

“Christmas season!” was the first answer. Next, “It’s holiday season, with Hanukkah!” and so on, with chatter about the season for snow and mittens. Then, from a little, very earnest voice: “I thought it was FLU season.”

So flu season may not exactly be a reason to feel merry, but there is a kind of joy in these funny little errors from kids. To me, it means they’re learning to think about the words and language that they hear in different ways — and that’s never a bad thing.

Get the Category Carousel app for 50% off — or free

The final offer in this special series is for half off my app Category Carousel. (Anyone can get the app at the special price of $4.99 in the App Store until December 19, so please share the link with your friends and colleagues.) As with the other offers, here’s an opportunity to leave a comment on this blog post and receive a code to download the app for free from iTunes.


"Point and laugh" [Creative Commons license]

photo by Ross Pollock

Tell us a little story about the funny things kids say, and we’ll send you a code to download the app for free. Thanks to all of you who have been reading along and participating in the contest for special offers on each ListenLoveLearn iPad App and iBook so far. I sincerely appreciate all of your comments, emails, responses, and reviews.

The “In the Zoo” Game

This little game that you can play with children anywhere and anytime helps strengthen language processing and recall through categorizing. Categories encourage children to think about words in different and creative ways, which helps them recall words they know, comprehend what they hear, and express themselves.

Here’s how to play:

  1. Ask the child to close her eyes, and let her be quiet for just a moment.
  2. Then, name a category that many animals will fit into. E.g., has fur, walks on two legs, likes water.
  3. Ask her to name animals that fit into that category, with eyes closed, until she gets to about five (adjust this according to age and ability).
  4. When she’s done, let her think of a category for you, and name as many animals as you can together!

Why the closed eyes? It helps the child to focus on finding the words that fit, and is a cue to start thinking.

Don’t forget to let me know about the little tips and tricks you use, and share the stories that we can all take a little joy in.

Happy holidays; I hope you and yours will be celebrating the holiday you love (and not participating in flu season!). Please stay in touch.
With warm wishes,
Lois Kam Heymann, M.A., CCC-SLP

4 Responses to “Do your kids make you laugh? [+ Limited time: half-off on Category Carousel iPad app]”

  1. Amanda says:

    Getting ready to do some grocery shopping, I said, “We need to run to the store.” My three year old then says, “Are we going to run with shoes and the stroller?” I said, “No, the van.” He was immediately upset because he was comparing his understanding of run (dad puts on his shoes and goes jogging) to a new one (we take the van for an errand). Needless to say, he wanted to run (with the stroller) 10 miles to the store!

    • Lois says:

      It’s a confusing time when they’re so literal! Thanks for sharing Amanda. We’ll be in touch with a download code for you.

  2. Joy says:

    I watched the video preview of your Category Carousel app and plan to use it after the holidays with an AAC user I see in therapy. Working on categorizing will help her understand the way her AAC device is set up. Are there any plans for the user to be able to add customized categories? I don;’t know any app that allows such customization, but it would be a great help if it can be done. Thanks – keep creating!

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