Children with autism tend to be very visual learners. Visual support is often similarly effective with learners with different types of special needs. This easy farm animals matching activity teaches special needs learners to match photos and objects while working on new vocabulary skills.
I created this easy farm animals matching activity using my favorite farm animal lacing beads and a repurposed tea box. We have serious love for these farm animal lacing beads. As you can see from the photos, we have used these beads in for so many different activities, including building fine motor skills, communication and receptive language skills, in addition to matching skills, that they are showing signs of being very well loved!
Easy farm animals matching activity in steps
Select the farm animals you will use for this activity and make your photo cards
You can use my favorite farm animal lacing beads for this activity or similar farm animal figurines that you already have at home. Take a clear photo with a white background (a white sheet of printer paper makes a simple and inexpensive background) of each animal alone. Print out the photos (using a 9 photos per page format). Laminate the sheet of paper using a laminator and cut out the photos of the farm animals to create the photo cards you will use for this activity.
Prepare the farm animals
Put one animal in each compartment of the wooden tea box.
Full physical prompt : take your child’s hand and physically guide him or her to match the photo to the object.
Give a clear instruction
Make sure your child knows excatly what you expect him or her to do. Say “match pig”, “match sheep”, “match cow” or “match sheep” for each trial. Hand your child the photo of the animal to match to wooden animal bead. If necessary, give a full physical promt for the first try or tries. A “full physical prompt” means that you take your child’s hand and physically guide him or her to match the photo to the object (place it in front of the corresponding animal in the box). Every time you give an instruction, your child is hearing a vocabulary word (for example, “pig”). This repetition will help your child learn new vocabulary words.
Teach your child to match each photo to each animal
Continue doing the activity. Each time you repeat the activity, give your child less physical guidance until he or she is doing the activity independently.
Repetition teaches your child new vocabulary words.
Skills being worked on in this easy farm animals matching activity
♥ Matching photos → objects.
♥ Learn new vocabulary.
If your child is having trouble matching when presented with a selection of 4 animals, reduce the number of wooden animals in the box. Start with one animal. Once your child understands that he or she needs to match the photo to the animal. Add another animal so your child learns to match from a selection of 2 animals. Each time your child masters another step, add another animal to make the activity a little more difficult.
Don’t hesitate to use other small objects for this activity to work on a variety of vocabulary words.
Let know how this activity goes and don’t hesitate to leave your questions in the comments or to contact me directly.
Let me know if you have any questions about this activity!
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