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How to Use the Cootie Game in Speech Therapy

Using board games in speech therapy is a fun and low prep way to have fun and target a variety of speech and language goals.

One of the easiest ways to use board games is to use them without the rules!

Wait, what?

Did I just say use a game WITHOUT rules! YES!

When I first graduated, I remember being OBSESSED with playing games exactly how they were intended to be played. The problem with that is then we can’t use a game with all students. By tossing the rules aside, we are able to make the game work for ALL OF OUR students.

One of my favourite games to ditch the rules for is Cootie the Game! There are so many pieces that can create such cute and lovable bugs!

If you’re thinking, “what is Cootie?”, I will give you a quick run down. Basically, when following the rules, players take turns rolling a dice with body parts on it and race to build a completed Cootie.

I like to just use the pieces to follow the child’s lead and create whatever bugs we want!

You can use the Cootie game pieces to target a variety of language goals:

  • Describing: Talk about the features of your Cootie! What color is it? What size is it? What shape is it?

  • Comparing/Contrasting: Build two Cooties and talk about the ways they are the same/different.

  • Requesting: Have the child tell you which piece they want for their Cootie. You can even have them tell you how to build your Cootie.

  • Vocabulary: You can work on body part labelling (legs, head, eyes) or parts of a bug (antennae).

  • Possessive ’s: Name your Cootie and talk about whose body part it is (e.g. It is Jim’s).

  • Plural S: Since there are so many legs, you can talk about if the Cootie has one leg, two legs, or more!

  • Following Directions: Have the child put the Cootie together in a particular way. You can use multi-step directions, or directions such as ‘before/after’.

  • Sequencing: Build the Cootie and then have the child tell you how they built their Cootie. They can also explain to a parent or friend!

You can use this game as a stand-alone activity, as part of a Spring Preschool Theme or a Bug Preschool Theme!

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