I have worked and talked with many teachers that have used my books to help kids with special needs. As well, I have done many plays with kids with special needs, and the change and awareness that is created during the process is amazing! Knowing this, I wanted to share an idea that I just received from a teacher. Here is what she wrote:
I used your Midsummer Night’s Dream for Kids as reading material. I couldn’t get my high school special ed students to reread anything. Their thinking was I have already read that once and do not need to repeat. But by introducing this as a play that needed to be word perfect and beginning on page one each day, they were willing to participate. They were rehearsing for a show not simply earning a grade for the reading class. Your materials made all the difference. Most important, reading skills improved.
A clever use of my books, or plays in general, to get special needs kids more engaged in reading! Just a lesson idea from a teacher in the world. I hope this helps, as well as I’m always here to help if you need it, just reach out to me!
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The Skinny: I came across this very clever toy that is great for motor planning and hand-eye coordination, as well as it is really fun to play! It is called Djubi (pronounced Joo-bee). As you can see from the picture, it’s a net with a hook on it. You simply shoot the ball (similar to a sling shot, but easier) to your friend and they catch it with their net. The ball is soft, so it doesn’t hurt if it hits you, and you can do it very softly to build confidence.
What it is: Djubi (Joo-bee)
What it’s used for: Motor Planning and Hand-Eye coordination
Ways to use it:
As you can see from the photo on the lower right, it takes a bit of motor planning to launch a Djubi. And with this game, I would build up to it in two steps:
Just throw the ball to your friend, and let them catch it. Start with the simple piece of underhand and then progress to “step-and-throw” overhand.
After they have that figured out, then move to the sling-shot action. On the top of each of the nets is a little hook. This hook is used for hooking the rubber band from the ball on. Then, pull back and let go! It’s pretty simple, but can be a bit tricky if you have some challenges. Keep going until you get it!
This is the other side of the game. Catching the ball.
Start off slow, just underhand it to your kid to have them watch the ball into the net at slower speeds.
Increase the distance until they can catch it from across the yard. Many kids have a difficult time with items coming directly at them. Teach them to catch it off to the side, to alleviate some of these challenges.
Once they have the underhand in control, then move to sling-shotting the ball to them. It will be farther distances and faster speeds, so it’s important to progress up to this level.