Having raised three sons who are all in their young 20s, I am a Nintendo-loving mom-nerd. I have fond memories of my boys collecting Pokemon cards, pouring over each character’s information, powers and evolution and sharing this information with one another. My boys are first generation Nintendo, and I’ve enjoyed being part of this fantasy world with them for many years.
Much to my delight, most of the kids I work with are also Nintendo lovers. Sharing in the imaginations of the Pokemon world has helped me to connect with my students. In an earlier post, I described how I am using Nintendo’s first social media app, Miitomo, to address social skills.
Recently the app Pokemon Go was released and I love it! I downloaded it almost immediately and enjoy the virtual reality and challenges to catch Pokemon. I also started to see LOTS of kids who were obviously also hunting Pokemon, many working together in groups OUTSIDE!
Now I know there’s been a lot of criticism of Pokemon Go, but there’s also been positive feedback. So far, anything that gets kids out of their houses, moving, working together and sharing an imagination is good in my book. Of course I couldn’t help but think through the lens of an SLP! My students are going to want to talk about Pokemon Go, and I’m getting ready to capitalize on this motivating topic! Here’s five ideas of how to use Pokemon Go in your speech sessions:
1.Ask students to draw a picture of their favorite Pokemon. They could then write a description of the character. The EET can easily be used during this activity!
2. Sequencing can be targeted by having students draw/write about the evolution of a chosen Pokemon character. Sequencing can also be addressed by having students provide a game “how-to”.
3. Students can draw maps of an area they have searched for Pokemon, indicating where the creatures were found.
4. Ask students where they think a Pokestop should be and why.
5. Have students create their own Pokemon-themed treasure hunt. Let them decide where Pokemon would be hiding (in your speech room or in other area) and provide clues for other students. This would be fun to do among groups throughout the day!
You might want to also watch this video together and discuss!
Do you have any other ideas for how to use Pokemon Go in therapy? If you do, please share!