No musical talent is required. Young children enjoy nursery rhymes so you can sing these whilst playing the instruments, or make up your own tune. This activity offers opportunity for you to request the various instruments, maracas, drums, whistle, etc. (mand: 1-6M), or for you to perform another action “bang” or “shake the maracas” (mand: 7M). This offers opportunities for learners to practise different movements with their body or practise blowing which will support speech production and oral muscle strength. You can do these actions as motor imitation, “Do this” or “copy me” (MI*: 1-6M, 9-10M), or as receptive instructions “blow”, “shake maracas” (LR+: 4M, 8M). The targets around receptive identification of the instruments, “show me drum” (LR+: 3M, 5-7M, 10M) or as expressive labels “What’s this called?” (Tact: 1-7M) can be included too. You could also test expressive verbs, “What am I doing?”, “banging”, “shaking”, “singing”, etc. (Tact: 8M) These can be expanded to Intraverbals as functions, “you blow a ….[trumpet]”, features, “a keyboard has … [keys]”, or class “a drum is a type of … [musical instrument]” (IV†: 8M). If you activity focuses on nursery rhymes you could do some fun fill-in for these, “twinkle, twinkle little…. [star]” (IV†: 6M)
Preceding skills reference to the VB-MAPP Assessment tool:
Sundberg, M. L. (2008) Verbal Behavior Milestones Assessment and Placement Program: The VB-MAPP. Concord, CA: AVB Press.
*MI: Motor Imitation. +LR: Listener Responding. †IV: Intraverbal