Arrrr You Ready for Pirate Practice?

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pirate-speech-therapyThe pragmatics of pirates are a wonderful and fun way to work with kids on the |r|. Using this sound in the beginning, middle, and end of words can be tricky for many children, including those who are multilingual learners. So gather your mateys for some pirate fun while conquering the letter R.

Pirate Stories for Your Mateys

Kids adore pirates, but sometimes you need to get them into the theme. Books are a great way to immerse them into the wonderful world of pirates. New stories using these fun characters are constantly being published. Some popular choices to use are:

  • Shiver Me Letters: A Pirate ABC by June Sobel
  • How I Became a Pirate by Melinda Long
  • There Was an Old Pirate Who Swallowed a Fish by Jennifer Ward
  • The Pirate Who Couldn’t Say Arrr! by Angie Neal
  • Pirates Go to School by Corrine Demas
  • Pirate Pete by Kim Kennedy

Begin by taking a book walk through each book. Look for |r| words and practice saying them like a pirate together. Talk about how important the letter r is for all pirates and that it takes lots of practice.

Capture the Arrrr Treasure Hunt

Pirates enjoy searching for treasures, so create a game where kids can search for |-ar| words together. Words located will be added to a pirate treasure map for each of the students to keep track. If you do not have a lot of space, you could make a sensory box filled with pirate booty that includes words with the |-ar| sound. Hide them in the box and when kids find them they have to say what it is and decide if it has the sound. For larger spaces, hide photos of |-ar| items around and have clues leading them around to the words that will be added to their maps.

Word suggestions include: market, cart, target, yard, march, card, park, dark

Pirate Hands for Practice at Home

Crazy Speech World shares a great pirate craft that can be used to focus on the |r| sound and be able to take home. To do this, you will need construction paper, scissors, and something to color your pirate hands. Have each child trace their hands and cut them out. Then, add |r| words that each child is working on. Some students may need to focus more on initial sounds, while others will have predominately words that end with r. The last step is to decorate the hands so they look like pirates with patches on their eyes, hats, bandanas, and other traditional garb. To assist multilingual families at home, you may put translations of words on the back of the craft.

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