I created a set of zoo themed file folder activities to finish off all my zoo themed material I have been sharing about over the past month. These are great to use as a follow-up activity after reading one of the Zoo adapted books. I used these file folder activities in therapy but you can also have your students complete some of these file folder tasks at an independent work station. The set contains 6 different file folder activities with 2 versions of each for a total of 12 file folder activities. I’ll share about how I used these with my students.
Match the Zoo Animals – Level 1
For this activity the student needs to match the zoo animal to the one on the page. There are 5 animals on each side of the folder for a total of 10 animals. Some student may just be working on matching. I would model the animal name as I hand the animal to the student and have them find it on the board. You can also reduce the visual field and only work on one side of the file folder at a time.
If your students know some of these zoo animals you can use this as a following direction activity. I showed my student two animals and would tell them which animal to select. For example, I showed my student the polar bear and the turtle and said “take turtle”. My student took the turtle and placed it on the board. If your student uses PECS you can hold up an animal and have your student find the corresponding animal picture on their communication book and exchange it with you in order to receive the animal you are holding so they can match it to the file folder.
Match the Zoo Animals – Level 2
I really liked using these matching boards with my students because there are different ways you can adapt this activity. You can just have your students use this as a matching activity while you model those animal vocabulary terms. Give your student an animal and have them place it on the board. You can also hold up the animal and have your student request the animal either verbally or with an AAC device. For example, my student found “tiger” on his device to request the tiger picture and then matched it to the tiger on the board.
I also used this matching activity as a following direction activity. I held up 2 animals and told the student which animal to select. Since we have been working on animal feature I had some of my students follow directions involving feature concepts. For example, I held up the giraffe and rhino and said “take the animal with a long neck”. After my student selected the giraffe picture he placed it on the board.
Count the Zoo Animals
For this set of file folders, the student has to count the number of zoo animals in each square and attach the correct number in the box. This is great to help your students work on those one-to-one correspondence. Have your student point to each animal in the square as they count. For some of my students still learning their numbers I provided a choice of 2 numbers. After my student counted five toucans I held up the number 7 and 5. Then my student selected the number five and place it in the empty box.
You can also work on your student expanding their utterances as they tell you how many and the animal they see in each box. For example, “four elephants” or “I see four elephants”.
Big and Small Animal Sort
For these file folders the student just needs to sort the animals by size. They can place all the big zoo animals on one side and the small zoo animals on the other side. Again if you want to work on following directions involving size concepts, you can hold up 2 animals and tell your student what animal to select involving the big/small size concept.
The student has to complete the pattern. The easy set of patterns consists of 2 animals. I have the student say the animals in the pattern and then name the missing animals.
This pattern is a little more challenging because it involves 3 animals. Some of my students did really well with this one. Again, I have my verbal students name the animals in the pattern and try to fill in the blank to complete the pattern. For your non-verbal students you can name the animals as you point to them and then wait for your student to select the correct animal to continue the pattern or they can use their AAC device to request the needed animal to complete the pattern.