Might as well kick off spring themes in speech therapy with the first sign of the season. Not the giant puddles of melted snow, hatching eggs, or slightly more hours of daylight. Nope. The BUGS.
I believe it was February when I unenthusiastically said (well, sang) to my kids...."The bugs are back in town!" 70s rock, anyone? Oh well, we can just embrace this student-loved theme and make the best of it! After all, relevant and high-interest themes are the most effective!
Insects (unfortunately) seem to make their appearance before any other hints of warmer weather, so it's the perfect introduction to spring themes in speech therapy..... right after you celebrate the literal change of seasons, that is!
Luckily, there is no shortage of fun-filled options for a bug theme. Try any or all of these speech and language activities on the fly (get it?), since they do not require any printing or prepping. Perfect for teletherapy.... or those days the printer is broken, you're running late, or any number of reasons you want to take the easy way out!
Virtual Bug Hunt
A virtual bug hunt is sure to stimulate a ton of language! This digital PDF is a wonderful way to introduce some vocabulary, while also gauging your students' knowledge of the topic. Get up close and personal with bugs using the real photos!
Bug-Themed Guessing Game
This bug guessing game is my favorite functional activity for working on answering and asking questions, understanding categories, describing, comparing and contrasting, and a million other language (and even articulation) goals!
Not only can you target so many skill areas, but students don't even realize they're "working". Another beautiful thing about the activity is that you can use it digitally in Google Slides, or with annotation tools on the PDF version. Plus, you get access to a printable version, too! Did someone say the most fun homework assignment ever?
Bug-Themed Websites, Games, and Activities
The internet is crawling with bug-themed activities! The Pest World for Kids website is full of amazingggg and interactive games. No ads, just well-designed activities that kids love!
A virtual bug hunt is always fun on the Disney Now website! And even your self-proclaimed bug expert students will learn something while looking at these photos of bizarre bugs on National Geographic Kids.
As always, thecolor.com website has tons of digital coloring pages. Check out all of the options in their insect category! Memory is also an easy time-filler (and language elicit-er), so check out this leveled game on the National Geographic Kids website.
These digital stickers are about as cute as bugs get. The 12 stickers can be used like mini objects on a platform like Google Slides. You can freely move them around, resize and duplicate them, and obviously, talk all about them in the process!
As with other digital stickers, you can use this set for several quick language activities, including guessing games, comparing and contrasting, matching games, creating scenes or fun stories, and more!
Search the following book titles/authors wherever you access digital versions of books (your local library, YouTube, websites, online stores, etc.):
In the Tall, Tall Grass by Denise Fleming is a fun book about backyard bug exploration.
The Very Hungry Caterpillar and The Grouchy Ladybug (both by Eric Carle) are some classics for the theme.
Ten Little Ladybugs by Melanie Grath is a great rhyming and counting book.
Hank's Big Day: The Story of a Bug by Evan Kuhlman is about a day in the life of a pill bug.... it's more eventful than you might think!
The Pest World for Kids site has some really adorable and beautifully illustrated e-books about bugs.... for free!
These 3-4 minute videos from (who else?) Pest Quest are perfectly timed for a quick therapy activity.
Don't miss the National Geographic Kids insects playlist for tons of options with real photos and video footage.
Need some song videos for preschool or kindergarteners? Here are links to The Ants Go Marching and The Itsy Bitsy Spider. And here are several more songs with a bug theme (no videos though, just lyrics).
Reading Passages and Articles about Bugs
The National Geographic website is a goldmine for information on bugs that you can read with your students. Don't miss this part on very strange, albeit interesting, facts about bugs!
And this Newsela article discusses how to create a home garden full of pollinators, while this Newesela passage shares about how houses are habitats for bugs, whether we like it or not (and I'm guessing, we don't)!
Bug-Themed Activities for Older Students
In addition to the articles listed above, the Pest World for Kids website (I promise I have no affiliation!) is full of great ideas, and they even have a section devoted to insect activities for middle schoolers! Ummm jackpot!
Simon's Cat videos are great for so many speech therapy goals, and this fly-themed one is no different! It's a great way to work on inferencing, perspective taking, predicting, story retelling, problem-solving, and so much more. Plus, your students are sure to relate to it!
Get spring themes off to a fun start with all things insects for your younger and older students! While these activities will keep your students busy as a bee in speech therapy, you won't be bugged to print or prep a thing for insect week!
Want more ideas for themed therapy sessions? Download my free lesson planning spreadsheet for spring!