Using Games to Make Learning with AAC More Fun!

May 09, 2019

How do Games Help?

Playing games helps students to learn through a process of active engagement. It also aids in learning a variety of important skills such as critical thinking skills, visualization, creativity, teamwork, and good sportsmanship. Also, while playing games, students develop a variety of connections with the content – one of the most important being positive memories of learning.

Getting children on the spectrum to learn something new would require them to stay focused for a longer period of time. This could be challenging. Introducing games might be useful to motivate them to pay attention and stay focused on the subject. While using games for building skills with AAC is effective, users have also found that it is most effective when the AAC learner is in control of the process.

So what are some of the games parents and caregivers have had the most success with?

The Animalarium

Give the child a list of animals that you have pre-programmed into the child’s AAC device. Let them choose an animal from the list. Once they pick an animal, say Elephant, you can enact an elephant and ask them to join you in the enacting.

Over time you can further develop the interaction by asking relevant questions such as, “What is the color of an elephant?”, “Is it big or small?” using respective lists already created in the device or app. Thus you can teach advanced concepts such as color and size.Using Games to Make Learning with AAC More Fun!

Just Fooling Around!

Use this game to make learning verbs more fun and engaging!

Have a list of verbs or action words preloaded on the AAC device. Once the child chooses a word, you can act that out in the funniest way possible. You can also act like beloved characters like Mr. Bean for instance to perform the actions. This would make the activity more relatable and fun! Ask the child to join you as you fool around. In this way, the entire process of learning can be made more engaging. And the child will be happy to learn new words.


Place two or three items in front of the child, preferably some of their favorite toys and food items. Ask them to create a sentence around each of these items. Begin by modeling simple ones like, “I like my toy car” or “I like pizza”. Ask them to follow your lead. Then ask simple follow up questions like “Do you like hot pizza or do you like it cold?” or “What are your favorite toppings?”, modeling each as you go along before you ask them to take their turn. 

Games ensure that the child is an active participant in the learning process. Make sure you keep the games light and add in a whole lot of silliness to make the learning memorable. With all games be mindful of safety and customize the activity to whatever stage of learning the child is at.

We are sure many of you would have used games to make AAC learning more engaging for the child you work with. We would love to hear more about the games and activities you use! Do share your games and activities ideas with all our readers here 🙂