Why You Need Ready-to-go Activities for Mixed Groups

3 Fun Activities for Mixed Group Therapy

You are working with a group of kids with articulation goals, but they all have different sounds at different levels form words to carryover.  For good measure, you have some students with language or social skills goals in the group, too! Maybe you are doing a make-up therapy session and had to grab kids who don’t usually work together.

You need help, quick! Read along for some fun activities for mixed group therapy that are ready to go!


  • You are working with a language group, but you have to do a makeup session for a student with articulation goals during that time slot, too.
  • You have 3 kids in the same class whose needs and goals are very different, but they have to be grouped together as they have limited times they can come to speech.  How do you address their needs?

Do these scenarios sound at all familiar?  The benefit of open-ended games is that you can accommodate kids’ needs using them. They aren’t your only option, but when you are doing a makeup session or figuring out how to combine multiple goals in one activity, they can be a lifesaver!

1. Open-ended games

There are so many open-ended games that are free to download online.  If you keep them in a page protector, you don’t need to laminate!

Hang them on a bulletin board and change the choices monthly. When you have a mixed group, let your students discuss among themselves which game is the best to choose that day. You will get to see their social skills for getting along in groups in action!

2. Physical Movement Activities

Students spend a lot of time sitting in chairs during the day. Even middle schoolers can appreciate having some time to get up and move around.

Try doing a scavenger hunt in your room. Give each student a paper and pencil to go look around your room and find 5 items that fit in the category you give them. Students with articulation goals could look for items that contain their target sound in beginning, middle, and end of word positions.  Easy!

The possibilities are endless for students with language goals. Just do some thinking first. Ideas include finding items in categories, finding items that go with vocabulary words, finding things that are not ___, or finding things that could be used in a past tense sentence.

3. Play an Old Fashioned Game

With all of the technology available to entertain students nowadays, most of your students probably haven’t played an old fashioned game like ‘telephone.’ You know, like the old kinds that had a cord?

Keep 2 paper cups around that are tied together with a string. One student puts a cup to their mouth and the other puts the cup to their ear.  Pass a message quietly around the table and see what happens to it as it gets repeated.

The student who starts each message has to use a word with their target sound or syntax goal. The first sentence has to be loud enough for you to hear. After that, the students whisper.

The last student has to say the sentence out loud. The first student has t repeat the original sentence. Then the group can compare/contrast the two messages. For social skills goals, discuss how this activity can compare to rumors being spread.

How About MIxed Groups for All Year?

When you have a group with mixed goals for the whole year, you need some longer-term solutions. Read some more ideas for handling mixed groups here and here.

Or take a peek at the activities to meet varied group needs in my store.

After many years of winging it, I spend the time now to put together materials that were made for skill-building and addressing multiple needs.

Put my years of experience to use and make your life easier!


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I’m Linda, an SLP who loves helping you build effective communication skills for your students using strategies and visuals. Pictures are time consuming, so let me make your life easier!

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