Adapt matching games to teach Bible lessons to children with disabilities
Learn how to adapt matching games to teach Bible lessons to children with disabilities, and learn how to use matching games to create meaningful connections between children and faith. In this blog post, we’ll talk about different ways to use matching games with children with disabilities.
What are matching games?
You are probably thinking of games where you look at many upside down cards. Each card has a picture, and you try to remember where the pictures are to make a match. Did you ever feel frustrated looking at so many cards and wonder how you were ever going to remember them all?
We are going to talk about ways to adapt matching games so that they become successful tools for children with disabilities to learn. When children feel successful, they learn and retain more!
Why do I need to adapt games in disability ministry?
Adapted games are helpful for children with mild-to-moderate-to-significant disabilities, and they can:
- reduce the frustration of typical matching games with lots of card placements to remember
- help head off unwanted behaviors because you are helping the child be successful in a fun way
- provide meaningful language because children with disabilities often need multiple meaningful repetitions of concepts for true understanding. Adapted matching games help get in those repetitions.
Not sure if an adapted matching will work for the children you serve? Here is a free Love Your Enemies Matching Game for you to try out.
Here are the downloads!
- Instructions for Love Your Enemies Matching Game (PDF)
- Love Your Enemies Matching Game (PDF)
- Complete Love Your Enemies Matching Game (Members Only)
How do I use adapted games in my ministry?
After the lesson, decide how many cards to lay out. The Love Your Enemies Matching Game above has 36 cards and 18 matches. That can be too many. You could lay out 8 cards for 4 matches at a time to lessen frustration and unwanted behaviors. Take turns turning over cards while being encouraging and reinforcing the lesson.
Some ideas for using the adapted matching game:
- Lay one side faceUP and one side faceDOWN – this helps children match more successfully
- For children with moderate-to-significant disabilities, put three cards (one match and and extra odd card) face down. They can pick up all three and match. This usually leads to children feeling successful and participating more.
- Lay all the cards on the table faceup and let children put them together like a puzzle.
- If you have sore losers, make finding all the matches the group goal instead of whoever has the most matches is the winner.
Children with disabilities often learn more when adapted matching games are used. Adapt matching games to teach Bible lessons to children with disabilities using the above tips and free downloads.
To gain access to ALL our games, Join The Adapted Word Membership!
Here you will find hundreds of lessons and an ongoing addition of resources.