Blank comics are an engaging activity that are great for younger and older students alike and allow for a wide range of language skills to be targeted!
I have a Pinterest board dedicated to blank comics that I pull up in sessions or print from.
Feel free to use it to work on the skills listed below!
Comics rely on inferences; therefore they are a great way to practice inferring from pictures! Making inferences from pictures is easier than from text. Comics are a great in-between step between a simple picture and text-based inferences.
EXPECTED VERSUS UNEXPECTED
Discuss the behavior of the people in the comic – Were their actions expected? Unexpected? Appropriate? Inappropriate? And why.
A different way I work on this skill is by filling in the dialogue bubbles with text beforehand. Discuss if the dialogue is appropriate or makes sense for the scene being depicted. Was it on topic? Was it nice or mean? And then fix the unexpected statements to be appropriate.
CAUSE AND EFFECT
These are perfect for discussing why events occurred for students who are not quite ready to tackle this concept with text, for example using books.
Why did the man get tangled up? Why did the dog run off?
Many comics present a problem. What is it? Brainstorm one or more solutions!
Use the pictures to work on reading emotions with facial expressions and body language. Discuss or write in the bubble what they are thinking, feeling, or saying – and infer why!
Again, you may fill in the bubbles beforehand with socially inappropriate statements that the student must identify and fix.
Most comics are meant to be funny and are typically done with absurd situations. Use the comics to discuss humor – Why is it funny?
This is a fun way to generalize verb tenses – What is happening? What happened?
Another idea is to work on sentence formulation, whether it is complete sentences or expanding sentences. You can also provide a scaffold with a type of sentence structure for the student to use while filling in the dialogue boxes.
Work on retelling and sequencing after looking and discussing the comic. Again, these tasks are easier than retelling or sequencing text.
Predict what is going to happen next in the comic!
Don’t forget to access and follow the Pinterest board of blank comics!
Have you ever used blank comics in therapy? What other skills would you target?
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