Children learn category concepts with fun, motivating card games at three difficulty levels.
- Match items by category
- Name categories and items by category
- Improve recall and critical thinking
There are three decks of playing cards. Each deck contains 54 cards (four cards for each of 13 categories and two Wild Cards). The decks are arranged in a hierarchy of difficulty:
- Deck 1—basic, earlier-developing categories:
Food, Animals, Clothing, Colors, Numbers, Letters, Tools, Body Parts, Musical Instruments, Toys, Sports, Furniture, and Rooms in a House
- Deck 2—differentiates basic categories into subcategories:
Fruits, Vegetables, Seasons, Kitchen Utensils, Containers, Fasteners, Farm Animals, Forest Animals, Pets, Appliances, Relatives/Family, Vehicles, and Rooms in a School
- Deck 3—challenging categories that interest older students:
Meats, Desserts, Things to Read, Buildings, Occupations, Jobs/Chores, School Tools/Equipment, Girls' Names, Boys' Names, Beverages, States, Jewelry, and Computer Equipment
Students match cards from the same category in four stimulating games like Steal the Pile and Stack 'Em Up. Each game comes with suggestions for expanding categorization skills and reinforcing goals in verbal expression. A student progress tracking sheet is included.
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- An efficient lexicon is not organized like a dictionary: instead, words and their properties (e.g., semantic meaning) are interconnected and associative. Language-impaired children have fewer lexical entries than their typically-developing peers and fewer connections among the words they know (Brackenbury & Pye, 2007).
- Categorization economizes storage of information in the mental lexicon. This facilitates efficient retrieval for future use and enhances the capacity to extend knowledge (Miller & Eilam, 2008).
- Effective vocabulary learning occurs when a student can relate new words to existing knowledge or schema (Perfection Learning, n.d.).
Category Card Games incorporates these principles and is also based on expert professional practice.
Brackenbury, T. & Pye, C. (2007). Semantic deficits in children with language impairments: Issues for clinical assessment. Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, 36, 5-16.
Miller, P., & Eilam, B. (2008). Development in the thematic and containment-relation-oriented organization of word concepts. Journal of Educational Research, 101(6), 350-362.
Perfection Learning. (n.d.). Research-based vocabulary instruction. Retrieved March 19, 2009 from www.perfectionlearning.com/images/products/pdfs/vlit/vl.research.2-4.pdf