Written by Mrs. Imgrund, Speech-Language Pathologist
Many students with weaknesses in the area of expressive language have a hard time accurately describing objects, events, and concepts. Just the other day I asked an elementary school student to describe an apple. She said “an apple is when it’s fall!” Although her description was on the right track, it certainly wasn’t very detailed. This is where the Expanding Expression Toolkit (EET) comes in!
The EET is an intervention designed to help children improve their oral language expression; especially their ability to describe objects, events, and concepts.
The students use the EET strand (the rope with colored balls attached) as a visual and physical reminder to give a complete description. Each icon on the EET corresponds with one aspect of a complete description:
Green Ball- Green Group (What group does it belong to?)
Blue Ball – Blue Do (What do you do with it? What does it do?)
Eye Ball – What Does It Look Like? (What size, shape, and color is it?)
Wood Ball – What Is It Made of? (What is it made of or made from?)
Pink Ball – Pink Parts (What are its parts?)
White Ball – White Where (where do you find it? Where would you use it?)
Question Mark Ball – What Else Do I Know (prior knowledge, fun facts)
My students LOVE using the EET and I have seen great improvements in their describing skills. Many of them know the EET chant by heart and are already using this strategy independently. Although describing is only one aspect of expressive language, it is an important one!