Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Product Review: Pirate Talk by Super Duper

Oh that red box! Who doesn't love coming home to find one of these at their door?


When the nice folks at Super Duper contacted me about reviewing one of their products, I was happy to do so!  First, I'd be foolish to say no to an awesome product from Super Duper (yes I knew it would be awesome before even opening the box!). Second, I love getting new materials for my kids.  Third, I know many of you look to bloggers like me to find how what we really think of products and apps!  Here's what was in the box:


The Details:

Pirate Talk: Receptive & Expressive Language Game.
Created by: Sarah Michaels and the Super Duper Staff.
Grade Level: K-5
Description (from Super Duper's website):  Your students are about to embark on a swashbuckling adventure as they sail the high seas with Pirate Talk, the receptive and expressive language skills game! As students respond to each prompt, they move from island to island on the colorful game board and collect gold coins. The prompts reinforce seven essential communication skills:  Sentence Repetition, Answering Questions, Following Directions, Categorizing, Inferencing, Describing, and Social Skills.
Includes:  Game Board, 150 Color-Coded Receptive and Expressive Language Cards(5 subject areas, 30 cards each), Instruction Sheet, 6 Pirate Player Pieces, 100 Gold Coins, and Electronic Spinner (1–3)


A Closer Look:

My son has learned that a box at the door equals something fun.  So when we came home, he begged me to open this one right away!  We opened the box, took out the game board, and checked out the other items:

Notice M's foot anxiously waiting to play!
I skimmed the directions because I prefer games that allow you to fly by the seat of your pants.  I believe that if the directions are too long and complicated, the kids won't want to play the game.  Am I right?  Anywhoo...you can see that the game comes with basic directions and game variations!  This is great for changing things up and using the same materials for multiple sessions, but in new and exciting ways!


After that, I organized the cards.  I think it's a personality requirement for SLPs to love organization and clearly Super Duper is a company of SLPs! The box has a tray that holds your cards and the cards come color coded and with dividers:


The cards have different scenes on the front.  The scenes depict scenarios from 5 different categories:  activities, community, home, school, and people.  Here's a sample card from the "activities" section:


Super Duper really does have great illustrations, don't they?  On the back of each card are the prompts for each target area: Sentence Repetition, Answering Questions, Following Directions, Categorizing, Inferencing, Describing, and Social Skills. I found that we could use the pictures as conversation starters as well.

Notice that some cards allow children to earn "bonus" coins!

Instead of dice, Pirate Talk comes with an electronic game spinner! How cool is this?!? I love that you only have the option of spinning a 1, 2, or 3 and I may just have to use this with other games as well!  The kids loved pushing a button instead of rolling a game die and NOTHING fell on the floor!! :)


What may just be the best part of this game is that it comes with 100 gold coins! I didn't count them, I'm going to take Super Duper's word for it!  Boys and girls were thrilled to play this game and to earn these shiny coins!


Trying it Out:

My son was in love with the game and didn't really want me to bring it to work.  Once he got over that, I brought it to school and tried it out with my kids.  I used it with kids in Preschool and in Second Grade.  We played the traditional version, nothing fancy.  The kids LOVED it! I loved that I could use it in a mixed group and target different objectives with the same cards!  I did find that with larger groups of kids, we weren't able to "finish" the game by returning our pirates back to their home bases, but none of the kids minded. They were happy to count their coins to find the winner.  If you're wondering, 2nd grade loved it as much as the preschoolers.


Bonus Activity:

My super-observant friend Stephanie was quick to make this observation...There are 100 gold coins. New information suggests aiming for 100 articulation trials/session.  See where I'm going with this?  You can use the coins for motivation in an Articulation Challenge!


I made a quick "bank" out of a butter tub, but how much fun would it be to use a treasure chest piggy bank!?!?


The Take-Away:

Pros:

  • As a receptive/expressive language game, Pirate Talk has it all.  You can look at a picture scene and ask each type of question, in addition to targeting inferencing and pragmatics.
  • Versatility!  The game cards themselves make Pirate Talk versatile, but the adaptability of the game goes beyond that. (See description below)
  • Fun! Who doesn't love a pirate theme?!?
  • The description on the box says that this game is for Grades K-5, but the box itself says that you can use it with Grades K and up or Ages 4-10.  

Cons:

  • I can't think of a single one!


The Bottom Line:
Pirate talk is a fun, engaging addition to your therapy supply closet.  According to the game's description, you can use it to target 7 areas of communication. However, I have found that you can use it for so much more than that!  The game board can be used for an open-ended activity, the spinner can be used to make your game boards (like those from TPT) more fun, and the gold coins can be used to get 100 trials during Articulation Burst therapy!

If you have Pirate Talk, what's your favorite game variation?  If not, what's your favorite product from Super Duper?


2 comments :

  1. This game looks awesome! Thanks for all the details. It's so hard to get a feel for the game before making the purchase. This definitely helps!!

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  2. I have this game, but I've only played it once and then put it on my shelf. I may need to pull it back out and give it another try. I found that the electronic spinner takes waaaay too long to come to a stop; I put it aside and used a regular spinner.

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