In my sessions tomorrow we will be building an art robot. A few years ago, while at AAC camp, we built a similar robot using a cup---but I just couldn't get it to work at home. A quick google turned up a similar art robot with a pool noodle body, and it works perfectly. Here's what you need:
-pool noodle (just slice off a chunk a few inches long)
-3 markers (those are the legs)
-vibrating toothbrush (You can find these at the drugstore. I got a 2-pack at CVS for around $9.)
-paper (for the robot to draw on)
To add extra fun and language opportunities:
-pipe cleaners (arms)
-construction paper and/or googly eyes (eyes, nose mouth----we'll use construction paper to add in extra language choices about which color to use, whether we want big or small eyes, etc)
Assembly is easy! Put face pieces onto the pool noodle. Stick pipe cleaner arms in (we didn't even need to pre-make holes for these, they slid right in). Turn upside down and tape on markers (they should be more or less evenly spaced, and sticking out about the same length, or your robot will tip). Then stick the toothbrush into the center of the pool noodle, turn on, and watch it go! (I removed the toothbrush head from my toothbrush---it popped off when I tugged/twisted with pliers.) We also had to add a bit of tape around the body of the toothbrush to ensure a snug fit in the noodle.
I made a book to go with this activity. It's very simple and filled with opportunities to model core words for beginning AAC users (need, make, put, on, which, look, take, off, in, turn, it, go, stop, finished). I also plan on turning the robot on/off and modeling: my turn, your turn, on, off, go, stop, more, finished. Body parts (eyes/nose/mouth/arms/legs/body), colors (of markers and construction paper), and size descriptors (big/small) will also be used when we are making choices and assembling.
Here are the screenshots from "Building A Robot":
The book is available for (free) download. It's a powerpoint file and can easily be modified to fit your kids/clients/students! Here is the link to view/download "Building a Robot"