APT has expanded to Tennessee!

Springtime Activities for Speech and Language Development

Now that the weather is getting warmer and we are spending more time outside, it may seem more difficult to incorporate carryover of your child’s speech and language goals. Here are some ideas and activities to continue speech and language development at the park or your own backyard! Studies show direct links between physical activity and brain function, so let’s get outside and have some fun!

Chalk

Chalk is a great outdoor activity for children of all ages!

  • Draw circles of various sizes and assign point values to each for a cornhole type activity. Throw bean bags or wet sponges and practice your child’s specific speech target with each throw.
  • Target letter/sound awareness, decoding, and sight words by writing words and letters
  • Draw pictures and discuss quality concepts (size, color, etc), object function, and vocabulary
  • Hopscotch- identification of numbers, target sounds for articulation, etc.

Bubbles

Bubbles and bubble machines are an excellent way to target multiple speech and language goals!

  • work on inhibitory words: stop, wait
  • Utilize scripts and sentence completion tasks “ready, set, …..” and have your child fill in “go!”
  • Quantity and quality concepts: lots of bubbles, one bubble, big/small bubbles
  • Requesting continuance and cessation: more, all done
  • Location concepts/prepositions: up, down, behind, etc.
  • Talk about how you’re popping bubbles: poke, stomp, clap, etc.
  • If your child has articulation goals, pick a target word to practice each time you pop a bubble!

Nature Hunt

Use what’s around you for an “I Spy” type game

  • Find flowers or trees that match certain descriptions (color, size, shape, etc)
  • Target action words (searching, finding, looking, etc)
  • Discuss locations of items to target prepositions. Use Easter eggs or preferred items to hide. Ask your child to hide them for you, too!
  • Describe on object and have your child guess what item you’re describing for an early inferencing activity

Planting/Gardening

Make something together and watch it grow!

  • Plant flowers or seeds. Target following directions and sequences using first, then, next, last
  • Use quantity and quality concepts to describe what and how many of an item you’re planting
  • Target vocabulary and actions or object function: shovel/dig, seed/grow, etc
  • Get messy! Use the dirt as a “construction zone” and use vehicles for pretend play

Water Play

You don’t have to have a water table to enjoy water play!

  • Grab cups of various sizes and target concepts: full/empty, big/small, all/none
  • Use water balloons to hit target items (“the blue dinosaur”, “the yellow duck”, etc.) or to fill to different sizes (big, small, tiny, huge, etc)

– Emily Eibl, M.S., CCC-SLP