Project Play’s best pediatric speech therapy practice activities to do with your kids on the go!
Many families leave speech-language therapy sessions with some sort of homework: practice a specific sound for articulation, work on asking and answering questions or build new vocabulary. However, between extra curricular activities and school work it can be tough to find the time to practice for speech therapy!
One of our recommendations to busy families is to practice speech in the car. Think about how much time you spend driving around with your kids! Here are a few great ways to maximize your time and practice speech therapy goals while you’re on the go:
1. Play I SPY
This classic car game can be adapted to meet the developmental stages of both younger and older children. Young kids can build vocabulary by simply naming things they see. You can help them by pointing out trees, houses, the color of cars and naming items within the car. For older kids you can describe objects for them to guess what they are. For example you could say, “what is rectangular and has the colors red, yellow and green on it.” You can also go more in depth by teaching new adjectives and description words!
2. Sing Nursery Rhymes
Singing nursery rhymes, ABCs and other rhyming songs can help your child quickly acquire new vocabulary. Singing and rhyming make it easier to remember new concepts and commit new vocabulary to memory. Time in the car is a great way to reinforce what your kids are learning through rhymes and songs.
3. Sound Searching
While riding in the car, ask your children to look outside and find objects that contain the letter or sound they are targeting in their speech therapy. For example if your child is working on /s/ they might name signs, scooters, stores, streets, etc. Have your child repeat each word a few times and use it in a sentence. Through this activity your child can practice their speech therapy articulation goals.
4. Car Talk
Talk about where you’re going and what you’re going to do there. If you’re going to visit family members talk about who you’re going to see and where they live. Even during weekly trips to the grocery store talk about what you are going to buy and the meals you’ll make with the food you purchase. This is an incredible opportunity to incorporate new vocabulary and practice asking questions!
5. Make up a story
With children that are further along in their speech development a fun activity in the car is making up a story together! Tell your children that one person is going to start with a sentence. Then the next person adds on to the story with one sentence and everyone in the car takes turns adding one sentence to the story. If younger kids need more prompting for this activity, add a question to the end of your sentence to guide them.
As you tell these stories make sure your children are using proper grammar and sentence structure. Through this activity children will develop sequencing, proper sentence structure, grammar, and literacy.
Any activities or games you play with your kids in the car to target therapy goals that we missed? Let us know by commenting below!