Here are some fun activities that you can play with your child to improve their language development. Please remember: "Play Time is Learning Time". If you are stressed, your child will be stressed so make this a fun bonding time knowing that you are providing support to encourage language development with your child.
The followinf communication and language activities can help your child learn and model his language skills. Many of our children have articulation needs so always remember to model correct speech sounds. However, this is not the time to correct your child, this is a time to build confidence and a love of language.
1: Play the Telephone Game
A toy telephone can be an active part of your little one's playtime. Get a pair of toy phones and pretend that you are calling your child. Encourage your child to pick up the phone and tell your child "It's for YOU!" Teach your child to say "Hi" when answering the phone and have a simple conversation. Doing this activity regulary can help your child improve his speaking skills in a fun familiar way. "I talk on the phone like Mommy!"
2: Sing with your Child
Singing songs can help your child improve his/her language while having fun. This also encourages learning new words, increaseing the number of words they say, and how to speak in sentences.
3: Play the "Name Game"
Point to different objects in your house and ask your child to name them. You can help your child with the names until he/she begins to say then on their own. You can change this activity by hiding objects (under a blanket or bowl) and ask "Where's the ....?" Then make a big deal when your child finds it. Remember to say the name of the object again .... "Oh! You found the ...! Great job!"
4: Read, Read, Read
Reading to your child every night is a great way to introduce them to different words. Start with a very simple book with pictures. Look at the cover and talk about what the book might be about. Ask your child what he/she things it might be about to build interest. As you read the book, ask questions related to the pictures. Remember to pick a book with few words and lively pictures.
*Then color a picture
*or make a sock puppet related to the story ("The Very Hungry Caterpillar" is a good one for this.)
5: Give your child Toys and Puppets
Give or create puppets and/or toys and encourage your child to have them talk. (This is a fun language builder.)
6: Set an Obstacle Course
Create a simple obstacle course around the house (use furniture, pillows, toys, etc. . . ). Give your child one instruction at a time. For example, "go under the table" "over the pillow" "behind the desk". Do this activity together with you going first to model the direction for your child. Use the book "Going on a Bear Hunt". Youtube has several examples to give you an idea how to make this activity fun.