Is it still cold where you are? Or still raining like it has been in the Carolinas for the last two weeks? Rain or shine, we came up with 5 fun activities you can do at home with your kids for the last few weeks of winter. These activities are simple and fun, but also target speech and language skills.
Finger Paint Play
Most of us cringe at the thought of the mess that could be made with finger painting. Although it can be messy, there is also great fun to be had. You can join in by painting different shapes and pictures then having them guess what they are. If you have an older kiddo you can paint letters or words and have them practice their letter recognition and sight words. Play possibilities are endless here as you can let them create unique masterpieces. You can make your own version of Pictionary. This gives you the opportunity to discuss a variety of vocabulary including colors, shapes, and sizes. If your child is working on developing a certain speech sound, draw things that have that sound in it then encourage them to imitate. For example, if they are working on the /b/ sound, draw a ball or boat to expose them to the sound and give them to opportunity to practice.
I think most kids can agree that making snowflakes is fun no matter what age they are. All you need is paper, scissors, and paint/crayons/colored pencils. Get a square piece of paper or trim a piece of paper so that it is square. Fold your square in half diagonally. Fold your triangle in half – again diagonally. Fold paper in thirds … one side to the front, the other to the back. Trim the extra piece of paper off the end of your small triangle. Around the outside of your triangle, cut some fun designs — circles, squares, triangles, squiggles … anything goes. Unfold your paper and look at your masterpiece. Optional: Color the snowflake with paint, crayons or colored pencils. Voila! A rainbow snowflake. You can talk about the different sizes, shapes and colors they are creating. You can also have them predict what the snowflakes will look like as well as compare and contrast the different snowflakes. This is a great activity that targets expressive and receptive vocabulary as well as following directions and comparing and contrasting.
Paper Ball Toss
Who remembers throwing paper balls with friends and family growing up? This is a fun game that is sure to entertain your kiddos. Grab some colorful paper and crumple it up into balls. Your kiddos can answer questions or say different sounds to earn their paper snowballs. After they earn them, they can try to toss them in a basket or designated area. The child with the most paper balls at the end wins. This is great time to teach them new words and for them to practice articulating different sounds. This games gives the opportunity for your child to expand their speech and language vocabulary.
Raise your hand if your child is highly motivated by food! What kiddo doesn’t want to work for marshmallows? Grab a list of speech sounds your child needs to work on. Set out a few cups of hot cocoa. For every correct sound production, your kiddo can throw a marshmallow into their cup from across the table. The person with the most marshmallows at the end wins. This is a fabulous way for your child to get used to hearing and saying proper sound productions. This game builds their awareness of how to articulate the sounds they are struggling with all while working for as many marshmallows as possible. It’s a win win!
We hope this provides you with some fun games to play with your kiddos this winter season. No winter blues here!