Games are a great way of encouraging children to engage in an activity and learn from it. Different games can help kids tackle a variety of speech issues in a fun, casual way, and can help bring speech therapy into their daily routine. In this blog, we will look at a few different games you can try out, and what they can do to help your child’s speech.
This age-old family classic can be a great way of engaging children with all sorts of speech problems. Whether it’s stuttering, use of adjectives, or word association, there are plenty of words choices that will get your kid talking. Other benefits include the fact that the game can be played with other kids, and also helps them learn to identify different characters, which can be helpful for children with conditions such as autism.
If you ever need a quick activity on the fly, this game is the perfect choice. All you have to do is write one word on the back of a number of sticky notes, and then stick them around the room. The kids then have to pick a note, read the back, and pronounce the word. If they get it right, they keep the note, and the person with the most notes at the end wins. This activity is not only cheap and mobile, but can also be used to engage a group of children with varying language abilities.
Blowing bubbles might not be an activity you would typically associate with SLT, but there are plenty of reasons this helps kids learn. Firstly, it is a highly engaging activity, and few people can resist blowing, popping, or running around in bubbles when they are there. This excitement helps get children engaged and leave their insecurities behind. There are also lots of ways to get the kids talking, like asking them if they want lots of small bubbles, one big one, to count how many they pop, and so on. Finally, blowing bubbles helps kids purse their lips into the correct O-shape, which many SLT patients can have difficulty doing.
If the sun is out, playing with chalk is a great way to get kids out of the house, and there are plenty of ways it can help them learn new words, and how to express themselves. You can ask them to draw a specific object, like an animal, or to guess what you’re drawing. You could ask them to explain what they’re drawing, or even teach them new games using chalk, like hopscotch.
Another great outdoor activity to try is gardening. This can be helpful for children who prefer a little more privacy, but still want to get outside. One of the main advantages of gardening in SLT is that there are so many words to choose from, you will always have somewhere to start and somewhere to go. Whether it’s learning the different names of the plants, or describing how the look and smell, there’s no shortage of stuff to talk about.
Every child has different needs, but hopefully these games are broad enough that at least a few of them can help you and your child. Try to play games that will push your child, but make sure that they are still having fun. It may be therapy, but the success in these games lies in keeping it fun, so listen to what the child likes, and build from there.