Hunting For Language!
With spring and Easter coming up, it is the perfect time to plan an activity that will be both fun and a great way to stimulate language. For this egg hunt, it is likely that many of the items I am going to suggest are already in your house or easily accessible at a local store. Using plastic eggs, fill them with spring themed items. Such items could include candies, flowers, a plastic butterfly or other insects, seeds, etc. Depending on whether the egg hunt is inside or outside, lay out other items that may be too large to fit inside an egg, including a fluffy bunny or a shovel. Once the set up is complete it is time to start the game! Specific Language Targets:
Following Directions/Learning Concepts:
Rather than letting the child wander freely to each visible egg, direct the child to a specific egg. For example, you could work on the concept of colors by instructing, “Go get a yellow egg.” Another possibility is the promotion of spatial concepts, “Get the egg in the basket.” “Find the egg beside the bunny.” “Find the egg under the table.” The complexity of the directions can be adapted to fit ability level and age. You could direct a child to two different eggs at different locations, or you could make the child discriminate between choices at the same location by indicating, “Get the blue egg in the basket.”
Either with each egg or once all the eggs have been collected, open them up and begin to ask questions. Start with “What did you find?” or “What is inside?” If the child does not know explain what he/she has found. In this way you will be working on expanding vocabulary along with answering the question. After the child has identified an object begin to ask questions about the object itself. If the child has found a flower some sample questions could be, “Where does a flower grow?” or “What makes a flower grow?” To stimulate language a child does not need to always be answering questions. It is likely that a child will grow bored of the activity if all you do is ask questions constantly. Allow time for the adult to talk about the item without expecting any response to maintain interest. “You found a flower. That flower is a daisy. It is white and has lots of petals. Mommy grows flowers in her garden.” This activity is limitless in its possibilities. Do not feel constrained by my suggestions. Instead, be as creative as you can. Happy Hunting!
Erin Norwig, M.A. CF-SLP
**If you have any concerns with your child’s speech, language, hearing and/or feeding development, please contact Sidekick Therapy Partners at (865) 693-5622. We have a team of experienced speech-language pathologists that would love to meet with you and discuss options for your child. **