If you or a loved one has a speech disorder, you may be familiar with the field of speech therapy. Speech therapy, performed by speech-language pathologists, helps to assess, diagnose and treat a wide spectrum of communication and speech disorders in both children and adults.
Using a variety of techniques like language intervention therapy, speech therapists improve how people communicate. Depending on the type and severity of the type of speech disorder, a speech therapist will develop several practices and activities to amend the root cause.
If you believe your child has a speech disorder, you may be looking to connect with a speech therapist. But luckily, there are simple exercises you can do at home that will not only improve your child’s communication but also keep them engaged.
It can be difficult to keep a child’s attention, but these 5 speech therapy ideas, developed by some of the best speech language pathology programs from reputable places like Speech Pathology Graduate Programs will be sure to make an impact and help your child progress to their ultimate end goal.
1. Building Blocks
Start with a list of a couple of speech skills you’d like your child to master. Each time your child practices the skill successfully, give him or her a block to place atop a tower. Once the tower falls, repeat the process from the first skill. Encourage your child to keep building it as tall as they can.
2. Play Hopscotch
These fun and active activities are perfect for energized children. Draw a hopscotch track on the ground and have your child practice the skill once before jumping. Once successful, move to the next skill and have them jump again.
3. Trace Lines or Shapes
Get out a couple of pieces of colorful paper and fun art supplies. Have your child draw lines, diagrams, or shapes on the paper. After they’re finished, laminate the page or put it in a plastic sheet protector. Then have your child trace the lines, shapes, or diagrams all while repeating the specific skill you’re working on. Erase the paper after the activity is complete and save it to use again next time.
Almost every child loves play dough, but did you know it can have multiple therapeutic qualities for children with disorders? Give your child a small amount of playdough or other similar substance for every successful skill repetition. Once your child has all the playdough, she or he can play with it.
5. Go for a Walk
The next time you walk somewhere with your child, whether that’s to school, the playground, or even the grocery store, have him or she take one step for every successful repetition. Use your final destination as the prize to keep going.
Even just testing out a couple of these activities per week will go a long way in your child’s progression. Remember to set up specific, consistent times of day for your child to practice so they are energized and ready to learn.