Has your speech therapy been interrupted due to stay-at-home orders or an abrupt switch to virtual learning? The good news is, you have lots of options to keep your progress going with speech therapy activities at home.
At Home Speech Therapy Activities for Kids
There are tons of easy ways to practice speech and language development skills at home with children. Keep it fun and relaxed, and your kids won’t even know they’re learning!
Indoor Speech Activities At Home
1. Cook Together
You can focus on foods or recipes that have include your target sound. If your child is working on ch words, for example, you could create chicken chimichangas, chili, or chocolate cheesecake. Yum! Ask lots of questions and have your child verbalize the steps as you go.
2. Go on a Photo Scavenger Hunt
Send your kids off with an ipad, smartphone, or camera to take photos of household items that start with your target sound. Example: find 10 items that start with the /k/ sound. Send them hunting while you do dishes or enjoy a cup of coffee, and then have them present their findings to you, with a focus on articulation.
3. Cozy Reading Time
Nothing beats good, old-fashioned story time with your kids! Make it extra special by building a fort and reading inside, declaring it “pajama day” and snuggling on the couch, or creating a new reading nook together stocked with new library books. Any exposure to reading, either by listening to you read or having your child sound out words, is excellent for speech and language development.
4. Spice Up Your Speech and Language Flashcard Drills
Flashcards are very useful in speech therapy when practicing new sounds, but they can get boring very quickly. Change things up by adding movement and variation to your flashcard practice. You could hide flashcards in a dark room and send children on a “flashlight hunt” to find them. Let children design and create new flashcards. They can color and cut them out with you. Play pictionary, charades, or create play-doh shapes based on the sound on each card.
Outdoor Fun with Speech Activities
5. Hopscotch and Sidewalk Chalk Speech Practice
There are loads of ways you can use sidewalk chalk to practice sounds with kids. Draw a hopscotch game with sounds written in each square. When your child tosses a rock on a square, they move through the game while saying the target sound or naming words that begin with the sound. Other sidewalk chalk speech activities: write letters, sounds, or words; practice positional concepts like over/under/in; draw people to work on pronouns and possessives.
6. Go on a Nature Scavenger Hunt.
Look for things that start with your child’s target sound. Talk about directions, where things are located, and more.
7. Have a Picnic Together.
There’s tons of opportunity for language practice when preparing for and having a picnic. Practice categorizing items and following directions while planning your picnic. You could focus on food items with a target sound, or ask kids to group items by sound. Then, while you enjoy your food, use sensory words to talk about how everything tastes and what you can see out in nature.
Online Speech Therapy Activities for Kids
8. Speech Therapy Apps for Kids
There are many options out there for your children to practice speech therapy online. Popular apps like Articulation Station, Splingo, and Speech Tutor can help engage children in speech learning. Check out Verywell Family’s Best Speech Therapy Apps of 2020.
9. Video Calls with Family
Video conferencing apps like Zoom and FaceTime have exploded in popularity in 2020. Schedule lots of video calls with family and friends to not only stay connected but to practice language skills. An advantage to virtual calls is that kids have to be hyper-focused on articulation in order to be understood over the internet.
10. Educational Websites for Speech Therapy Practice
Sites like PBS Kids, Scholastic, Story Place, and Fun Brain, have loads of activities to help kids focus on language skills. You can also ask older children to create their own flashcard sets on a site like Quizlet, which offers interactive language practice games in addition to regular digital flashcards.
Find an Online Speech Therapy Practice
Many Speech Language Pathologists now have online telepractice for speech therapy. Whether you’re stuck at home due to COVID-19 or your options are limited by your location, there are plenty of virtual speech therapy options out there. Search here to find your perfect fit Speech Language Pathologist.