Encouraging Language Development During The Holiday Season
We all know the holidays can be an especially busy time of the year, especially with little ones. One of the great things about encouraging language development is that we can incorporate it into our daily routines simply by talking about what we are doing.
The holidays offer a great time to introduce our children to new ideas, spend time together, and create memories that will last a lifetime.
Below are 3 activities you can do with your child to encourage language development:
1. Decorate Together
As you decorate for the holidays include your children. You can ask them WH- questions (Where should we put this? What would you like to do next? What ornament would you like to put on the tree?) to get their input on decorations. It’s also a great opportunity to expose your child to new descriptive vocabulary to talk about decorations (e.g. bright, lights, shiny, sparkly, bells, candy canes, gingerbread, etc.)
2. Holiday Crafts
Whether you are painting ornaments, making snowflakes, or baking holiday treats, talk about what you are doing in a sequence “first we will___, then we ____”. Encourage the use of first/then language when your child is talking about what they are making. Making crafts is also a great way to encourage requesting. Leave out an object that your child needs to complete the craft, so they can ask for materials.
3. Read Books About The Holidays
Reading books together is always a great activity. Your local library likely has many holiday books to check out. When reading with your child be sure to take your time, point to the pictures, ask questions about what is happening in the story, and share what you read with other family members.
About the author:
Nicole Calderin, CCC-SLP is the Early Intervention Program Director at SLP Communication Foundations, a division of Language Fundamentals. SLP Communication Foundations employs over 20 SLPs providing Early Intervention Speech Therapy Services across the State of New York.