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Top 5 toys to improve speech and language skills in toddlers

June 29, 2022 Revineh Barouni Comments Off

Top 5 toys to improve speech and language skills in toddlers

 

Speech and language development starts at home. Babies learn to make sounds and later on words by interacting with their parents and caregivers. As they grow older, children also start playing with toys. Toys can be used for interactive play when used in the right way. These toys are not just fun, they also help in improving speech and language skills. These toys will help expand your child’s vocabulary and encourage them to start speaking more and more. You can use a single toy in different ways. In this blog, we will go through the top five toys to improve speech and language skills in toddlers

 

How to choose the right toy for your toddler?

 

  • Follow your child’s interest: Choose toys that your child loves to play with.
  • Toys with multiple uses: You can get a single toy that targets various concepts such as comprehension of colors, prepositions, and verbs.
  • Passive toys: These are toys that require a lot of participation from your child. It makes them active participants. Passive toys respond when your child manipulates them. These are non-battery-operated toys. For example blocks, balls, soft toys, etc.
  • High quality & durable: Choose toys that are made of high-quality materials and are durable.
  • Toys that spark creativity and imagination: Toys that tap into creativity are really fun. It keeps your child engaged longer and also promotes imagination in toddlers.

 

Why toys are important for your toddler?

Using toys helps in developing speech and language skills in a fun way. It also helps improve the following:

 

  • Social and Emotional development
  • Imagination and Creative development
  • Gross motor and fine motor skill development
  • Language and Communication skills development
  • Thinking and Problem-solving skill development

To summarize toys are an integral part of a child’s development. Here’s a list of the top 5 toys to improve speech and language skills in toddlers:

  1. Stack & Count Cups

Stack & Count cups are one of my all-time favorite toys. These cups are very engaging and highly versatile in nature. The cups are available in different colors and shapes. While using these cups, you can work on the following concepts.

How to use:

  • Talk about sizes, and colors.
  • Count the cups one at a time.
  • Make tall/short towers.
  • Use prepositions- in, on, under.

 

  1. Building Blocks

Blocks are amazing toys that come in all shapes, colors, and sizes. You can use blocks to create different things like cars, buildings, tables, etc. These are passive toys that spark a lot of imagination and creativity along with speech and language skills.

How to use:

  • Talk about different concepts such as adjectives- tall, up, down, low, etc.
  • Talk about all the colors.
  • Target the shapes and sizes.
  • Talk about prepositions- in, on, over, under, next to, etc.
  • Work on simple to complex step commands/ directions.
  • When you complete the building, talk about what you have built.
  • Use figurines along with what you have built and create simple stories.

speech and language

  1. Farms/Barns

This is another favorite activity that toddlers just love. These are easily available at a local store or online. You can also be creative and create your own using paper and boxes.

How to use:

  • Talk about the different farm animals.
  • Talk about what each animal sounds like- animal sounds.
  • Take turns to imitate animal sounds.
  • Use prepositions such as in, on, under, over, etc.
  • Use adjectives like big, small, soft, up, down, open-close, etc.
  • Talk about verbs such as going, eating, drinking running, etc.
  • Create imaginative stories using figurines of people, and animals on the farm.
  • Use various “wh- questions” such as what, where, why, who, how, etc.
  • Target articulation using commonly occurring words /f/- farm, /p/-pig, /k/- cow etc.

  1. Vehicles

You can use any vehicle that your child is interested in. These vehicles can be in the form of pictures, storybooks, objects, etc. Children love playing with cars and are an excellent toy to target speech and language skills.

How to use:

  • Talk about the different vehicles.
  • Talk about what each vehicle sounds like- vehicle sounds.
  • Take turns to imitate vehicle sounds.
  • Use prepositions such as on, under, over, etc.
  • Use adjectives like big, fast, slow, up, down, go, etc.
  • Talk about verbs such as cycling, riding, driving, etc.
  • Use various “wh- questions” such as what, where, why, who, how, etc.
  • Create stories about concepts such as traffic lights, road safety, etc.
  • Use vehicles to talk about speech fluency. Talk about bumpy speech and smooth speech. You can also teach fast and slow speech by moving the vehicles fast and slowly.
  • Target different articulation sounds /s/- stop, /g/-go, /d/- down etc.

speech and language

  1. Models of food

You can use all types of food. This includes all clay, plastic, and wooden models. You can use different pretend play activities with your toddler. Create different scenarios using models including shops, markets, lunchtime, etc.

How to use:

  • You can talk about different food categories such as fruits, vegetables, dairy, etc.
  • Pretend you are cooking or baking some food. Talk about sequences such as “I am cutting the veggies and putting them in the pot. Now let’s add some salt and pepper” etc.
  • Use verbs such as washing, cleaning, cutting, cooking, etc.
  • Use prepositions such as in, on, under, over, etc.
  • Use adjectives like fried, juicy, hot, cold, etc.
  • Use various “wh- questions” such as what, where, why, who, how, etc.
  • Target different articulation sounds /ch/- chop-chop, /k/-cooking etc.

 

The list of activities you can use for each of the above toys is endless. Use your creativity and your child’s interests to direct the activities and target the speech and language skills that your child needs. Above all, have a lot of fun!!

 

 

If you are interested in becoming a speech therapist, check out the following blogs:

Interested in becoming an SLPA: How to become a Licensed SLPA in California – Speech Improvement Center
Interested in becoming an SLP: How to Become a Licensed SLP in California – Speech Improvement Center

 

Looking for books to use for speech therapy, check out: 12 Best Books for Speech Therapy – Speech Improvement Center

For employment opportunities, please visit: Employment Opportunities – Speech Improvement Center

 

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