Easter Activities to Target Speech & Language at Home
With Easter just around the corner, it’s time to get prepared for fun activities to do at home to help speech and language communication for preschoolers.
EASTER STORY BOOKS
Corduroy’s Easter by Lisa McCue: For ages 2.5-4. This is a wonderful flap-book to help hold the attention of little ones. It is great to work on early concepts such as, open and close and is great for vocabulary building. It is great to help your child begin to learn about Easter traditions such as decorating eggs while exploring locations such as the farm and grocery store. You don’t need to read the word the first time around, you can simply just talk about the pictures. Avoid asking questions to your child, but rather label the pictures and wait for him/her to label too!
Clifford’s Happy Easter by Norman Bridwell: For ages 4-6. This is colourful book that is great for working on sequencing and helping a child learn about an Easter egg hunt and decorating eggs. If your child has difficulty with the /k/ and /g/ sounds this book can also help to target those sounds. This book perfect for working on comprehension and has a humorous story. Who doesn’t love Clifford?!
TARGETING LANGUAGE WITH EASTER EGGS
Easter time is a great time to pick up a bunch of plastic eggs. They can work on so many different language and articulation skills. Definitely a very versatile therapy tool. Make sure to obtain eggs that are multi coloured and different sizes (yes they sell big and small versions). Here are some ideas of what you can do during a traditional Easter egg hunt!
A classic egg hunt is a great way to work on “where” questions, particularly using prepositions and doesn’t take as much space as you might think. Place the eggs in strategic locations, under, in, next to, beside items in the environment. Ask your child “where” a certain coloured egg is and prompt them for a preposition in their response.
Stimulate a yes/no activity by obtaining various items that will or will not fit into the eggs. Play one of three ways, 1) make predictions about what will firt into the egg and then ask again when you see the result (eg. “Do you think this will fit?” and “Does it fit?”) 2) mix and match coloured and different sizes of tops and bottoms and ask the child if a select two should go together. Also an exercise in same/different 3) place different items inside the eggs prior to seeing the child. When the child arrives, have them shake, listen to or feel the weight of the egg and what’s inside and guess the contents. They can then check to see if they’re right or wrong by answering “yes” or “no”.
Using traditional Easter egg colouring kits or just plain markers, try to use concepts of “same” and “different” in addition to descriptive words that relate the eggs. One could be polka dots, one could be striped. If you use wax writing while dying one could be “rough” while one could be “smooth”. A complementary game of “I Spy” would nicely help to reinforce these concepts (eg. “I Spy an egg that is pink and bumpy”). Using store bought plastic eggs, consider gluing differing textures of items for the same effect.
Make labels that have initial, medial and final target sound on them. For eg. “sock” (initial), “grasshopper” (medial) and “bats” (final). Colour code the labels so if your child can’t read they can still determine the sound placement. Have fun collecting the eggs in a basket.
Use food colouring to colour crushed eggshells. Use a few different colours. (You can use eggshells from eggs you have used. There is no need to hard boil these eggshells.) Let your child glue eggshells to a piece of paper, after the dye has dried.
Children cut out two identical Easter basket shapes and about three different coloured eggs. The grass in the picture can be made with green construction paper and store bough Easter grass. Children can glue the eggs and grass to the basket, then staple the two basket pieces together.
These are great to play with the entire family! Share the Easter fun!
Divide the family into two teams. Use plastic eggs and an Easter basket. Place a piece of masking tape on the floor for a throw line. The distance from the basket to the line should vary with abilities. Have the family take turns throwing the eggs into the basket. Whichever team gets the most eggs in the basket wins.
Gather 8 half gallon milk cartons, or 2 liter bottles. Fill the bottles about 1/8 full with water ad seal the lid. Then, decorate the bottles like bunnies, adding construction paper ears, and use permanent markers for the eyes and nose. Set the bottles up like they were bowling pins and have the family roll a ball to try to knock them over. If they don’t knock over easily, remove some water.
Amy Grossi is a pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist, practicing for over 10 years. Amy enjoys the area of early language, literacy development, apraxia and fluency. She has a passion for working with children with multiple developmental needs and implementing creative and interactive treatment sessions.